Posts filed under ‘Roamings’
No fall series would be complete without some pictures of the beautiful New England foliage I am lucky enough to enjoy! Whether it is on my drive or bike ride to work, on a day hike near Boston, or just a walk around my neighborhood, seeing this beautiful display of color reminds me of how lucky I am to get to enjoy such a great city! Hope you are enjoying the leaves (if you have any left!) and some great fall treats!
Question: What other fall foods do you enjoy this time of year? Feel free to share some favorite recipes!
Missed the series? Check out the recipe collections below!
“It’s like camping, kinda.” – Momma Newcomb
3 days ago, Hurricane Sandy washed away the shoreline that I call home. The pictures that flood my Facebook newsfeed and flash across the NY Times homepage are heartbreaking. Images of the waves and wind tearing apart the coast.Pictures of landmarks and homes completely underwater. Photographs of the lines created at functional gas stations, where families wait for hours on end for a few gallons of gas to fuel their generator. The pictures in this post are courtesy of my Dad, who snapped phone pics as he used his truck to help friends recover what they could from their flooded homes.
My family is lucky. Our house is okay, escaping damage from the storm and flooding. My dad has a generator that he has been using to power his and a neighbor’s refrigerator. My mom heeded my seasoned Florida grandparents’ advice and stocked up on canned goods and flashlights. They are making do with their propane grill meals and lantern-powered card games.
Others were not so lucky. So many families lost their possessions, their cars, or their homes. A few lost their lives. Who knew that a storm could be so devastating. The latest number estimate is $50 billion dollars of damage, but that doesn’t even begin to describe what was lost.
It will take days to restore power to the thousands who remain in the alternate and isolated reality created by this storm. It will take months to clean up the obvious debris that now litters beach fronts and side streets, and years to restore the boardwalks and beaches to the state that drew so many tourists each summer.
While there is so much to mourn, the positive messages and stories of neighbors working together provide a ray of encouragement. Stories of those with houses, food, water, and generators reaching out to neighbors in need. Pictures of board games and camp fires from people making the best of their situation. These provide me with hope that the recovery efforts will only make my home stronger.
My life, on the other hand, has been normal. Unremarkable. I never lost power, I witnessed no flooding or damage in my neighborhood, and hardly felt the immediate power of the hurricane. It is so odd that my world spins as normal while the lives of my family and friends have been put on hold. If you are like me and are watching these images from afar with a heavy heart, there are ways that you can help! Pray for those that lost so much, for fast resettlement of those stranded, for restoration of power and water. If you have resources, consider donating. Text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Text the word STORM to 80888 to make a $10 donation to the Salvation Army Disaster Relief. Text the word GIVEUSA to 777444 to donate $10 to the World Vision effort. If text donations aren’t your style, check out the website for each of these organizations to donate that way.
The recovery of the Jersey Shore that I know and love will be long and arduous, but the positivity and strength displayed by those like my mom remind me of the hope that shines through the darkness.
There is nothing better for the body, mind and soul than spending a week relaxing on the beach. I have visited my family, who transplanted an hour south of Tampa about 8 years ago, several times and feel a comforting sense of familiarity when I return. There are always new places to explore and memories to make, but my goal was not sight-seeing this time. Instead, my days were structured around beach reading, studying, and hanging out with my grandparents! The best part about the beaches in the Sarasota area is that they all have their own character. You can pick the feel of your beach depending on your mood that day, all without ever having to go to far!
Lucky for us, the #1 rated beach in the US is located less than a half hour’s drive from where my family lives. Siesta Key is known for its white sand and crystalline blue water. The quartz sand is powder soft and never gets hot, which makes for great beach strolls. The beach front is also huge, so the crowds that the recent publicity has drawn can be handled quite well. The downside of Siesta Key is the parking. The lot fills up before noon, leaving cars circling for emptying spots like hawks. My grandparents have learned, and so now we always head to this beach early. We arrived by 9am, with newspaper and book in hand, and enjoyed the less crowded views of the Gulf, the warm morning sun, and the soft stretches of sand.
While Siesta Key may get the fame, the local beaches are an equally good option. The beach along the Venice fishing pier is the best local beach for swimming. The sand shelf drops off quickly, but the Gulf waters are warm and usually calm, which makes swimming pleasant. The beach grass and fishing pier also add some nice scenery, and there is great bird watching as the pelicans flock to see what share they can catch.
