Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Winter menu: Delicious salads

Orange sesame coleslaw : Coleslaw is one of my favorite salads ever, and somehow, the idea of adding slices of orange, red pepper and toasted sesame seeds makes it even more appealing to me. (via FatFree Vegan Kitchen)

A moment of honesty. May all those who vowed to eat a healthy diet and adopt a generally healthier lifestyle in 2014 raise their hands.... (*raising hand*) It's one of those ubiquitous resolutions that everyone seems to strive for, but only few can truly maintain. Why is it so? I think I've finally found the answer.

To me, December is the ultimate month of indulgence. There are those long wintery nights spent at home, reading great books or watching riveting movies, preferably with a box of chocolate truffles nearby. There are the Christmas markets with their tempting (and rather unhealthy) selection of mulled wine, wursts and candy apples. And finally, the Christmas and New Year's Eve and all the parties and gatherings so typical for that time of year, with their own lot of delicacies (Gingerbread cookies. Mom's 5-layer generous cake. Eggnog. Shall I continue?). By the end of the year, I'm usually in a sort of food coma, and I don't even care. That's what holidays are made for. Indulging.

However, each feast has to come to an and. And it should come as no surprise that after all this gargantuan feasting, there comes the day of reconing. It's the day when I leave my comfy sweatpants behind, and face the reality of my favorite skinny jeans. The moment when I vow to never ever touch a gingerbread cookie. Ever. And that, in my opinion, is the biggest problem. The change I'm craving is too drastic. Going from devouring a plate of cookies in mere minutes, to eating one stick of celery for lunch, is a surefire way to fail, and to feel bad about myself.

So this year, I've decided to adopt a different approach. I'm not going to torture myself with a gym subscription. (I hate gyms. Always have, always will). And I'm definitely not going to set specific numbers for me to achieve. No, no, no. This year I want to forget the dieting (after all, it took me so long to recover from this one last disastrous attempt). What I want is to focus on being kind to myself and my body. That means eating a more balanced diet (fruit, veggies and chocolate), working out at home (and working out because it makes me feel happy) and generally being grateful for my body that I'm fortunate to have.

And to give myself a necessary jolt of inspiration, I've scoured Pinterest for the most appealing and deliciously-looking winter salads. I'm printing out all these recipes as we speak, and I can't wait to give them a try and discover my favorites. Do you want to join me?

I would love to know: what is your approach to healthy living? Which elements are most important to you? Food? Exercising? Drinking water? Let me know in the comments. In the mean time, Bon Appétit!

Composed beet, fennel and orange salad: Due to the ginormous beet harvest my parents produced in their garden, I can see a lot of beet salads in my near future. To make this one, I'm even willing to give fennel a second chance (I really hated it as a kid). (via Lemon Fire Brigade)

Avocado lime chickpea salad: I only discovered the benefits of avocados three or four years ago, but to say that I've developed an obsession with these green babies would be a serious understatement. If I could, I would literally put avocados in every. single. meal I prepare. Also, the fact that this salad is the easiest and the quickest to prepare of all adds bonus points in my book. (via Merry Thought)

Red cabbage and mango slaw: Another slaw that will probably make my day when I prepare it. It's chock-full of super foods, healthy and delicious, but also colorful and pretty just to look at. What's not to love? (via Tartine and apron strings)

Arugula-apple salad with carrot ribbons and walnut-miso dressing: Another colorful and pretty option. I can only imagine how delicious would the marriage of sweet apples with tart arugula be. And the carrot ribbons? Sweet! (via The Recipe Renovator)

Beet, carrot and pomegranate salad: Believe it or not, I've only tasted my very first pomegranate ever over the Christmas. I had it in my smoothie, I had it all by itself and I had it all over my tablecloth (note to self: it stains!). I like the idea of mixing pomegranate seeds with beets (again!) and carrots. And did you see those pretty colors? (Yes, I'm the person who appreciates the beauty of a plate as much as the taste of a dish!) Perfection! (via Foodie Crush)

Kale chickpea greek salad: Between kale, red onions, chickpeas and feta cheese, this salad really packs the punch. After all, any salad with red onions and feta (obsessed!) is a winner in my book! (via Family Fresh Cooking)

Winter chop chop: You've probably already noticed that I love colorful salads. The more the merrier. What can I say? I love surrounding myself with pretty things! And if they are as healthy and delicious as they are pretty? Now that's a win-win situation! Lettuce, persimmons, red onions, pear...oh my! (via With style and grace).

Winter salad with clementine dressing and vanilla bean candied walnuts: Clementine walnut: I surely do love clementines in my morning smoothie, but I've never thought of putting them in a salad. But after seeing this delicious Bon Appétit version, I was seriously tempted to give it a try. And then I discovered this miracle. With vanilla bean candied wallnuts. And my heart literally stopped. This has definitely landed on top of my list of recipes to try. Immediately. (via Rachel cooks)

Chickpea, pumpkin seed and feta salad: And here come chickpeas and feta again. I've never tasted these two together, but I'm pretty sure that when I do, I'm in for a treat! (via Eating Rules)

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  1. I'm going to jump on your healthy eating bandwagon and try some of these lovely looking salads. I ate way too much over the holidays and can't fit into any of my clothes!! Thanks for recipe ideas :)

  2. Ivana @ Macarons and PearlsJanuary 9, 2014 at 8:02 AM

    I know that feeling only too well, Debra! When you're trying to put on your favorite jeans / skirt / t-shirt, and it simply doesn't work. Awful. Please, do let me know if you try any of these recipes: I'd love to hear your opinion!
    Have a lovely day!

  3. Oh my mouth is totally watering over some of these delicious looking salads especially that beet, carrot and pomegranate salad. I think we really were separated at birth. I totally hate gyms as well. Being kind to your body is really the best way to go. And you're so lucky that you can take advantage of the fresh produce from your parents garden. I really hope to be able to work out again in a fuller capacity soon. It really enhances one's overall well being.

    Rowena @ rolala loves

  4. Ohhhh I'm so hungry now! They look so delicious!

    XO Imke

    -PS: I'm hosting a give-away on my blog right now; you can win five gorgeous Rosewhole items, picked by me! It would be amazing if you joined :)

  5. All these look so yummy! I will be trying some of these delicious recipes. Thank you for sharing! :)

    Feel free to visit my blog as well! You will find topics such as health, beauty, NYC fashion, personal growth and motivation between others! <3


    New Blog Post: Is Your Hair Cut The Right One For You?

  6. Love this post Ivana, you have selected the most delicious looking salads, I could skip mains and prefer going for these colorful healthy gems. Like you, I love anything with avocados, chickpeas and feta. I am most definitely going to try a few of these out. Thanks. Thanks for sharing your fashionable thoughts on my last post. Happy Weekend!

  7. Winter salads- brilliant! I'll need to print some of these out before my next trip to the grocery store.

    I love this post so much- fruits, vegetables, and chocolate :) You're right. It should be more about a balance and not deprivation.

    Also, I laughed out loud over every feast having to come to an end ;)


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