Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Rainbow Salad for the Maple Bar Soul

Today was D-Day for my husband...Doctor Day. My other half is one of those people who has only visited the doctor a small handful of times in his entire life. When he was a 6 month old baby, his parents brought him and his brother on a 13 hour flight from Manila to the small casino town of Reno. They were crashing at his uncle's place when my baby husband suddenly took a turn for the worse. With no job yet to pay a bill and no car to take them anywhere, his parents walked him quite a distance to the hospital. Fortunately, he recovered if only slightly orange from the copious amounts of carrot juice prescribed (for what?).

Then there was the time he fell off a swing and broke his elbow...but it took a few days to ascertain that it was broken. He might have got a band-aid out of the deal, but certainly not a doctor. I mean, what were they going to do, put a cast on an elbow??

The man hasn't thrown up since 7th grade, can you believe it?

I convinced him to visit my naturopathic doctor once, but then she got a little freaky for him when she asked him which of the bottles of supplements he was leaning toward. Like, did he have a feeling that he take one more than the other. Uh...aren't you the doctor? (on a side note...I love my doctor and think she's great, but I've never had the "make a choice" treatment)

After months of knowing for certain that things weren't as they should be, he finally decided to make the call. Nothing serious (no lumps or anything), only severe pains in his toe and thumb. New shoes were prescribed for the toes.

But the blood pressure cuff told a different did that pesky tape measure. He was solidly marching in the heart disease direction, obviously not the band he wanted to play with.

So, now I feel like I should apologize for all the butter we've ingested this year. But I'm not taking responsibility for those donuts. Let the record show that I've NEVER said, "We should make donuts, honey." And anything in the deep fryer was his, too. Unfortunately, the vast majority of heavy cream and sweets fall into my court. Say goodbye to bacon-topped maple bars.

Tonight, however, I started with vegetables and made a veritable rainbow for dinner. Beets roasted in balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and garlic. Fruit salad of nectarines, plums, and kiwis dressed with a little orange juice and some honey. Oven-roasted, then broiled, tilapia with fresh chives, oregano, and thyme from my garden.

But the show-stopper tonight was this veggie salad I improvised. And the great thing is, you could substitute anything you like in here.

Rainbow Salad

In a bowl, combine:

3 ears of corn, boiled 5 minutes, then cut the kernels off with a sharp knife.

A handful of cherry tomatoes, quartered.

1 red pepper, diced.

Saute, then add to the bowl:

1 small summer squash, chopped
1 small leek, halved and chopped
2 medium carrots, diced
a few fresh peas, shells removed

When those are tender, combine all the veggies together. Then whip up a dressing. Lime would be good, but I was out. So I made a vinaegrette.

Whisk together:

1/4 c olive oil
2-3 TB red wine vinegar (to taste)
salt and pepper

Add any of the following:

chili powder

Drizzle over the salad and mix gently. Let it sit for a few minutes to soak up the flavors.

That dinner was one step back in the right direction. I guess my Julie Jams theme this year is going to be to get on the health train. This is your body on pre-middle-age...


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