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Saturday, October 5, 2013

Pizza Salad with Paleo Pesto Dressing

I've made it to October 5th.  Woo, one-sixth of the way through the Whole 30.  So far, Monday was the hardest day--the initial shock my body experienced not having grain or dairy.  When I did my 10 mile run on Monday, all I could think about (besides how tired I was) was cheese and bread...which eventually led to me craving pizza.  One day later, I was still craving pizza.  I'll be honest, I don't love pizza just because the zesty tomato sauce and melty mozzarella...I also love how you can pile on all the veggies you want.  That must have been why California schools used to consider pizza as a member of the Vegetable group on the food pyramid.  (Oh California, how I miss you...)  Anyways, to curb the pizza craving, I made what I'm calling Pizza Salad.  The recipe, including the pesto dressing, is totally Paleo, and ended up being amazingly delicious, even without any grain (croutons) or dairy (blue cheese).  I got lots of "Mmms" and "Yums" from the hunnie too.  I think I'll keep the pesto dressing up my sleeve for even after the Whole 30 ends.

Paleo Pesto Dressing
1 cup basil leaves
2 cloves garlic
Slivered almonds, handful (not heeping)
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3-4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Salt, dash
Crushed red pepper flakes, dash
Blend basil, garlic, almonds and oil in blender or food processor until smooth.  Add balsamic vinegar and spices and pulse.  If dressing is too thick add a tablespoon or two of water to the blender, and blend until desired consistency.  Makes ~4oz.

Pizza Salad
Toss together your favorite veggies, either salad veggies or pizza veggies, and drizzle the Paleo Pesto dressing over top.  Here is what our salad was made up of:  baby spinach, sliced mushrooms, vine ripe cherry tomatoes, sliced green bell pepper, sliced cucumber, kalamata olives, pepperoncinis, and sliced pepperoni.
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