Friday, February 21, 2014

Wilted Brussels Sprouts Salad (and a week of taking care of myself!)

I wrote this blog post as part of a movement by Weight Watchers to encourage people to remember that loving yourself starts with taking care of your health everyday. Though I was compensated for my time and commitment, all views, positive and negative, are my own. #lovehealthyme #wwsponsored
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 Every once in a while, I get a wild hair and decide to go completely healthy.
Do you ever do that? I know I can't be the only one...

If you've ever spent much time on my blog, you probably wouldn't necessarily think it, but I actually serve very healthy meals to my family on a daily basis.
But sometimes, I get a little out of control with comfy dishes like this or desserts like this. And then it's like a snowball, well, you know.
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So it's nice to throw together a delicious salad like this one to remind myself that I really do enjoy eating healthy.
This salad is super simple to prepare and involves only a handful on ingredients...nothing complicated here!
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I used both spinach and brussels sprouts in this salad and really enjoyed the combination. I tossed it with a warm and tangy vinaigrette made with apple cider vinegar, then topped it with some crispy bacon and pepitas.
The warm dressing lightly wilts the greens, which gives it the most perfect texture.
The recipe for this tasty salad will be at the bottom of this post.

Speaking of healthy, on Valentine's Day, as part of the Weight Watchers Simple Start plan, I embarked on a two week commitment to doing one simple thing for my health each day.
Well, it's been a week, and I must say that I've more than enjoyed these things I've committed to.

One of my absolute favorite things to do is go for a sunset beach walk with the two loves in my life. It's way too easy to get busy and not make it happen, but we went for it on Monday and I'm so glad we did! There's just no substitute for this kind of quality time.
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When I'm trying to eat healthy, I like to buy a bunch of fresh veggies to prepare and have at the ready in the fridge. This week I sliced up some cucumber, radishes, and blanched green beans and tossed them with some fresh lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. This is my go-to healthy afternoon snack instead of reaching for that cookie.
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Whenever I go shopping, I totally aim for scoring that primo parking spot right up front. Seriously, it almost borders on competitive. 
But, since this was my first week of commitment to being healthy, I thought one good way of doing that was to actually shoot for the farthest parking spot on my weekly Target trip.
Not only did I live to tell about it, but what I learned is that the shopping cart corrals are located towards the back of the parking lot, making it more convenient for me to throw my little guy in as we head towards the store. Score!
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And because he's so cute and eating a healthy snack, I just had to throw this one in.
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My husband always asks me why I don't relax while the baby is napping. Well, the answer is a resounding, because there's always so much to do!
Lucky me, in honor of this week, which is all about taking care of me, I had the perfect excuse to do just that.
Smutty chic lit and neglected journal plus comfy bed equals total relaxation.
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After a week of making myself and my health a priority, I must say that I do a feel a bit different...present and more focused. I also feel more in charge of my body, making healthier choices.

To reward myself for completing the first week of my commitment to a healthy me, I've made myself an appointment for a mani pedi. 
This is something I could definitely get used to!

Wilted Brussels Sprouts Salad
serves 6

1 lb. brussels sprouts, washed and trimmed
4 oz. spinach, washed
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
⅓ cup apple cider vinegar
2 Tbsp dijon mustard
1 Tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 slices crispy cooked bacon, roughly chopped
¼ cup toasted pepitas, or nut of your preference

Thinly slice the brussels sprouts crosswise into strips. Repeat with the spinach leaves. Place the brussels sprouts and spinach in a large bowl, and toss to combine. Set aside.
In a small saucepan, whisk together the garlic, apple cider vinegar, mustard, sugar, salt, and pepper over medium heat. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil while whisking constantly. Bring to a simmer, and cook until the mixture thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Pour over the brussels sprouts mixture, and toss to combine. Serve the salad warm, garnished with bacon and pepitas.
Store leftovers in the refrigerator and serve cold.


10 comments:

  1. I love love love that you parked so far away! Haha I try to get the closest parking spot too on campus and last week I actually parked in the second lot much farther away. Those extra steps do add up to making you feel better. Also, I love the fact that you prepped your veggies, I'm going to try that.

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    1. Ha! Yes, it's the little things that add up ;) Thanks for your comment Aly!

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  2. Girl - you make brussels sprouts look delicious! I need to try this recipe.

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    1. Thanks Lynda, this is one of my favorite ways to eat Brussels sprouts and so easy!

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  3. I have never thought of brussel sprouts like this! I must try this soon! Thanks!

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    1. Thanks for your comment Kirste, I hope you enjoy!

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  4. I love Brussels sprouts! I never thought about making a salad with them. Thanks for sharing the recipe, I can't wait to try!

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    1. Thanks for your comment Ashley! This is probably my favorite way to eat Brussels sprouts and so easy!

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  5. I am always a sucker for brussel sprouts and will have to give this recipe a try! It looks amazing. Yes, sometimes a girl just has to snuggle up in bed with some good chic lit. Have a great week!

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    1. Ha! Thanks Andrea, I hope you enjoy it as much as I do when you try it :)

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