Making the shift to change the way I ate wasn’t fast, easy, or always delicious. There were many days where I resisted eating greens – simply because I steamed the heck out of everything (which my taste buds interpreted as bland and boring). Investing in higher quality meat took time too. Spending double or triple on chicken breast or even bacon seemed totally unreasonable to me. However, the more I learned about how factory-farmed animals were treated, the more I started to pay attention to what was going into my body. And boy…is it making a difference.
In the next coming months, I’ll take some time to write more about the importance of quality foods, making “the shift,” and breaking the myths that healthy eating is crazy expensive. For now, let me share an inspirational recipe and story…that you can enjoy with your family or friends.
This week, I had the pleasure of bunking with my long-time boyfriend’s family as his dad was recently diagnosed with cancer. Oddly enough, this horrible news has brought us closer together – sharing many laughs, tears, and late-night meals. A common topic around the dinner table has been about greens. Enthusiastic to fight “the beast,” Graham, Dana (his sister and mighty healthy eater), Mrs. Jeong (his loving mom), and I, have been teaching Mr. Jeong the importance of healthy food and getting out of bed to keep his spirits high. Let’s just say there’s been a lot of emphasis around greens and coconut water to keep him hydrated and full of vitamins.
Yesterday I swung by a local grocery store to pick up some greens for lunch! Knowing his family loves bacon, I threw together a simple and delicious, warm spinach salad – adding seasonal finds like figs and nopal cactus.
The point of this post, is to show you that my journey to eat healthy has evolved over the years. It’s been a steady mission – and 100% inclusive of the loved ones around me. As you continue on your path to EAT LIFE WHOLE, stick with your goals to live a long, healthy life, and you will find inspiration to keep moving forward.
2 large bunches of spinach (baby spinach works too), thoroughly washed
4 thick slices of bacon
8 figs, cut into quarters
1 small nopal cactus leaf (optional), cut into 2 inch slices
4 soft-poached eggs (optional)
Salt & pepper to taste
NOTE: The cactus was a local, seasonal find – added for crunch and variation. You can easily swap it with thinly sliced cucumber.
Juice from 1 lemon
Zest from ½ of a lemon
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil or macadamia nut oil
1 teaspoon honey
Salt & pepper to taste
Preparing the Dressing:
- Add lemon juice, zest, honey, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.
- Whisk together and slowly pour-in the oil.
- Stir until all of the ingredients are combined and set aside.
Preparing the Salad:
- In a large skillet, cook the bacon until crispy. Set aside on a paper towel.
- Carefully dump the remaining grease in a can, but don’t wash the skillet.
- Poach 4 eggs and set aside. See below for more instruction on how to poach an egg.
- Add the pre-washed and dried spinach in the warm skillet. Toss gently and place into a large mixing bowl.
- Add sliced nopal cactus (or cucumber) and figs.
- Add the bacon by roughly ripping it into pieces.
- Toss with dressing and plate.
- Serve with a poached egg and a few sprinkles of salt & pepper.
Preparing the Eggs:
- In a small pot or sauce pan, bring water to a slow simmer (just before a boil).
- Add 1 capful of vinegar per egg. (I used apple cider vinegar because that’s what I have in the house).
- Crack 1 egg and slowly drop it into the water. The egg will come together.
- Cook for about 3-4 minutes and remove from the water with a large spoon. Set aside.
NOTE: If poaching is too intimidating, do a soft-boiled egg instead.