If you like nature and solitude, Caspersen’s is the place to find it. Along the side of the peninsula, the beach is narrow and the water edge is lined with huge rocks. Only one or two rows of chairs and towels can fit, which keeps the private beach feeling. The rocks also make excellent nets for shark tooth hunting, which is this beach’s claim to fame.
After a hot day at the beach, nothing beats a soft serve ice cream cone. My favorite Florida treat is the orange soft serve ice cream at Nokomis Groves. They also have flavors like lime, pineapple, vanilla, and chocolate, but the orange is the biggest draw. While my favorite combination is orange and vanilla, I branched out to try the pineapple swirl. While it was tasty, I didn’t like that the pineapple overpowered the orange. I will stick to my favorite on my next visit! There is always a line, but it moves quickly and is worth the wait. You can also get fresh Florida citrus, citrus-inspired foodie treats, and fresh squeezed juices in the attached market.
The best part of visiting Southwestern Florida is getting to see the sunset over the ocean. As an East Coast girl, this is something that I always love, seeing the flaming sun plunge into the cool ocean. The Venice Beach is an excellent spot to watch the sunset, but the Nokomis Inlet is another great option if you don’t want to sit in the sand.
Writing this post and looking through my vacation pictures makes me long to be at the beach instead of facing a long week of school and studying! Good thing the weather has been unseasonably warm, or I might face true sunshine withdrawal!
Hello from sunny Florida! Even though this winter has been mild, there is still never a need to rationalize a week spent in the Florida sunshine. Add in a visit with your amazing grandparents, uncle, aunt and cousin, and then there is even more reason to escape to the sun! I have spent my mornings squeezing in some studying, afternoons soaking up some sun at the beach, and evenings running as my Grandma makes amazing dinners. I could get used to this! Here are some pictures from my Tuesday, and look forward to a travel post on Southwest Florida when I get home!
Grandma is an oatmeal fan as well, so I have still been able to enjoy my favorite breakfast! It is strawberry season in Plant City, FL, so the berries are abundant and cheap in the grocery store. I love them mixed in with some banana and cinnamon into plain oats!
We headed out early for the number 1 beach in the US: Siesta Key! If you don’t get there early, you are unlikely to get a parking spot, so we spent the morning reading and watching the beach slowly fill up. Nothing like a morning in the sun and a swim in the Gulf to work up an appetite! I enjoyed a great wrap: basil hummus, sunflower seeds, sun dred tomatoes, tomatoes, and baby spinach. We have been adding spinach or field greens to all of our sandwiches or wraps, and always include a toss salad with dinner to make sure we get in our greens! Lunch was rounded out with a handful or two of potato chips (I am on vacation!) an apple, and lots of water, of course!
After we got our fill of sun and sand, we headed to Nokomis Groves for their famous orange soft serve ice cream! This is one of my favorite parts of my visits to Florida. The orange-vanilla swirl cone is like a creamsicle, but better since it is made with fresh, Florida oranges. I was adventurous this time and got pineapple as the other swirled half and loved it! There is nothing better than a cone of soft serve ice cream on a hot afternoon.
My grandparents are well-traveled and love good food, so they like to be adventurous in trying restaurants. One of their favorite finds is the Curry Creek Cafe in Nokomis, FL. It is easy to pass by on the outside, but this place should not be missed. The cuisine is a fusion of classic Indonesian and Florida seafood, and the service is incredible.
We all started with a house salad, bread and olive tapenade. The salad is incredibly fresh and tasty, and the bread comes warmed from the oven.
For dinner, I enjoyed the Spicy Eggplant with Grouper cheeks, covered in an amazing spicy, tomato based sauce. Yes, that is from the fish’s head! My grandparents said that the grouper cheek is incredibly tender and well cooked at this restaurant, and so I had to be somewhat adventurous! This was incredibly spicy, but the rice and cool cucumber salad on the side tempered it. I could hardly put my fork down, this was so good! The chef himself came out to see how we liked our meal, and I tried to get the secret for the recipe I liked it so much!
We enjoyed watching the sunset over the inlet after dinner, a peaceful end to a day of beautiful weather and good eats! Hope that you are enjoying your week, whether it be routine or vacation!
Question: What is the weirdest food you have ever eaten?
