I'm not cynical enough to believe that people don't keep their New Years resolutions. I admit to giving an eye roll with the regulars in my pilates class. It's true. It will be crowded for the next two months and then go back to normal, but setting goals is never a bad thing. It's motivating to make a promise to yourself and follow it through with your best intentions. To believe you are capable... which is sometimes the toughest part. This year, Hugh and I continued a tradition we started a few years back. We bundle up and head to the top of the highest hill in town that looks out at the Pacific coastline. It's our spot. It is the place we got engaged and also the home of our new-year-goal-sharing-session. I will chalk it up to the most vulnerable conversation we have all year. Sharing your hopes and dreams, maybe dissapointments from the year past, with the person who matters most to you, can be a heavy moment. Heavy in a way that fills your soul.
Earlier in the day, I sectioned my lined paper into six categories and tried to use my best hand writing to make note of the big things I hope for 2013. And I don't use the term big lightly. My list didn't have things like learning to salsa dance or loose five pounds (not that those aren't respectable goals), it was composed of huge markers like buying a house, going on a big trip to Europe in the spring, starting another book and other such things. It almost felt like a fake list when I looked at it. It scares me just as much as it motivates me. This year we will strive to check the items off both of our lists. Maybe none of them. Maybe all of them if I can push the fear out of my head. Either way, while life continues to build on itself, it feels good to start fresh with an entire sparkly new year ahead.
On the subject of lots of people at pilates, I believe it is the season for light salads. The one here is creamy from the tahini dressing and naturally sweet with the beets and carrots. If you're keeping away from dairy, tahini is the answer to a craving for creamy dressing. It's the perfect kind of thing to make a little extra of so you can pack it for lunch the next day.
I intended to write a whole foods focused detox plan for the site, but I waited too long. January is on its way and Hugh dug up my whipped cream maker and while we're finding reason to top anything slightly appropriate with the stuff, writing a detox plan just didn't feel right at the moment. I contributed to the Action Plan that comes out in Whole Living this month, and I am completely behind how they design their detox plan, so pick up the January/February issue and take a peek at that if you are looking for ideas.
Dream big. Eat lettuce. I'm coming for you, 2013.
GLAZED BEET + CARROT SALAD // Serves 4
I changed the original recipe around because I had already roasted a bushel of beets (both red and yellow, hence the bleeding coloration of the beets in the photo). My recipe below reflects using beets that are already roasted, but you can click back to the original if you want to start with raw, baby beets. I also used full sized carrots and cut them down to a similar size of a young carrot.
- 1/2 Tbsp. butter
- 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 2 large yellow beets, roasted and peeled, cut into 1/2'' wedges
- 3 carrots, halved, large halves quartered if needed
- sea salt + pepper
- 2 tsp. honey
- 3 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp. tahini
- 1 Tbsp. orange or lemon juice
- 1/4 cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley, divided
- 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
- 12 cups mixed baby lettuces
- 1/3 cup cooked garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
- 2 Tbsp. toasted sesame seeds, white or black or mixed
In a skillet over medium heat, melt the butter in the olive oil. Add the carrots and beets and season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook over moderate heat, stirring once or twice, until the carrots are crisp-tender, about 5-6 minutes. Add the honey and 2 tablespoons of the vinegar and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until tender and lightly glazed, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer the vegetables to a large bowl to cool.
Whisk the remaining tablespoon of vinegar, tahini and citrus into the skillet along with the cumin and a generous pinch of the chopped parsley.
Toss the baby lettuces, remaining parsley and garbanzos with a light coating of the tahini dressing. Plate the greens and top with the carrots, beets and sprinkle the sesame seeds. Serve immediately.
* You can prepare the salad a day in advance by making the carrots and beets as directed, and keeping them covered in the fridge overnight. The dressing can also be kept covered in the fridge for up to a week. Toss everything and assemble just before serving.