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  • Krista A. Parr

Everyday Salad with Cumin Vinaigrette and Toasted Pepitas

Eating healthy food on a consistent basis requires setting yourself up for success. Preparing food in advance that you can reach for in a hurry is key, as is having healthy staples on hand. Fresh lettuce, avocados, nuts & seeds, and lemons are just a few items that I believe should always be on your grocery list. It’s also helpful to have some cooked grains (like quinoa, buckwheat, or brown rice) and some cooked legumes (like lentils or beans) in your fridge at all times to incorporate into a meal. When you’ve got the basics on hand, a full-meal salad like this one, bursting with protein, fiber, healthy fats, and antioxidants, comes together in no time at all.

For the salad (serves 1):

2-3 leaves of romaine lettuce (or any other lettuce), washed and chopped

Heaping scoop of cooked brown rice, ideally cooked with some turmeric

Heaping scoop of cooked adzuki beans (or other type of bean)

Half an avocado

2 Tablespoons raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

Optional: 4 or five little dollops of soft goat cheese (chevre)

For the cumin vinaigrette, whisk the following ingredients together in a small dish:

2 Tablespoons extra virgin, cold-pressed olive oil

2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar

½ teaspoon cumin powder

Directions: While you’re preparing the lettuce and re-heating the rice & beans with a little splash of water on the stovetop, toast the pepitas in a small oven-safe dish in your toaster oven on 300F. No longer than 5-10 minutes. You could also use a stovetop pan on medium heat.

Assemble the salad ingredients in a bowl, topping with the avocado, pepitas, and goat cheese (if using). Drizzle the cumin vinaigrette over everything, toss together and enjoy!

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