Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mixed Greens Salad with Blackberries, Candied Walnuts, Blue Cheese, and Honey Lime Vinaigrette

There's a buzz in the air lately - the buzz of summer, can you hear it?  A few posts ago I wrote about my need for change, and what I was doing to guide it consciously.  It must be working because this season will definitely usher in some needed change for me and my family.  It will be a summer of endings and beginnings  - for starters, my mom has finally retired from almost 40 years of teaching, a much deserved ending for her.  She's headed to warmer climes when the snow starts piling up this winter.  I'm beyond excited for her.

While she has closed the chapter on her work, I will open another.  Next week I start a new job.  This past year has been quite an adventure - a stressful, unfulfilling struggle to be honest.  I came to a crossroads earlier this year, and decided to do something about it, despite only being in my previous position just shy of a year.  I'm not one to just quit when I don't like something or someone - that will be anywhere you go.  But when it starts to affect my personal and mental well being, that's when I have an issue.  So, I made the decision to move on, for a better life, for a better experience.  I was a pretty crappy wife, daughter, and friend the past year - and I can NEVER get that back.  I cannot have regrets, just learn from it and move on, and hope I never have to be in that situation again in the workplace.  Needless to say, I'm over the moon with excitement to start at this new company.  I'm energized and ready to go!

Before I start this new gig, my husband and I are headed to Seattle for a weekend of relaxation, good food and wine.  Any recommendations on fabulous places to eat and things to see?  I'd love to hear them.

On the food front, this summer buzz has me craving all things salad......they're easy, fresh, and full of flavor this time of year.  I still had some limes leftover after making that cheesecake last week so thought I'd make a vinaigrette with them.  The organic blackberries were calling my name as soon as I stepped foot in the store this week so I added a huge handful along with some crumbled blue cheese and candied walnuts to the greens.  Mmm, mmm, mmm.  It hit the spot!  I will definitely be making this one again.

Happy Summer!

Mixed Greens with Blackberries, Candied Walnuts, Blue Cheese, and Honey Lime Vinaigrette
Recipe by A Toast to Taste
Photos by A Toast to Taste

For the Dressing
2 Tbsp honey
Juice from 1 lime
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

For the Salad
4 handfuls mixed greens
1 cup organic blackberries
1/2 cup candied walnuts {heat 1.5 Tbsp brown sugar in skillet over medium heat, add walnuts just as it starts to melt and stir together to make sure all are coated.  Remove from heat, sprinkle with cinnamon if desired, let cool.}
1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese

Whisk together all ingredients for dressing, except oil.  Continue to whisk while slowly adding the oil in a steady stream.  Whisk until well combined.

To a large bowl add greens, blackberries, candied walnuts, and blue cheese.  Pour over dressing, toss everything together.  Serve and enjoy!


  1. This looks delicious. I'm going to bring this recipe up to the cabin 4th of July weekend. I'm going to check your archive for other recipes too :)

  2. Best wishes as you begin this new adventure! The salad looks delicious, I love you combination of flavors!


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