Yesterday was a very special occasion: I got to spend the day at home and meet my best friends’ brand new baby! I was lucky enough to have the day off from my scheduled clinical classes, so I drove home Monday night and am leaving bright and early today to head back for Boston! A quick trip indeed, but I made the most of my day! Here is a peak into a day where I’m not stuck behind my desk:
I woke up early to get some studying done, and so was already a cup of coffee and a few pages into studying before breakfast rolled around. I couldn’t pass up a family breakfast now, so I took a study break to enjoy some banana bread oatmeal with my parents before Dad left for work!
Mom took the day off, so we had a lunch date to the Loving Hut in Matawan, NJ. We were excited to try out a totally vegan lunch place, since Mom is trying to stick to a more plant-based diet since our vegan challenge. This lunch was a treat!
We split spring rolls for an appetizer – tofu, carrots, cucumber, and lettuce wrapped in rice paper with a peanut dipping sauce.
For lunch, we each ordered a sandwich and then traded halves. Mom got a Portobello panini, which came on a great seedy bread with avocado, a chipotle veganaise, and a side arugula salad. I ordered the Philly cheesesteak, which was soy sauce-marinated soy protein with mushrooms, onions, and a nutritional yeast vegan cheese sauce, served on a great toasty bun with sweet potato fries. We split the sandwiches and sides so we could try a bit of everything!
Since it was Valentine’s Day, we couldn’t pass up dessert, so we ordered a piece of Coconut Cake to share. It was a bit heavy for my tastebuds, but that didn’t stop us from polishing off our shared piece. Mom and I both agreed – all vegan food should be this flavorful and creative! If you live in NJ or near a Loving Hut, definitely check it out. There is some really great food to be tried!
I can’t mention meeting a little one without sharing some pictures! Baby Ben was the point of my visit home… It killed me to not be able to be home through labor, delivery, and get a chance to visit in the hospital, but it was nice to be able to be the first house guest! I got to spend an hour holding him as he slept, giving her time to unpack, change, and relax! I am so excited for both of my friends, and cannot believe that they are parents! I am honored to hold the title “Aunt Jen” and look forward to watching this cutie grow in front of our eyes!
After baby bonding, Mom and I spent some girl bonding time. We picked up some necessities at Costco, and then got manicures and pedicures. We came home to enjoy a glass of red wine while waiting for Dad for dinner!
After a large lunch, we kept dinner light and healthy. We roasted some broccoli and cauliflower with tumeric, garlic and onion, served with a side of brown rice pilaf (a mixture of brown rice, sprouted beans, leeks and pine nuts). My portion was pretty small after such a huge and filling lunch, but there were a few unpictured broccoli florets speared from my Dad’s plate!
A small dinner left room for a small dessert – a scoop of mint chocolate chip ice cream with sliced strawberries, enjoyed while watching Chopped with my mom. I’ll be a more studious med student
Question: Did you love your veggies and your sweets this Valentine’s Day? Who did you spend your day with?
While I was at home with my family, I got to explore two different markets with my mom! We went to the Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia at the beginning of my vacation, and the Columbus Market in South Jersey towards the end of my time at home. Both were such fun experiences, and were very different despite both being Amish markets!
The Reading Terminal Market has been an integral part of Philadelphia since the late seventeenth century. It was established so that farmers, fisherman, and craftsmen could come together to exchange their goods. Today, it is more well-known for it’s fun lunch establishments and specialty ingredients stores, but still invokes the original purpose of mixing of goods and ideas.
It was so much fun to weave through the aisles, checking out traditional Amish canned goods, butcher shops with locally raised meat, candy shops with Pennsylvania Dutch classics, and people watching to find an odd collection of Philadelphia businessmen, tourists, and country farmers.
My favorite find of the day was a spice shop that sold bulk bags of lesser known spices, loose leaf teas, and fancy roasted coffees. I picked up some allspice and garam masala, as well as some loose leaf tea and a half pound of Frangelica roasted coffee beans. My mom and I went to the store twice, not getting everything we wanted the first time! The other highlight of this market was the prepared food. At noon, the indoor market was flooded with 9-to-5′ers on their lunch break, looking for a quick bite. You could find every time of cuisine, from traditional Pennsylvania Dutch to Cajun, Soul Food to Middle Eastern, American to Italian, and more. We circled the market twice before making up our minds on lunch – there were just too many options to choose from!
