Sunday, December 28, 2014

Reflections and Eating Healthy

When the Year Grows Old

I cannot but remember
When the year grows old—
How she disliked the cold!

She used to watch the swallows
Go down across the sky,
And turn from the window
With a little sharp sigh.

And often when the brown leaves
Were brittle on the ground,
And the wind in the chimney
Made a melancholy sound,

She had a look about her
That I wish I could forget—
The look of a scared thing
Sitting in a net!

Oh, beautiful at nightfall
The soft spitting snow!
And beautiful the bare boughs
Rubbing to and fro!

But the roaring of the fire,
And the warmth of fur,
And the boiling of the kettle
Were beautiful to her!

I cannot but remember
When the year grows old—
How she disliked the cold!

by Edna St. Vincent Millay


Arugula Salad with Honey-Clementine Vinaigrette 
Cook's notes: About this time of the year everyone is feeling stuffed from holiday binge eating and looking forward to healthier choices for 2015. This salad should fit the bill. 
The toppings here work incredibly well together. The pomegranate seeds add a fruity burst to every bite, and the toasted sunflower seeds create delicious notes of nuttiness (pumpkin seeds would work great as well!) Pistachios add crunch, color, and an earthy tone, while Parmesan adds sharp, salty flavor. Adding quinoa makes eating even healthier.
The real star here, though, is the vinaigrette. The main ingredient is fresh clementine juice, while honey is added for a touch of sweetness. Pomegranates and Clementines are seasonal fruits so there is small window of opportunity to buy them.  
 Maple Grove Farms of Vermont Fat Free Cranberry Balsamic can be substituted for the vinaigrette.
This recipe is adapted from and serves 4
Salad Ingredients

  • 5 cups arugula/spinach or kale or a combination of all three 
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate, seeds only 
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries 
  • 3 clementines, peeled and segmented or substitute 2 navel oranges 
  • 4 TB. lightly salted pistachios (shells removed), roughly chopped 
  • 3 TB. sunflower seeds 
  • 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano shavings, crumbled goat or feta cheese 
  • optional 1-1/2 cups cooked quinoa and/or avocado slices
Honey-Clementine Vinaigrette

  • Juice of three clementines to equal 1/3 cup or fresh orange juice 
  • 6 tbsp. extra-virgin olive-oil 
  • 2 TB. honey (add more to taste) 
  • 3 tsp. white balsamic vinegar, Cranberry Pear White Balsamic or Pomegranate Quince 
  • 1 garlic clove, minced 
  • Salt and pepper to taste 
  • Divide the arugula evenly among four salad plates. Place the sunflower seeds in a small dry skillet and toast over medium heat until golden brown. 
  • Meanwhile, sprinkle the chopped pistachios and the pomegranate seeds over the arugula. When the sunflower seeds are nice and toasty, add them to the salads. 
  • Add clementine segments and top each salad with Parmesan shavings or crumbled goat/feta cheese, top with avocado slices.  
  • To make the vinaigrette, whisk all the ingredients together in a small bowl, use a blender or add to a small mason jar and shake to combine. If you use a mason jar, you can keep the leftover vinaigrette in the jar and store in the refrigerator. 

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