Hey, hey Summer Abundance Salad. It is official, I am declaring this summer, the summer of salads!
Oddly, I am really loving it, but I think that’s only because I make my salads BIG, full, and only filled with things I love…plus a heck of a lot of cheese. I mean, obviously.
Soo you know that feeling when your fridge is basically bursting with fresh produce? You’re overwhelmed because, one, you don’t know what fruit or veggie to start with first, and two, you just do not know how you will eat it all before it goes bad? Tell me you know what I am talking about? No? Is that just me? I admit, I can get way too excited when I see the foods I love in the store and then I buy them all…it’s kind of an issue, but it’s the reason this yummy Summer Abundance Salad was born, so whatever.
Also, I have yet to throw anything out, so hey, maybe it’s not that much of an issue. I dunno, either way, I’m loving the big salads. Especially this one because it’s grain based and SUPER fruity.
You know what is so weird though? I am currently talking about all things summer, but during the day I’m working on all things autumn and holiday. I know I mentioned this a bit yesterday, but it’s so weird to be working on holiday things in July. I don’t NOT like it…in fact, I love it…but it is weird. One minute I’m thinking about Christmas cookies, and the next I’m talking about stone fruit and berries.
My mind is a little all over the place. Plus, Asher has me in planning mode for our trip to Disney in August. Which by the way, thank you guys all so much for your awesome input on which park to go to. I think that Orlando is winning, as it sounds like all in all, it just has more to offer. Asher pretty much has her mind set that we should head to Orlando, and since it’s her birthday trip, whatever she says goes. Yes, I can already tell I am going to be spending a lot of money on that little girl. Say hello to wands, wizard hats and all the butterbeer we can get our hands on! 🙂
Okok, but salad talk!
This salad is so incredible, it’s light, but filling…and you guys…it actually gets better the longer it sits, YES! Got to love a salad that can be made in advance and genuinely tastes better the next day. Perfect for easy lunches, summer picnics or dinner parties!
Plus, it’s pretty dang healthy too. Whole grains, protein, fruits, veggies… it’s even almost vegan. Almost being the key word there. I mean, if you leave off the feta this salad is vegan, but then you know I could never do that. ?
And like most salads I’ve been making these days, this beauty is topped with toasted nuts and seeds. They’re sort of my go-to salad topping these days. They just add a really nice crunch!
OH, and if you wanted to make this a little heartier, you could definitely add a fried or poached egg, that would be delish. This salad would also be great served up as a side dish for grilled meats and seafood. Personally, I just like to go to town on this with some homemade, super salty tortilla chips or naan.
Summer Abundance Salad.
- 1 ounce can chickpeas drained + rinsed, 15
- 2 tablespoons basil pesto
- 2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa wild rice and or black rice
- 1 cup pitted fresh cherries halved
- 1 cup fresh blueberries or blackberries
- 1 nectarine thinly sliced
- 2 ears grilled corn kernels removed from the cob
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
- 6-9 ounces feta cheese crumbled
- 1 avocado sliced
- large handful of microgreens and or arugula
- 1/2 cup mixed toasted nuts + seeds (sunflower pumpkin, cashews, almonds, etc)
In a medium bowl, stir together the chickpeas and pesto. Let sit at least 15 minutes minutes to marinate.
Prepare your grains as directed on the package.
In a large salad bowl, toss together the quinoa, cherries, berries, nectarine, corn, tomatoes and feta. Stir in the pesto marinated chickpeas and toss the salad with about half the vinaigrette (see below).
To serve, top the salad with sliced avocado, toasted nuts + seeds and fresh greens. Serve with the remaining vinaigrette and chips or bread for scooping!
Spicy Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette
Combine all ingredients in a glass jar or bowl and whisk until smooth. Taste and adjust salt + pepper to your liking
Too flipping good.