We settled on crepes, where my mom enjoyed a seafood crepe and I got a Mediterranean veggie. It was fun to sit at the counter and watch the guy make perfectly formed crepes one after the other, and it was even better to taste the delicious result! How such a thin crepe can be so light and fluffy is beyond my skill set, but has inspired me to learn how to make these delicious things myself!
Overall, I loved my experience at the Reading Terminal Market. I appreciated that it was indoors, so that you can get the fun market experience even throughout a cold winter. I also loved all of the specialty ingredients stores, and loved watching the mix of people flood past me.
Almost like book ends to my vacation, we visited the Columbus Farmer’s Market in Columbus, NJ before I left as well. If you described both of them to me, they would sound almost the same, but the experiences were so very different!
They both featured traditional Amish goods, like canned vegetables and jams, candies, baked goods, and traditional butchers, but the Columbus Market had a wider focus than just foods. They also sold handmade crafts, like intricately quilted pot holders, hand sewn table runners, country-style home decorations, and much more.
Beyond the Amish portion of the market, there were stores that sold all sorts of items at pretty good discounts. There was everything from an As Seen On TV shop to a discount scrapbook store, and everything in between. Outside, there are more tables set up with more typical market goods – perfume, knock off designer bags, hats, scarves, etc. Beyond that, there is a flea market that runs during the summer. We had fun exploring the indoor market, where we picked up a few bulk items, looked at all of the beautiful handiwork of the Amish crafts, and had a quick bite to eat.
Before leaving, we went to the true farmers part of the market. The produce was beautifully displayed in wooden baskets, and was remarkably cheap! Mom and I had a field day, picking up a bunch of fruits and vegetables to split between us. Even with self-restraint, I still ended up with at least four bags of squash, green beans, eggplant, potatoes, apples and oranges. I would love to go back in the summer at the peak of the NJ growing season!
Overall, I found the Columbus Market a better place to do food shopping. The prices on their produce were unbeatable, and the Amish bakery, butcher, and canned goods were amazing. There were not as many options, and the Amish are definitely not vegetarian friendly for lunch. (The only non-meat options were a soft pretzel or pizza.)
I had so much fun exploring both of these markets, and have come home loaded with some fun new spices and veggies to play with!
Step 1: Getting there
A bunch of my friends were carpooling to Lancaster, PA this past weekend for a wedding, and there was an extra spot in the car! I was so thankful to not have to take the bus or drive the 7+ hour journey alone. Road trips are a lot of fun with good friends, music, snacks, and jokes… The long trip didn’t necessarily fly by, but I enjoyed just hanging out in good company!
Step 2: Maintain your story
I was planning to be to Lancaster by 4 and Philly by 5:30, but traffic and a wrong exit or two put us a bit behind schedule. Chelsea’s boyfriend, Mike, picked me up around 6pm, and we hit Friday night traffic on the way into Philly. Mike told Chelsea he had a surprise for her and told her to be ready around 5 or 5:30, so she was starting to get mad that he was so late. He blamed it on work and traffic, but she wasn’t having any of it and was fuming when he told her his ETA was closer to 8pm. Good thing he is thick-skinned and held his ground without saying anything! My sister can get mean when she is angry! ;)
Step 3: Prepare for the surprise
After a long day of travel, I was elated to finally arrive at my sister’s doorstep. I stood on the stoop while Mike stood off to the side, where he could see the surprise but Chelsea couldn’t immediately see him. He called to get let in, and then we waited. Maybe it just felt like an eternity, or maybe she was taking her time to torture him for being late… but finally, she appeared. She recognized that it was me standing there, and froze in her tracks. She smiled and then just started sobbing. I had to remind her to come let us in out of the cold, and then we embraced. She continued to cry, so surprised, excited and shocked by my unannounced appearance. She then saw Mike, quickly apologizing for her reaction, realizing I was the reason he was late. I think her reaction to our surprise superseded any need for an apology he might have had.
Step 4: Enjoy your evening!
Since it was recently her 21st birthday, we headed to a local bar, The Draught Horse Pub, for a quick drink. We munched on bar food and caught up on how the surprise came to be, and simply enjoyed the reunion. The salty bar food and long car ride led to a quick headache for me, however, so our evening ended early. I may or may not have fallen asleep on my sister on the couch… such a cool older sister I am, huh?
Step 5: Make a belated birthday breakfast
Chelsea had called me earlier in the week to ask me about specific ingredients for a few of my recipes. I chuckled silently to myself when she told me she was going to make my sweet potato pancakes that Saturday! Little did she know… We still made the pancakes, and they were just as good as I remembered! If you haven’t tried these yet, please do. The spiced pecan butter makes the meal, and is good slathered on apple slices too!
