Sometimes life throws you curveballs. I have been dealing with some pretty unpleasant personal issues the last few weeks so I apologize for my lack of presence here. I find when I am upset I need a lot of headspace to process everything going on. There just hasn’t been room in my brain lately to dedicate to being creative. Sometimes everyone needs a break from everything to take stock of where they are in life. I’m hoping that I’ve put myself on the right path and ready to get back to my normal. Anyway enough unpleasantness, let’s get on to the good stuff.
My sister came for a visit last week and it was great to spend some time with her one on one. Our lives have been so full of kids, husbands and taking care of our mother that it’s been a long time since we just got to sit and talk like friends. She is 11 years older than me and we lead really different lives.
Growing up she was the one that took care of me when my parents were too caught up in their own personal battles to pay me much attention. I know I wouldn’t be the person I am today if she hadn’t done such a great job of protecting me from some of the ugliness of my parent’s marriage.
I had a great time showing her around Portland and taking her to some of my favorite restaurants, and we spent a day in Seattle as well. We ate ourselves silly and still didn’t get to do a tenth of what I wanted to.
Now that I’m back to reality it’s time to eat a little cleaner and this time of year it’s pretty effortless to do. This is my very favorite thing to eat and I never get tired of it. I have to admit that I am a little tired of all the zoodle recipes I see on Pinterest. I don’t like to think of replacing pasta with vegetables, I love pasta and would never give it up but I do find that I can’t eat a lot of it anymore without suffering the consequences. It makes me a little bit sad to see that pasta and bread have been banned from peoples diets. I like to think there is a place for every food in moderation as long as it’s balanced with lots of healthy choices you should be able to indulge and eat whatever you enjoy.
This is the easiest of summer salads. A combination of my favorite flavors some thinly shaved squash, a little bit of sweet corn, some vibrant cherry tomatoes and some chopped avocado to add some substance. It’s lightly dressed with a little sherry vinegar, a drizzle of good quality olive oil and a sprinkling of sea salt. You could easily add some shredded chicken or poached shrimp but I like it just the way it is, super fresh, simple and delicious.
- 2 zucchini or summer squash of your choice (about ½ pound)
- 1 ear of fresh corn, shucked and cleaned (about ¾ cup of kernels)
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes, quartered
- ½ avocado, cut into ¼-inch dice
- ¼ cup fresh basil
- `1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 small clove of garlic, grated with a microplane
- salt and pepper to taste
- Cut the ends off the squash and using a vegetable peeler, shave the squash into long ribbons and place into a large bowl. Using a sharp knife cut the kernels off the corn and add to the bowl along with the cherry tomatoes, avocado and basil. In a small bowl combine the sherry vinegar, olive oil and grated garlic and season with salt and pepper. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss lightly to coat. Taste and adjust salt and pepper to your liking.