Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Summer Strawberry Spinach Salad

Summer Strawberry Spinach Salad

If you're like me, you're always looking for some ways to make a healthy, but not boring meal.  With good intentions, I always buy basic salad ingredients like romaine, spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers, etc, but I have a hard time making it exciting enough to actually want to eat it all as a meal.  This week, I bought a bunch of strawberries and some baby spinach at Trader Joe's , not necessarily planning to combine them... Until now!  Don't we all want to at least start out the week eating well?  With my husband, Jay, coming home from work for lunch today, I decided to throw this sweet salad together.

Approximately 4 cups of baby spinach and chopped romaine
8 sliced strawberries
1 small green apple, cored and cut into thin slices
About 1/4 cup sliced cinnamon and spice almonds (see below)

I layered the lettuce, spinach,  fruit, and almonds in a bowl and waited to add dressing or other toppings   until we had it on our separate plates (I wanted to add vinaigrette and bleu cheese to mine--Jay gags at the thought of those).

 Cinnamon and Spice Almonds:
Pre-heat the oven (I used my toaster oven) to 300 degrees
Spread out approximately 1/4 - 1/2 cup sliced almonds on a baking sheet
Sprinkle with a mixture of cinnamon and sugar (I used a grinder mixture I got at Trader Joe's)
Add a sprinkle of cayenne pepper, to taste.
Spray with a light coat of cooking spray (optional)
Bake for about 10 minutes until the almonds start to brown just a bit
Toss a few on your salad, and ENJOY!!

As you can see, I added some bleu cheese crumbles, a drizzle of low-fat balsamic dressing, and a few blackberries to my salad.  It was delicious!!  I can't wait to make this again!  It would make a great dinner salad with grilled salmon or chicken...yum.   Let me know what you think!!!

--Meghan :)

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Cinco de Mayo

Happy Cinco de Mayo!
In honor of the holiday (which I googled and found out it is much more celebrated here in the US than it is in Mexico, go figure),  I thought it would only be appropriate to share a festive drink with you.  This isn't my creation, in fact, I first had it yesterday at a new Mexican restaurant downtown, called Gringo's.  (yummmm!!) They call it a "Loaded Corona."  I call it pure brilliance.  These days I am all about tasty drinks without the fuss.  Don't get me wrong, I love mixing martinis and blending margaritas, but the prep and clean-up are a pain in my hiney! Anyhoo, this drink is fabulously simple.  You don't even need a glass.
Loaded Corona-
Step 1: open your Corona (or Corona Light)
Step 2: take a nice swig of cold Mexican beer goodness
Step 3: pour in about an ounce (or more, or less, depending on your preference) of citrus flavored vodka (we used Svedka)
Step 4: add a lime wedge
Step 5: drink (responsibly!)


Friday, May 3, 2013

first things first...

Hello! Welcome to "Kind of a Big Diehl."  I'm Meghan and this is my first time ever posting a blog, so please bear with me as I figure this out.
Let me tell you a little about myself... I'm 29, married to my high school sweetheart, Jay, and together we have two crazy boys, Michael and Liam. We have a big, dumb, yellow lab named Rutherford.  He is 10, a grumpasaurus, and my best good friend.  We also have a cat named Wilson.  I tolerate him, at best.
I'm a Jersey girl, born and raised at the Jersey Shore.  I recently moved with my family to the gorgeous town of Greenville, SC, and we are settling into Southern life quite nicely so far.
Interior design has always been my passion.  I studied that and hospitality in college, so be prepared for some creative goodness.  I am always re-imagining all the rooms in my house, and pretty much every place I visit for that matter! I also love making food and festive drinks and can't wait to share my ideas!
I decided to start blogging to chronicle my day to day life.  Mostly as a diary for my family and myself, but also as a way to connect with old and new friends on different subjects.  I am looking forward to feedback, so please, share, and be nice, but don't be shy!
And to quote my favorite Adam Sandler movie, Billy Madison, "Alright, here goes nothin!"