Salad Secrets

As promised, here are some of my favorite salad combinations for lunch. All it really takes is some lettuce (although arugula or kale are much more exciting), an assortment of cut up vegetables, and some roasted vegetables. While living at home, I often just make a refrigerator leftover salad. In other words, anything and everything leftover in the fridge goes on my salad. Add some beans if you need protein and top it off with a good salad dressing. My favorite of the fall so far is Dijon vinaigrette; sometimes I add in maple syrup as well.

For week one of my stay in Boston, I roasted butternut squash and chicken with a maple balsamic glaze (this is exactly what it sounds like—roasted with balsamic vinaigrette and maple syrup). At lunch, I topped off some greens with the butternut squash and lentils. I often added some chopped carrots or avocado. For dinner, it was greens with chicken and some more cut veggies.

Roasted maple balsamic chicken and butternut squash for the week
Roasted maple balsamic chicken and butternut squash for the week
Lentils, squash, carrots on arugula and ready for lunch
Lentils, squash, carrots on arugula and ready for lunch
Added some avocado today!
Added some avocado today!

Week two had two options. Either roasted eggplant and eggplant with chickpeas or roasted sweet potato and scallion with black beans. Sometimes I added in chopped Brussels sprouts, carrots, or apple. Roasted pumpkin seeds and salsa were nice additions as well. But it really is just a good roasted vegetable and salad dressing that make it so delicious.

Kale with chicken. And then I found some dried cranberries in the pantry
Kale with chicken. And then I found some dried cranberries in the pantry

Dijon Vinaigrette:

Lemon juice and olive oil in 1:1 ratio

Finely chopped garlic clove

1 tsp Dijon mustard

optional: sprinkle of cinnamon, spoonful of maple syrup, apple cider vinegar

Salads never feel boring now, and I look forward to thinking of and exploring with new creations. Roasted squash, pomegranate seeds, and avocado is one of my next combinations to try…

But really only two secrets to the salad: roasted vegetables and a well-seasoned dressing.

Chickpeas, brussels sprouts, and eggplant on kale
Chickpeas, brussels sprouts, and eggplant on kale
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