When it is this cold out, the only food I want is hot or at the very least warm. We can live on raw salads all summer long, but for the most part, in the winter salads make me feel cold and hungry, wanting more.
As my official entry in the Olivia’s Organics Healthier Holiday Recipe Contest, I decided to make a beet and spinach salad with some fun toppings, wheat berries, toasted, spiced walnuts, and an orange-yogurt dressing.
Ingredients (serves 2)
4 cups Olivia’s Organics baby spinach
2 large beets, boiled, peeled, and chopped into half moons
1 cup shelled walnuts
1 cup wheat berries, prepared according to package directions
3/4 cup European style plain yogurt
juice of 1 orange
1 tsp each brown sugar and cayenne pepper
I started by boiling, peeling, cutting, and setting aside the beets. Next, I toasted the walnuts in a frying pan on low heat for a few minutes, tossing them at the end with a drizzle of olive oil, brown sugar, and cayenne.
While the nuts and beets cooled, I mixed up a simple but flavorful dressing made of plain yogurt and freshly squeeze orange juice. This idea was based on a dressing we had at The Citizen Public House last weekend, and it is now definitely a favorite of mine. So easy!
I had my wheat berries soaking in hot water for the entire day, so I actually didn’t even cook them. I like them to be very chewy, but if you prefer to cook them, the package directions should do the trick.
Once everything else was prepped, I simply wilted the baby spinach in a frying pan with about 1/4 cup of water. I wilted it down for quite awhile, but you can obviously feel free to cook the spinach as little or as much as you would like.
When it was time to plate, I made a mound of baby spinach and carefully laid the beets across the top, followed by a sprinkling of wheat berries. Around the edges of the plate, I sprinkled toasted walnuts and drizzled the orange-yogurt dressing.
This is a salad that stands up to the cold, tastes great, and offers quite the nutritional punch with lots of fiber, vitamins, and some protein as well. Beets and spinach together really make this a super salad that is made more lively by the creamy orange dressing. If you need a little more flavor, add some honey! This recipe could easily be increased and served on a big white serving platter to be passed around as a starter to a holiday meal, or like we did, eaten as a meal on its own.
I hope you like my entry for the contest! What are some of your healthier holiday secrets or recipe ideas?