I am just going to Shake, Shake, I Shake It…

IMG_3925Shake it up that is.  I so wanted to name this salad Shake it Off Kale Salad, but really it just did not seem to make sense.  However since Little Miss Mixture is a Taylor Swift fan, I have heard this song almost as much as Let it Go recently and I cannot seem to get it out of my head.  So as I was standing in the kitchen shaking my salad this is exactly the beat the salad was created to.

I have posted a couple of kale salads now and each one is different.  That is what is so great about kale and some of the other greens. They have versatility.  I have been a fan of spinach for this reason  for a decade or so, but when we began eating kale a couple of years ago I was skeptical.  It took being a member of a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) group where week after week I got bunches of greens for me to get comfortable with them and really start to enjoy eating them and cooking with them.  The thing I love most about kale is how it stands up to dressings and marinades.  I find the longer it marinates the better it taste.  Do you know what that allows you to do?  You can literally prepare a kale salad one day and enjoy it off and on throughout the next 3-4 days.

That is exactly what I do with a couple of kale salads that we enjoy.  Here is one that I put together the other day.


Shaken Kale Salad

1 Bunch of Kale

1 Apple, cut into chunks

1/4 cup Dried Cranberries

4 Tbsp. Olive Oil

1 Tbsp Honey

3 Tbsp Lemon Juice

1/4 tsp. Ground Black Pepper

Place all ingredients in a glass bowl with a tight fitting lid.  Shake well.  Place in refrigerator to marinate for at least 4 hours.  Remove from refrigerator and shake a few times.  Enjoy.

* Since the dressing includes lemon juice the apples hold up well.  Though I do like to add some for extra crunch by the third day.IMG_3924


Similar related salads


Spinach, Apple, Mushroom Salad

Kale Salad with Walnuts

Kale Salad with Walnuts

Simple Kale Salad


Monday Mixture – Meatless Monday


Cinco De Mayo Smoothie

Have you noticed this holiday has increased in popularity?   In recent years you hear about it more and it is seems to be celebrated more.  I thought it was just the world I lived in as I had grown up and it was a holiday adults enjoyed, but in doing some research about Cinco de Mayo for Little Miss Mixture I found that it was declared a holiday the United Staes would celebrate in 2005.  So in fact it may not be the world I live in, but it seems everyone is abiding by the concurrent resolution that was signed June 7, 2005.  Regardless of if it is my world or everyone, I am going to jump on the bandwagon as there is something about a Mexican cocktail and some chips and salsa that just makes the day.

How are you celebrating?  If you are at all interested in celebrating at home the food blogs have been inundated with recipes over the past week.  I realized as I was writing my Taco post clearly my idea to be ahead of the holiday was not an original.  That is okay because I have been pinning away this week.  Mexican is generally in our weekly rotation and not just in honor of the 5th of May, so now my list of “to try” has doubled.

1. Cinco De Mayo Smoothie

I tried to be creative and fun this morning.  Of course it was one of those days where everyone else in the house seemed to be moving slow so my cuteness was lost in the rush to get out of the house, but the taste was not.

Cinco De Mayo Smoothie (reversed)

Red Layer 

1/2 Cup Milk

1/2 Cup Frozen raspberries

Blend together and pour into glass

White Layer 

1 Banana

1/2 cup Almond Milk

1 Tbsp Coconut

Blend together and pour into glass. This layer was slightly thinner which made it hard to layer, so the addition of a frozen banana might have worked better.

Green Layer (variation of one of our favorite green smoothies Tinker bell Smoothie)

1/2 cup Almond Milk

1 cup Mango

1 cup Baby Spinach

1 cup Frozen Pineapple

Blend together and enjoy.


2. Meatless Monday – There is a movement to increase people to eat less meat by going meatless on Monday. Our family has increased our vegetarian meals over the years and while I am not an official Meatless Monday blogger, or at least not yet Let’s Have Mixture will include meatless meals that we find satisfying. If you do not think you can go meatless consider decreasing the portion of meat at your meals. This is beneficial in helping increase your intake of vegetables and healthy grains. Going meatless also has positive impacts on overal risk of chronic disease as well as global benefits to our planet.


3. Our week in Food – May is busy with a lot of evening activities wrapping up and meetings at school and what not so this past week’s meals would probably be considered one of my lazier weeks.  Just a glimpse ahead at the coming week will be the same because someone or all of us are busy 3 of the 5 school nights.  We all have these weeks and my goal is to help you determine how to keep feeding your family balanced meals rather than hitting up the drive thru.

Monday – Taco Redo – Mr. Mixture had an evening function so Little Miss Mixture had Taco Night and I had a Taco salad.

Tuesday – Leftovers  – It may not be pretty but most recipes make more than 2 1/ 2 can eat.  On the bright side it allows choices having family members pick what they want.

WednesdayPork Chops with Honey Pecans, Truffled grits with Mushrooms, and Balsamic Roasted Carrots


Thursday – Grilled Steak for some Grilled Chicken for others, Roasted Beets & Tomato Mozzarella Salad

Friday – Shrimp Pesto Pizza

Saturday – My night off for Ladies night & Daddy Daughter Date Night

Sunday – Chicken Shawarma and Grilled Asparagus

* Be on the lookout for some of our week in Food recipes in future post.



Hope your week is off to a good start!


National Spinach Day


Spinach is typically a staple in our house.

As a kid I remember my parents serving spinach steamed and possibly done in the pressure cooker. Remember I grew up in the South yet there are a number of southern foods that I never tried or was never introduced to until I was an adult. Spinach; however, I had eaten but only on occasion and rarely without chopped onions and vinegar atop.

Sometime in the last 20 years spinach has been revolutionized in my household and my parents. We eat it in, atop, or as the bed in a variety of dishes. I like spinach because it is more versatile than lettuce. If we end up having less salads than I planned that week, we’ll just toss it in a smoothie or sauté it and toss it in pasta, quesadillas, or anything else we may be eating before it wilts in the refrigerator. If I have spinach in the house then I may add a little extra green to just about anything, as it seems to be one of the greens that does not overpower other flavors.

A couple of weeks ago a friend dropped off a bunch of whole wheat lasagna noodles. Oddly enough this is an item that I have found difficulty finding on occasions and had just found it myself, but she was cleaning out gluten from her kitchen and I happily took her trash. So with the chill still in the air, I decided we would have lasagna this week.

My family does not have anyone particular diet/ food pattern that we keep, but luckily Mr. Mixture is agreeable to non meat focused meals. The last batch of lasagna I made was meat based, so in honor of National Spinach Day, I made a spinach based casserole.

I got a little creative and rather than sticking to my planned spinach and mushrooms, I tossed in some carrots and onions as well. I sautéed all the veggies lightly and then layered homemade tomato sauce, whole wheat noodles, my veggie mixture combined with ricotta, and topped with some mozzarella and parmesan cheese.

I will try and combine the different recipes I used and post this National Spinach Day creation.