The half-year resolutions I made for myself on July 1st are coming along swimmingly. I know it’s only been 5 days – hard to be too impressed – but I see that things are starting to change. Since Sunday, I:
~ Took two one-hour hikes this week and have another one with a friend on the books for Friday. I may not make it to my goal of four times per week, but it’s better than my usual “zero” times.
~ Spoke my truth and said “no” to a minor July 4th event.
~ Cooked more than usual this week without being cranky about it. I discovered a great new-to-me marinade that has no sugar. I used it twice – once with chicken breasts and once with try-tip beef. And I created a new recipe (see below).
~ Decluttered spices, my underthings drawer and my Pinterest boards – a thorough virtual decluttering that was strangely satisfying.
~ Have not been “shoulding all over myself” as reader Michelle puts it (thank you, Michelle, having this line in my head not only helps me stop “shoulding” but it also makes me laugh every time I think of it).
~ Read lots this week. Gone Girl is cleverly written, and engaging. I am close to being done with it and that makes me sad!
~ Had a date night on Sunday. Bill and I dined at a local restaurant on their gorgeous outdoor patio. It was a lovely, lovely evening. Going out gave me a chance to wear a new maxi skirt I purchased at a TART outlet for $25.00 last weekend.
It’s a great vibrant color. It’s not fuchsia – too purply. And it’s not magenta – not purply enough. I think it’s closest to Pantone’s Lilac Rose. What do you think?
I added a turquoise colored multi-strand necklace, a black Banana Republic T-shirt (my favorite T-shirt ever), thrifted denim jacket and Jackie Ohh Ray-Bans. I carried the Longchamp Pilage I bought in Lucerne. I love that bag but it’s hard to find things in it; like a tote bag version of a black hole.
July 4th, we attended a barbecue here in Kenwood. I was not in a social mood at all (thanks, peri-menopausal hormones) but once I got there and saw my girlfriends, my anti-social mood quickly disappeared. Thank goodness for girlfriends. What would I do without them?
The barbecue was a potluck. I debated for days over what to bring. It needed to be something low-carb that I could eat and something that wouldn’t get weird in warm weather.
I surprised myself by coming up with a brand new recipe for a salad. Really, I did not consult cookbooks or the internet or anything! This does not happen to me very often.
Here is the recipe*, enough for a big crowd. Divide for a smaller batch.
2 medium sized heads of cauliflower cut into small florets
1 cup cherry tomatoes
1/2 cup diced red onion
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup diced salami
1/2 cup monterey jack – cut into very small cubes
1-15 ounce can of artichoke hearts packed in water, cut into bite sized pieces
1-15 ounce can of black olives, sliced
1/2 cup diced pepperoncinis – seed them if you don’t want your salad spicy
About a 1/4 to 1/2 cup Newman’s Own Family Recipe Italian salad dressing
Place the florets in a microwave safe dish and cover with cling wrap. No need to add water since you just washed them. Microwave until fork tender. This took my microwave about 4 minutes. I cooked the florets in two batches for a uniform doneness. Make sure you don’t over cook the cauliflower or it will get mushy. It should still be a little firm but not raw.
Once the florets are cooked, dump them onto a couple of paper towels to absorb moisture. I usually cover them with another paper towel, then let them sit for half an hour or more.
When the florets have dried, place them in a bowl and refrigerate.
Meanwhile, cut up your salami, vegetables, and cheese and set aside.
About an hour or two before serving, add all ingredients, except the salad dressing to the florets. Mix together well. At this point, decide if you want to add more of something. Does it need more cheese? Maybe another few cherry tomatoes? Tailor it to your tastes.
Now it’s time to add the salad dressing. I don’t have an accurate measurement for you. Add a little at a time – maybe 1/4 cup to start out with. You don’t want to over do it because it will get too soupy.
Stir well and cover. Place in the refrigerator. Stir again before serving.