My 2017 New Year’s Resolution was to eat more whole foods, eliminate the time spent at restaurants, and focus on happiness. I can proudly say I have accomplished those things. I can count the number of times spent at restaurants on both hands, I’ve spent more time cooking delicious and nutritious meals at home, I’ve been much kinder to my body when it comes to fitness, and honestly, I’ve never been happier. There have been other factors in my overall happiness, but I feel like I’ve finally made it to a good place. ♥
One thing I love is going to healthy restaurants. I’m obsessed with places that offer unique wholesome foods, farm-fresh produce, giant salads, juices, and fun superfood ingredients. It’s the small things that make me happy, and I’ve always been obsessed with color. Healthy food is colorful and beautiful. I make it a point to stop at healthy restaurants when I’m on vacation because I love trying out new and exciting recipes. I get a lot of my inspiration from places I’ve traveled to.
But when I’m home, it’s back to those goals of eating at home, so I try to bring the healthy restaurant experience to my own table. Luckily, I have a boyfriend who enjoys healthy eating as much as I do, so it’s not much of a challenge. Now that spring is pretty much here to stay in the South; the farmer’s markets are finally open and in full force. I love stopping by to fill my fridge up with ingredients for healthy salads, roasted veggies, grilled veggies, or fresh juices and smoothies. This summer, I’m going to bring a ton of new and fresh recipes to the blog complimentary of the local farmers market.
Over the weekend, I put together a lunch salad with some of the leftover produce I had in the fridge. We had our salad with a side of chicken and sweet potato chili. I think the more colorful, the better.
While I was cleaning out the cupboards on Saturday morning, I found my glass salad dressing bottles. They were shoved in the back of the spice cabinet. I couldn’t wait to fill them up with my own salad dressing. Making homemade dressing is fun, and they always taste better than the store-bought ones.
I have created a spring & summer recipe list for the blog, and a salad dressing post is coming up! I’ll be making four farm-fresh salad dressings, but for today, I’m just sharing one I made recently that you’ll definitely want to make at home! It’s unique, flavorful, and I can’t get enough!
When I was at the farmer’s market last week, I saw a giant stack of rhubarb. I haven’t cooked with rhubarb in a while, and it made me think about my grandpa. My grandpa used to grow a ton of it in his garden, and he’d make rhubarb pie! It was his specialty. Until I get that recipe, I won’t attempt to make my own. I decided to grab a bunch, not knowing what I was going to make with it yet.
When I found the dressing bottles on Saturday afternoon, I rummaged through my fridge and pulled out a ton of random ingredients for the dressing. It was then that I decided to use the rhubarb!
Sweet Rhubarb & Pomegranate Orange Dressing
- 1/4 Cup Chopped Rhubarb
- 1/2 Small Shallot
- 2 Garlic Cloves
- 1/2 Cup Light Olive Oil (+2 for sautéing)
- 2 Tbsps Pomegranate Seeds
- 3 Tbsps Apple Cider Vinegar
- 2 Tbsps Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 Large Orange
- 1/4 Cup Honey (or agave if vegan)
- 1/2 Tsp Sea Salt
- 1 Tsp Black Pepper
- 1 Tsp Garlic Powder
- 1 Tsp Onion Powder
- 2 Tsps Ground Mustard
- 1 Tsp Dill Weed
- 1 Tsp Oregano
Heat a pan on medium-high heat with two tablespoons of olive oil. Add chopped garlic and shallots. Sautee for one minute, and then add the chopped rhubarb.
While the rhubarb is sauteeing, squeeze the juice from the orange into a blender. Add the olive oil, pomegranate seeds, balsamic vinegar, apple cider vinegar, honey, sea salt, dill, oregano, ground mustard, onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper, and sea salt.
Once the rhubarb is slightly browned and softened, add it (with the remnants in the pan) to the blender.
Continue to pulse the blender in two-second increments until the rhubarb is blended.
Taste the dressing with a spoon to determine if it needs more honey or spices.
Keep refrigerated & shake well before using.
I massaged the kale with the sweet rhubarb and pomegranate orange dressing before adding the toppings. I added leftover sauteed rhubarb (tossed in honey to tone down the tart), avocados, cucumber, leftover pomegranate seeds, pecans, white peaches, red onions, and orange slices.
I would normally add some hard boiled eggs or a grilled protein, but we had chicken & sweet potato chili on the side. Kale salads and healthy chili go perfectly together.
What I love about healthy restaurants is trying out new juices or smoothies with lunch. It’s not something I usually do at home because of all the work. Lately, I’ve been making them in advance at home with the extra produce from the week. This little juice had kale, wheat grass, white peaches, lime, cucumber, and ginger. I shared a couple of other juices on my Insta-story yesterday! 🙂
Since we’re already on the topic of salads, I thought I’d share a fun way to add extra crunch to them. I keep a lot of toppings in containers in my cupboards, which I’ll share soon! One of my favorite combos is the dried chickpeas, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds tossed with falafel seasoning!
I’ve been all about the fresh food and big salads this week 🙂 You can find the details on the salad above on this post! And if you’re eyeballing that chicken, check out my latest recap post to see what (no sugar added/organic) sauces I used.
Questions for you!
- Do you love the healthy restuarant expereince?
- Do you make your own salad dressings?
- What recipes do you make with rhubarb?