dinner club favorites: crunchy chopped salad

Hello there.  I am still here.  Still cooking and baking.  Still taking photos.  Just never quite finishing a post.  I really need to move my iMac into the kitchen.  My first little iMac only lived in the kitchen and we were all sad to see it's spinning wheel screen of no return last year.  Such a long and useful life.  I love all the space on my island without an iMac hanging out at the end, but I can feel a little isolated in my office and so I don't find myself sitting at my computer as much as I probably should.  There probably aren't a lot of people who can say that, come to think about it.

We don't have wi-fi at lululemon (although we have been promised backroom wi-fi in 2013), so checking your iPhone news, twitter and facebook feeds on break can be painfully slow and super draining on battery life.  My good friends at Starbucks are very tolerant of me enjoying my packed non-Starbucks lunch in their cozy store with free wi-fi.  But let's face it, I do not have the miniature keyboard skills to tap out a blog post on my blogger app on my iPhone.  And I do not have proofing skills even with my reading glasses on some days.

I bought a nice iPad size wireless keyboard for my iPad, but mine is first generation and ridiculously slow so I don't write posts very often on my iPad which I can take to parts of the house where there might be people or at least the illusion of company when the television is on.  So I'm either going to have to move my computer or just make a better effort to sit here, turn up the Spotify and get posting.

I told you all about my dinner club plans and never posted a recipe.  That will show you!  Actually, I wasn't entirely pleased with the meal.  Just being honest.  Even someone who cooks all the time, can have a miss or a near one from time to time.  I had two trays of try-tip to roast and used my convection oven, but did not adjust the time enough and the roast we served on the table was too medium done for my liking.  It turns out the roast we had as leftovers was actually perfect.  By the time we carved and served the roasts, there were a few too many beverages between Greg and I and neither of us thought to check that possibly one of the trays of roast would be different or better than the other.  We feasted on some roast beast for the better part of a week.  Let me tell you how well red meat goes with hot yoga.  It does not at all.  Painful detox.

The brussel sprout gratin with gorgonzola was good, but needed buttered bread crumbs to elevate it to post status.  I'll work on it.  Polenta and roasted tomatoes are pretty basic and probably already discussed here.  But the salad and the dessert were spot on so tonight I'll write you a little salad post.  The raspberry swirl angel food cake is coming up next because it would be divine for Valentine's Day!

Have to say I didn't think the salad would be my favorite part, so there are not pictures.  You have to know what chopped vegetable salads look like.  I'll make it again and post some pictures for your soon.  Might make it this week.  Much better for the detox than beef.  And what better week to do a little pre-emptive detoxing than the days leading up to the Super Bowl?

This salad recipe originally called for fresh mint and I know it would be good in it, but just not in January.  Too summery.  So it's very optional.  I do like the lime juice, even though citrus is summery.  My blog is titled a squeeze of lime, just sayin'...  The vegetables you use could be anything crunchy you can dice.  Salads are always better chopped.  I do not know why, but try it.  Little bite size diced vegetables are just fun to eat.  I always dice in avocados if I have good ones ready.  And they are definitely not crunchy.  Just good and good for you!  You could add some baked tofu or roasted chicken and make a complete meal out of this salad.  You could even add some cooked and cooled whole grains like wheat berries, quinoa or barley (just double the dressing for the grains).  Toast your sunflower seeds carefully over medium heat in a dry pan on the stove for 5-10 minutes, tossing or stirring occasionally.  Pretty sure the sunflower seeds made the salad for me!

Crunchy Chopped Salad

head of romaine, tough leaves removed, washed and chopped
1 C thinly sliced and diced radishes
1 C small dice chopped little cucumbers
1 C small dice chopped red onion
1 large avocado, ripe, pitted and diced
1/3 C toasted sunflower seeds
1/2 C crumbled feta (ricotta salata or plain goat cheese would also be good)
2 T lime juice
2 T olive oil
1/4 tsp Kosher salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/4 tsp cumin
1/8 tsp cayenne
1-2 T chopped fresh mint leaves, optional

In a large bowl, toss together the vegetables, sunflower seeds and feta.  In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, olive oil, salt, pepper, cumin and cayenne.  Pour over salad and toss.  Serve with mint, if desired.  Adjust salt and pepper to taste and serve.

So, little Rio here is not a picture of a crunchy salad.
He is, however begging for my attention and playing hockey
with a very expensive camera's attached lens cover.  :)


  1. One of my Carmel friend raved about this recipe, so I hope to try it this week. I'm an Indy blogger, and I was thrilled to find another local blogger :)


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