Post-vacation salad + all the things green

Hi! Hope you’re enjoying your Monday <3

Bella and Caro wanted me to tell you how much I missed them.

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(Bella did not want me to tell you that you can see marinara sauce in her beard from the lunchtime pizza she “borrowed” from Liv’s plate while I was upstairs putting her down for her nap.)

My favorite people in their St. Patrick’s Day green:


(The Pilot and his mustache are always festive. Livi’s shirt says, “Daddy’s pot of gold”)

As much fun as everything was this past week, it feels sooooo good to be back home. I missed hanging out with my little sidekick, walking around the house with disheveled hair and unmatched socks (which I could technically do at the hotel, but we were never there!), taking time to drink coffee and enjoy homemade breakfast, work out (!! that fell off the radar the past few days), and salad. 

Salad is totally a verb. It’s a sport, too.

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In the spirit of the holiday (and because my mom asked me to “make something green” to contribute to tonight’s feast), I decided to take it over the top with an “all things green” roasted veggie chopped salad.

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(This could also be dubbed “the stinky salad.” Broccoli alone has a very fragrant smell, but combined with asparagus AND brussels? Oooooh wee. There’s a 72-hour period until we can have visitors.)

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I also grabbed some of the Trader Joe’s holiday goodies to share with the fam:

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 As far as the salad goes, here’s the combo:

I roasted chopped asparagus, bussels sprouts, zucchini (3), and a bag of organic broccoli (still frozen), drizzled with olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic powder for 30 minutes (flip and re-season halfway through). Next, I stirred in two cans of artichoke hearts (drained and sliced), the juice of half a lemon, 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil, and a sprinkle of cayenne.

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The whole thing was topped with grated manchego cheese. I think it will be a nice side for the corned beef and grilled cabbage the madre is making tonight ?

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For the first time in a few weeks, I was actually inspired while I was grocery shopping today!  Lately, I’ve felt pretty blah about grocery shopping and meal planning, and feel like a vacation (with new sights and new tastes) yielded some much-needed inspiration.I always come back from trips with new ideas for flavor combinations and ingredients I’d long forgotten. 

Here’s what I’m excited to make this week:

-A berry-banana bread with a crumble topping (inspired by the baked goodies that surrounded me for the past week)

-Potato, egg and veggie frittata (inspired by our tapas meal at Boqueria)

-Sweet chili grilled chicken (inspired by the breakfast buffet at the MGM. You can have sushi and comfort food with the usual breakfast suspects.)

-Sweet potato gratin (inspired by the Mesa Grill menu, even though I didn’t actually order it)

What do you do when you’re in a meal planning rut? Are there any trips that inspired you to make or try a new dish?

Favorite green recipe?? ?

PS. If you’re looking for a cocktail to make tonight, this one is THE BEST.

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