Strawberry, Avocado + Arugula Salad w/ a Simple Honey Mustard Vinaigrette and Having Grace With Yourself When Feeling Distracted

We are in the midst of our first heat wave here, which leaves me wanting to go no where near the oven. I’m also in the midst of an unfortunate recipe and writers’ block spell. Thankfully, I picked up a few perfect salad ingredients from the farmers’ market this morning and aside from my overall lack of creativity in the kitchen lately, I never feel challenged to come up with a new favorite salad combination.

But before we get to the recipe, lets have a quick chat about feeling distracted and writers’ block. So if you’re just here for the salad, keep on scrolling through the next 3 paragraphs!

Plain and simple: I’ve been feeling pretty distracted lately. Maybe it’s end of the school year restlessness at work? Or it might be because we are heading into the home stretch to our wedding. So despite a glaring to-do list, it can be really difficult to resist the urge to scan Pinterest, check things off the planning list, or to head down a rabbit hole of Brides magazine articles. Or, just maybe, its because some days I get overwhelmed by the fact that I am in what is a seemingly major transitional period of life where I’m trying to accumulate the puzzle pieces to the future. — But then again, isn’t all of a life a transitional period? If we aren’t in the process of one thing, aren’t we in the process of another?

What I’m realizing, however, is that in certain areas of life, its not necessarily a bad thing to feel or be distracted. Obviously, distractions can make our real world commitments and responsibilities challenging (hello work and school), but can distractions in our personal lives actually be a good thing? I think so. You see, when I’m feeling distracted, its often because I’ve been putting an unbalanced amount of effort or time into something and my brain craves a different type of stimulation. If I’ve been spending too much time cooking or baking, I suddenly want to avoid the kitchen and play more guitar. If I’ve spent too much time creating content on the computer, I want nothing more than to be outside for as long as possible. So my feelings of distraction are usually less of a problem, but more of my intuition telling me to spend time and energy on something else that fills my heart.

So lately, rather than fighting the distractions, I’ve been riding with them. I’ve been putting less pressure on myself to blog when it doesn’t feel natural and have been following my intuitions desire to do a pretty random assortment of activities. Oddly enough, these distracted phases are becoming the time when I can find a lot of mental clarity because I’m just listening to what my heart wants/needs. Unfortunately, this can come at the expense of a continual flow of content here, but thankfully, I’m still mostly just a hobbyist blogger, so going through a phase of limited creativity and “not feeling it” with writing has little repercussion.

But a quick takeaway: have grace with yourself if your feeling distracted. Maybe your intuition is telling you that another aspect of your life needs a bit more TLC. Sometimes taking a small and abbreviated step away from something can be better than forcing yourself through it and thus lessening the quality of the effort and energy it requires. Just as it’s important to “listen to your body” in regards to food and movement, it’s also important to “listen to your mind/soul” when it comes to your work, personal life and choice activities. So show your soul some compassion and know that, like all things in the world, your productivity and creativity will ebb and flow.

A N Y W A Y, lets get on with the goods, shall we?

All the ingredients in this salad could go categorized somewhere in the list of my top favorite foods: strawberry, avocado, arugula, micro greens and almonds. I used arugula as the base green for this salad because I love its natural peppery flavor and find that it pairs very perfectly with strawberries. Its also my go-to green in the weeks where I’m not really digging kale or spinach.

Fun fact: botanically speaking, did you know that a strawberry isn’t actually a technical berry? Who knew? Regardless, it’s still a fabulous and nutrient dense fruit with a high concentration of Vitamin C, lots of fiber, antioxidants, manganese, folate and potassium. Strawberries are also lower in natural sugars.

Another key ingredient is the micro greens: the pretty, younger and peppier version of fully matured greens. No fuss preparation and delightful to look at, some studies have observed micro greens to have more than 4 times the concentration of nutrients than regular greens. They are loaded with phytonutrients such as ascorbic acid, carotenoids and phylloquinone which means they are working hard to fight oxidation in the body. I used daikon radish green in this recipe, but any micro green would fit the bill!

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On of the best parts of this recipe, however, is the simple honey mustard vinaigrette. The dressing was thrown together in 3 minutes and made of fridge/pantry staples. When I make homemade dressings, I like to add the ingredients to a small mason jar and shake them up for a minute or two to really incorporate them thoroughly. The mason jar makes for easy storage of the leftovers, because its pretty difficult to mix a single serving of dressing (everything just sticks to the sides). That being said, the measurements below for the dressing ingredients makes 2-3 servings.

This equal parts sweet, savory, tart, and crunchy salad can be crafted and consumed as or a part of a simple home meal or can be made ahead of time to tote along on the go. Regardless, it’s delicious and satisfying! Keep on scrolling for the dEATS!

SAA

Ingredients:

  • 4 strawberries, sliced
  • 1 cup (giant handful) arugula
  • handful of micro greens, any variety. I used daikon radish greens.
  • 1/2 avocado. sliced
  • 1/4 cup almonds, sliced or slivered
  • 1+ tbsp hempseed
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp raw, unfiltered honey
  • 2 tbsp spicy brown mustard (I used Sir Kensington’s)
  • 1+ tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp filtered water
  • sea salt
  • black pepper

Directions

  1. Wash the greens and strawberries.
  2. In a mason jar, combine mustard, honey, olive oil, water, and apple cider vinegar.
  3. Shake contents of jar well, opening and stirring if necessary. (I had to stir once to remove honey from sides of jar)
  4. Arrange arugula onto a plate and drizzle a few spoonfuls of dressing onto the greens.
  5. Add micro greens, strawberries, avocado and almonds and drizzle with as much dressing as desired.
  6. Finish by sprinkling with hemp seeds and adding a few dashes of sea salt and black pepper.
  7. Serve immediately.

For take along option: mix salad ingredients and keep dressing in separate container until ready to eat.

I hope you love this salad as much as I did! I get sooo excited when I get to see your recreations of my recipes! If you make this beauty and post on instagram, be sure to tag @mindingmysoul or #mindingmysouleats so I can show the love! As always, thank you so much for taking the time to read! I really can’t express how thankful I am. Bye for now!

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