Red Leaf, White Cheddar and Cranberry Salad

Friday, October 2, 2015

Sometimes I come across a space on the internet that feels restful and safe.  One of my good friends has a blog that I used to read when I was in college (she was Janssen's friend first).  It was one of the first blogs I ever read, and it was lovely.  She left blogging for other pursuits, but I ran across it again today, and was immediately filled with a lovely peace.  Her blog is everything wonderful, sweet, and good, just like she is. Reading it felt like a warm, friendly hug from an old friend.  A place to be renewed, inspired, and safe.

This experience made me think about the space I create here.  I want it to be authentic.  A place where perfection is a goal, but not required to succeed.  I want you to leave feeling excited to experiment and create new things that you have never made before, and not feeling afraid to fail, because trust me, it will happen.  I want you to feel inspired to cook healthy and beautiful food to fill and nourish you and your family.  I want you to feel renewed and excited to cook.

I want to let you look through the lens into my kitchen.  See the laughter at our dinner table.  The passion for good food.  Our home is a place that we constantly fill with dynamic and delicious food that brings us closer together, and I want to help you and your family to feel the same way.  I don't know if I convey that through my recipes and words yet, but I hope I do.  I want to.  I am trying to.  Here's to attempted authenticity and delicious, beautiful food.

After all that, here is a cozy salad for a crisp fall day.  I don't know if salad can be called cozy, but if there ever was one, this is it.  A nice soft lettuce, a subtle cheese, sweet dried cranberries, and crunchy pepitas.

Red Leaf, White Cheddar and Cranberry Salad
Serves 2

Salad:
4 cups of red leaf lettuce
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup diced white cheddar cheese
1/8 cup roasted and salted pepitas (green pumpkin seeds)
1/4 cup sweet yogurt poppyseed dressing (recipe below)

Combine all ingredients, except the dressing, in a large bowl and toss. Pour dressing over the top.   Serve immediately.

Sweet Yogurt Poppyseed Dressing:
1/4 tsp ground mustard
1/4 tsp poppy seeds
1 Tbs granulated sugar
1/4 cup plain full-fat yogurt
2 Tbs milk
1 Tbs white vinegar

Combine all ingredients in a jar and shake until combined.  Pour evenly over salad.



11 comments

  1. Fwiw, I can't eat many of the recipes you post here (dairy intolerance) but I love seeing what you come up with. That, and new pictures of Fox, because holy cow, that child is adorable. So I think you're doing pretty well on the authenticity front.

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    1. Saskia,

      Thanks so much for being will to stop by, even though you can't eat a lot of my recipes (Dairy intolerance sounds hard! I had to cut out milk for the first 8 months of Fox's life, and it was tough!)! I will try to include more recipes without dairy! It will make me stretch and grow ;) More pictures of Fox coming! I think he is an adorable child, too! Thanks for your kind works! - Landen

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  2. All I want in life is for Ralphie to bring her blog back.

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  3. Could you substitute honey or maple syrup for the sugar?

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    1. Sure! I would probably do honey, because I think the flavor would be better with this particular recipe, but maple syrup would definitely work, too. I actually ran out of honey last week, which is why I used sugar. Typically I use honey as a sweetener when I can. I am glad you asked!

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    2. Awesome! Thanks for your response!

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  4. I really love your blog, and you've definitely inspired my family to take a deeper look into the food we eat, see where we can swap things out for more natural, or organic options, and try more meatless dinners... mainly because meat is so expensive! I also really love your posts that you've done about minimalist living because we're in the middle of reading The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and we're pretty much going through this process of purging our entire house and living with less. It's always nice to get great ideas from other people trying to live the same lifestyle! Anyways, I love your blog and think you're doing great!

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    1. Paige, you are so nice! Thank you for always leaving such nice comments! Thank you for helping me feel like what I post is making a difference somewhere! The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up was SO inspirational! I haven't followed her steps for making changes, but it has definitely spurred me on to making changes. I think going to France made the biggest difference. Living in a tiny space (like 200 sq. ft), made me realize I just don't need that much and should just be happy where I am. Thanks for your support!

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  5. I think that you do a great job at making your blog and recipes authentic. Every single recipe that I have tried off of here has been delicious. And while the recipes are more interesting than "meat and potato" traditional type dishes, they really do feel like they belong at a cozy family dinner table.

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    1. Shelly, this is fabulous feedback! I am SO glad you have liked all the recipes you have tried! I try hard to post tasty and beautiful things. I am not a super traditional cook, but I think lots of dishes can be cozy and I am really glad you think so, too! Thanks for taking a minute to let me know. I really appreciate it.

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  6. I tried this one last night -- a yummy fall/winter salad (or any time of the year!)

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