My Take on the Red River Salad and How to Eat Away From Home

I have to work on my food styling, but hey, I'm a newbie.

I have to work on my food styling, but hey, I’m a newbie.

I recall the very first time I read the list on the MS Diet for Women of things that you can and cannot eat.  Let me tell you.   There are a heck of a lot more cannots than cans and I started feeling overwhelmed and discouraged.  After Sean took a quick browse through, he said the same thing that many of you I’m sure are thinking.  What CAN I eat?!  And I’m sure this is closely followed by your grocery shopping budget.  To help with that, I did a quick post yesterday on Wal-Mart shopping.  If however, I’m honest, Meijer is a little more expensive, but they have a much larger variety.

But back to tackling the what-to-eat issue.  There is nothing quick or easy about clean eating.  It is much more time consuming and requires preemptive planning on what you’re going to eat for the day and the week.  I suggest checking out Pinterest for one and also making a weekly menu before heading to the grocery store.  We’ll get more into that as the weeks progress, but today I would really like to get a little more in-depth with eating out.  Once again, this is going to take some planning.  You can pretty much kiss fast-food good-bye.  This is part of the brain training that you have to start doing.  Fast-food = poison.  This isn’t a lie.  There is nothing beneficial to you or your body by going to get fast-food.  Trust me, I get it.  This school year is coming laden with 2 kids in soccer, both girls in dance and Christian in violin.  I also co-lead Bible study and the kids are starting a new school.  This is just a sampling of what fall looks like for me, so I completely understand the temptation to whip into that drive-up window.  But don’t.  Please don’t.  I thought that getting a salad at McDonald’s wasn’t going to kill me, but then I read about the salad dressings with their exceptionally high sodium content and the way they processed their chicken so badly that I’m not sure how they can label it chicken any longer and I had to face the facts.  It is no good for you.

So your best bet?  Salad.  Sit-down eatery salad.  I am so bored with salad.  I understand it…  a pile of greens is to a chef is like a blank canvas for us artists, but I’m bored.  Everyone has the wedge, the cobb, the caesar….  can’t we get a little more interesting?!  My taste buds are falling asleep people!!!!  Then, at the more unlikely eatery (Don Pablo’s to be exact!), I find the Red River Salad.   My palate was doing the happy dance and I have been having dreams about this salad ever since!  So, it was time to figure it out for myself and that is exactly what I did.  I will add a disclaimer.  The honey lime dressing served with this salad doesn’t get rave reviews in the healthy department, so use sparingly.  The dressing I have come up with however, is a much lighter alternative. Also, I always use organic greens. I would suggest to buy organic whenever possible.  I know how expensive it can be, but carrots, bananas and greens aren’t that much more.   Without further ado, The Red River Salad.

Red River Salad

organic mixed greens

sliced tomato

sliced avocado

ruby-red grapefruit in chunks

red onion thinly sliced

sliced almonds (I threw these on in addition because this girl has GOT to have some crunch!)

Mind you, all of the toppings are optional.  I omitted the onion and tomato today because I just wasn’t feeling it.  Put the greens in the bottom of a large bowl, and add your remaining ingredients.

Honey Lime Dressing

1/4 cup fresh lime juice (1 large lime should do it)

2 T of olive oil

3 T of honey

1 T freshly chopped cilantro

1 garlic clove minced

1 t of chopped jalapeno (This is optional, but I went for it because I have a plethora.  One of the few successful plants I had this year!)

Mix all ingredients.  Pour mixture over salad and then toss the salad.  Enjoy!

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