Tuesday, June 30, 2009

30 Salads in 30 Days

Today kicks off a new, month-long, BTWG blog series, "30 Salads in 30 Days". Before I get to #1, today's salad, a little background and explanation.

As those in the Project know, I am a huge fan of salads; fresh, raw fruits and veggies mixed with fresh raw fruit and I'm in heaven. Let me assure you, it wasn't always this way for me. Growing up in rural Southern Indiana, I was 100% corn-fed and always loved the down home cooking; still do. My personal favorites are still my Mother's fried chicken dinners and my Dad's hamburgers. Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, overly cooked vegetables with loads of butter, salt, and pepper is another "death row meal" for me (an Anthony Bourdain reference). Oh, and don't forget the homemade pies and other sweet treats! But today... not so much.

While I still have a fondness for these foods, I rarely eat them. These day's I am 80%-90%+ on the Project diet, with a slight modification to get more protein (another story for another time). Over the past 18 months, I can count on both hands the number of days I have NOT eaten a fresh salad at least once in the day! Plus, there have been countless days where I have eaten salad at two meals during a day. During this time, I have yet to get burned out or bored with eating a big, healthful, fresh salad. That's right, I'm a total freak for salads and raw fruit and veggies. I'm a convert from eating cooked-to-death-veggies drowning in butter and salt to, now, truly preferring them in their natural state.

Over the next month, I am going to post the salad that I eat each day. Some days may be the exact same salad, and that might happen for several days. Who knows? The point isn't to give you 30 new salad ideas, you can use my ideas or use your own. So why am I doing this? I get tired of people in the Project telling me they are tired of salads and that they get bored! I want to show that with some variety, creativity, and an open mind, you can consume one of the most healthful meals every day (if you want) and not get bored. A salad, done right, can deliver a high quality meal with loads of vitamins, nutrients, fiber and vitality, and it can be very tasty and enjoyable.

I hope you enjoy the "30 Salads in 30 Days" feature! Oh, and feel free to share your salad suggestions and I'll give them a try.

Up for a challenge? Join me in eating 30 salads in 30 days and keep me posted on your experience.

One bit of "warning" - you are responsible for your own nutritional choices, these are just suggestions that you can explore. Also, I am not providing the caloric content, specific amounts/volumes and all that. All the things you want in the amounts you need. I am not responsible for your choices, you are. So, don't do anything stupid, like eat only salads in order to try and lose weight. Got it?

Okay, here we go. Today was a bit "unusual" as I often eat a salad at lunch and at dinner. Yet, in order to fit in my training/workout, I had something else at lunch, so it was just one at dinner. It was one of my personal favorites -
Buffalo Chicken Salad
  • Mixed greens, romaine, etc. - couple of big handfuls
  • Grilled chicken breast
  • After grilling, I sliced the chicken into small strips and coated it lightly with some "buffalo wing" sauce
  • Slivered almonds
  • Sliced carrots
  • Small amount of ranch dressing (just enough to taste)
  • Couple of fresh strawberries
  • Normally I add a little hard boiled egg white and some avocado (heart healthy fat), but didn't have any on hand : (

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