Step 6: Keep the surprises rolling
We had so much fun with the reaction to the surprise of my arrival that Mike and I decided to keep the rest of the weekend plans as a surprise. We took her to Longwood Gardens Saturday afternoon, and enjoyed the spectacular balmy November day. We explored the fall foliage in some of the outdoor gardens, and admired the beautiful flowers and greenhouses indoors.
After, we enjoyed dinner with Mike’s family, and then finished the night off at Dave and Buster’s. No better way to celebrate being a legal adult than reliving childhood memories of Chuck E. Cheese, except this time with a few drinks and more gaming skill!
Step 7: Remember that we are sisters, not clones
The most important part of this weekend and the time we spent together was the chance to remember how similar and yet how different we are. We grew up like twins, both love to cook, love being outside in nature and yet are entranced by city living, and have similar senses of humor. Yet we are very distinct people, both talented in different areas and successful in our own way. My sister may admire me as an older sister, but she doesn’t fully realize how much I admire the young woman she is becoming. The things I love most about her are those that make her so different from me, and I hope she recognizes and appreciates those things in herself. I pray we can continue to learn from each other until we are hunched old ladies, and am thankful for the deep bond of friendship and sisterhood that we share.
New England fall – beautiful leaves, crisp air, and unpredictable weather. You learn quickly never to trust the weatherman up here, but it always a disappointment when the weather refuses to cooperate with your plans. What do you do when the camping adventure you had been planning for weeks gets rained out? You make the best of what you can!
We had planned to visit Wompatuck State Park for an overnight camping and day hike adventure. We were so excited for ‘smores (which my phone can’t spell and caused a few giggles at “snores”) and campfires, stars and fall foliage. If it rains after you have set up, it is manageable. But if it is raining continuously for the afternoon evening, with high chances of thunderstorms, it is no fun. We decided to change our plans, and “camped” in my apartment instead! We cooked dinner together, planned our hiking adventure for the next day, made ‘smores over the gas burner of my stove, and watched the beginning of my favorite 80′s adventure movie, The Goonies. No campfire, no stars, but just as much fun.
We got up early the next morning for the long drive. Since we couldn’t camp, we decided to go somewhere a little more exotic, like New Hampshire! Some of the best hiking in New England is in New Hampshire’s White Mountains, and the drive was totally worth it. The fall foliage was at a peak, and the scenery even along the interstate was breathtaking. We literally stopped mid-conversation at times to verbally appreciate the beauty of the majestic surroundings. The parking lot for our trail was 7 miles off the interstate along a winding, bumpy park road. We left our car and were surprised at how much cooler it was just a few hours north of the city. We hoped we would stay warm enough hiking!
We followed the trail to Mt. Osceola, one of 48 four thousand footer’s in NH. The beginning of the path was treacherous, and we even questioned if it was the path. One of our friends fell immediately because of the wet leaves and rocks. She assured us that she was fine and wanted to keep going, so we forged ahead. We questioned the wisdom of continuing once again when we quickly reached a waterfall that we had to cross. A little more of a challenge than we had bargained for, but we were determined to have our hiking adventure! There were more stumbles and slips, streams to cross and boulders to climb as we made our way slowly up the mountain, but we persevered. A little less than 3 hours later, we made it to the top. It was worth the hike! The views of the surrounding White Mountains were breathtaking, especially with the fog rolling through the distance and the sunshine making feeble attempts to pull through. We were freezing (literally, it was probably only 30 degrees at the summit), but we explored the overlook for as long as we could stand it. We found a little bit of rock face that was more protected from the wind so we could enjoy our PB&J, and only headed back for the trail when we couldn’t feel our fingers, faces and toes. Note to self: next time, bring a hat!
Our original plan included the second summit, East Osceola, but our later start, cold fingers, and poor terrain told us to turn around. We descended the mountain much more quickly, but still had to be careful of the slippery rocks. It began to hail almost immediately after we left the summit, so we were really happy with our decision to cut our loop short. The hail stopped and the sun came out for a few more brief periods, allowing us to enjoy the full beauty of the colorful carpeting that seemed thicker around us than we we began the climb. There truly is nothing like New England fall.
