A few years ago, I decided I’d had enough of negative New Year’s resolutions. Pledges to to lose 5 pounds, give up coffee & fruity candy (what was I thinking?), and relinquish noontime daydreaming made me grumpy and blue, and that’s no way to start the New Year.
So bye-bye self-inflicted, guilt-laden, prickly punishments disguised as self-enlightenment and hello to positive plans of action to get me going on the things I really want to do.
Case in point, my now 3-years-running resolution to eat extra vegetables the month of January.
It’s not that I don’t eat vegetables the rest of the year; I do, with pleasure. But I like upping the ante each January, pushing my vegetables from the side to the center of the plate at lunch and dinner (and occasionally breakfast, too) to balance my bon-bon joyride through December.
My plan of action for said resolution? Goat cheese.
It may sound counterintuitive, but it makes perfect sense in my universe to eat more vegetables by adding a smidge of one of my very favorite ingredients. Goat cheese (IMHO) makes everything better. Everything. Even chocolate. Dare I say more of us would eat heaps more vegetables, with pleasure, if they were freckled with a (reasonable) quantity of crumbled goat cheese? I do.
I encourage you to follow suit in my vegetable quest, dear readers. You may want to start with my millet and carrot salad, which is such a tasty mid-winter alternative to salad greens. It has lots of staying power, too, for powering your new year’s workout resolutions 🙂
1/2 of a small red onion, very thinly sliced, rings separated
1/4 cup raisins
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill or 1 tbsp dried dill
Optional: 1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese (leave out if vegan)
Combine millet, water and salt in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low, cover and simmer until liquid is absorbed and millet is tender, 20 to 25 minutes.
Remove from the heat and place carrots on top of millet. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Transfer millet and carrots to a large bowl, fluff with a fork and set aside to let cool.
In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil, lemon juice and honey; add to millet mixture along with red onion, raisins and dill. Toss to combine, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Just before serving, sprinkle with goat cheese (if using). black-eyed peas, green onions and basil to millet, toss gently and set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, salt and pepper, then pour dressing over millet mixture and toss to coat. Add tomatoes, then spoon salad over lettuce leaves and serve.