"Everything" on a bed of greens

"Everything" - Chicken Breast, New York Steak, Grilled Fish, Flank Steak, Sauteed Pork Chop, Roasted Veggies - you name your protein, and then serve it on a bed of greens! 

Ok, I admit, I just like saying it - "served on a bed of greens" - such a warm, snuggly way of nestling your food on the plate, making for a great presentation and perfectly matched bites.  Remember you are eating with your eyes first!  

One of our local pubs makes the most awesome hamburgers, they are served on a brioche bun with a variety of toppings that are to die for.  Before giving up grains, I could eat the whole hamburger, and actually thought the bun was the best part :-)!  After changing my eating habits, I heard this phrase for the first time at the pub, suggesting to serve the hamburger patty "on a bed of greens".   Maybe I just liked the way it sounded, made me smile, but what a great idea! Their "bed of greens" was a tasty spring type salad mix with a variety of greens, and with the hamburger on top, a few slices of cucumber, tomato, and avocado placed along the side, and it became the most delicious meal.

Before writing this blog, I reviewed the chapter called "The Meal Map" from the book It Starts With Food.  (This book has the perfect outline to get you started on your new healthy eating lifestyle!!I remember being encouraged about all the recipe ideas included in that chapter, and inspiration was needed after reading about the things I was planning to eliminate from my diet! I definitely needed help with meal planning and this chapter gave me a kickstart on the course of cooking differently.  There are so many ideas, but here's the kickstart - pick a protein, then fill your plate with vegetables.  Simple, right?  Now this was different for me, because I thought a balanced meal was a protein, green veggie, starch, and of course nice buttery bread on the side.  But this balancing act is different now - a protein, a "bed of greens", and maybe a sliced tomato and some roasted butternut squash on the side.  It is so good, just a different way of thinking.  

I wish I could just rewrite that whole chapter for you!  But instead, here are some ideas to get you thinking differently, and some pictures to encourage you!  If you keep protein and a variety of veggies on hand, and now add the "bed of greens" to your list of staples to always have in the frig, you have a quick, easy, and impressive meal to make anytime. 


Grill or bake chicken breast. Cut breast in half longwise first and it will cook more evenly, and surprisingly satisfy for just half! This is topped with olive tapenade, served with roasted sweet potatoes and tomato.


Use any ground meat, season with your favorites and embellish your plate! This one has chili powder & cumin, topped with cilantro and salsa, avocado and olives.


And more chicken breast (my favorite), brushed with olive oil, salt and pepper. The sunflower seeds add good crunch to everything!


The classic hamburger, a few crumbles of blue cheese, sweet onion, and roasted sweet potatoes.


Grilled steak, another favorite. When sliced and served on a bed of greens, its easy to make two meals out of one steak!


Grilled Salmon, topped with Chimichurri Sauce. Serve on a bed of greens with arugula.

So now let your imagination go, try different proteins, sample some salad mixes you haven't had before, mix up some olive oil and different types of balsamic vinegars.  Pile your plate high with veggies and enjoy!