Safely back at the car, we stretched our hurting knees (we’re too young to feel old!) and refueled on some snacks. The trail mix combo for this trip was a hit! Cinnamon Puffins, cocoa roasted almonds, peanuts, raisins, and honey roasted soy nuts. Even after this tasty snack, we were still hungry less than halfway through our drive home! We had covered quite a few miles that day (6.4 to be exact!) and a lot of elevation! We rewarded ourselves with a stop at a Manchester legend, the Red Arrow Diner. This place was tiny, and it was hopping! We had to wait for a bit for a table, but once again the patience was worth it. We all feasted on breakfast for dinner. The guys had the King’s breakfast, which took up two plates each! The girls were more modest in portion sizes, but still enjoyed homestyle eggs, hashbrowns and toast. No night drive would be complete without a little car karaoke on the way home, and a few stars viewed from the
sun moon roof!
Lesson learned from this weekend: you can plan all you want, but you can never fully be in control. So learn to go with the flow and enjoy the time in the company of great friends!
This post features an unexpected highlight of my weekend. Yesterday, I got to participate in the Harvest Festival sponsored by the Mattapan Food and Fitness Coalition. The MFFC sponsors a farmer’s market that runs from July – October in Mattapan, a predominately minority, low-income Boston neighborhood. This market features produce from local farms and urban community gardens, and offers a “double your benefits” program to food stamp recipients. They accept SNAP/WIC benefits and display an impressive array of beautiful seasonal produce.
I volunteered at the fair with two school mates as a part of SNAAC, my school’s nutrition interest group. Our job at the health fair was to provide a free blood pressure screening for interested community members. This was great and definitely helped me master my BP skills, but my favorite part was getting to talk to people! If anyone’s numbers were high, we talked to them about areas in their diet that could be improved (like switching from white to brown rice, or using lower sodium broth). If their numbers were within normal, we asked them if they thought they had a healthy diet and a regular exercise routine, and how they thought those factors affected their blood pressure. It was exciting to see so many people take charge of monitoring their own health, show interest in how to improve their health, and talk about how to cook and eat healthy food. I was reminded of important lessons of cultural sensitivity with food preferences (does anyone know a healthy plantain recipe? if so, please share!), of speaking slowly when there is a language barrier, and how much a smile and a handshake means when meeting someone new.
In light of my recent thinking (see here and here) about the chronic conditions that plague so many Americans, it was exciting to see a community driven movement to promote healthy lifestyles. Community members are standing up for their right to affordable healthy foods through this market and a neighborhood corner store project, as well as their right to health through fitness programs for youth and a myriad of other programs. I was so happy to be a part of their celebration of health that morning, and am thankful for the reminder of why I am putting so many hours in hunched over my desk each day.
I also bought some golden beets, which I am excited to experiment with later this week!
Question: Do you know of any health and fitness movements taking place in your community?
Figgy pudding. Fig Newtons. That used to be my only understanding of figs. And I was not a fan. That all changed when I ate my first fresh fig this summer in Bosnia. Azra had green figs, and Melissa and I were weary of them at first because you could pretty much just grab one and eat everything but the tiny stem at the top. Inside, the pink fruit was unique and like nothing I had ever seen before. There, I learned to love figs. They are sweet, not to juicy, and easy to eat. I definitely ate my fill while I was gone, in everything from sandwiches to gelato!
I thought my fig season was over when I returned, since they are usually quite expensive in the States when you can find them, not to mention that I had never even seen them at my grocery store. Costco, however, was selling figs when my mom went shopping for Amanda’s rehearsal dinner. Remembering how much I loved them, she bought a case of them and split them between us. Now my fridge is was filled with figs! I ate probably about half of them plain, but had fun finding other flavor combinations. Some good breakfasts:
Question: Have you tried fresh figs before? What is your favorite way to eat them?
Fig, Goat Cheese, Cucumber and Hazelnut Salad with Balsamic Viniagrette
for 2 lunch salads
small head of lettuce
2 oz goat cheese
4 figs, quartered
2 pickling cucumbers, sliced and quartered
2 tbsp hazelnuts, toasted and slightly chopped
4 tbsp balsamic viniagrette
Toast the hazelnuts in a toaster oven for 5-7 minutes until warm. Rip lettuce into bite sized pieces. Top each bowl with half the cucumbers, goat cheese, figs and hazelnuts.Drizzle each salad with 2 tbsp balsamic viniagrette, or simply dress with oil and vinegar.