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Awards, Sunshine and Roasted Veggie Salad with Lime Cilantro Vinaigrette

Since getting in my car accident a couple of weeks back, I’m afraid I’ve fallen utterly behind on some important things. Three of those are awards given to me by some amazing women who always delight and inspire me with their blogs. My response has been delayed, but today is the day! Time for acknowledgment, gratitude, and passing on the love. 🙂

The first is the TAQ Photography Award from my friend Chaya at Sweet and Savory Says It All. Chaya is a loving, cozy lady who is constantly whipping up delicious and gluten-free dishes for her hubby and family. She is so encouraging and kind, and helped me immeasurably when I first started blogging. Thank you SO much, Chaya! 🙂

Now I get to pass the award along to 6 other bloggers whose photography I love, then I’m supposed to share some of my own favorite photos with you.

Justin Pearson – he did absolutely gorgeous photos of my brother and sister-in-law’s wedding
Emblem Photography – my uber-talented cousins, Dustin and Christy
Mae Chapman Photography – I love my friend Rebekah’s wonderful retro images
Leslie Pearson – my talented artist friend Leslie, who records her stunning artwork through video and stills
Morning Light In My Room – Yvette has the most dreamy photos, all from within the confines of her room
Passage Paradis – I just discovered her and love her documentations of her travels.

I’ll share two photos with you. One that makes my heart peaceful and one that makes me want to go exploring. 🙂

This is one of my favorite photos I’ve ever taken, on the terrace of an Italian villa. 
The serenity, warmth and quiet it conveys are precious to me.

I so love this doorway – a stone arch at an old fort in Budva, Montenegro. It draws me in and makes me want to step right through and see what’s on the other side. 🙂 One of these days I’ll SHOW you! 🙂

Second is the Creativer Writer Blogger Award from a dear Portuguese lass at VanillaStrawberrySpringFields. She has been an amazing support and daily cheerleader. Her warm heart and loving nature delight all who know her. Thank you so much, dear Vanilla girl! 🙂

Third is the Sunshine Award from my new friend Sarah at Maison Cupcake. I love her weekly Postcard posts from her jaunts around Europe, and her scrumptious macarons and other delectables are simply dreamy. Thank you muchly, dear Sarah! 🙂

Earlier this week I was so happy to have three whole days of glorious sunshine! My apartment is so situated that I get the full benefit of afternoon sun without any of the icy wind. Hooray! I spent many a happy hour resting my injured self, laying in the sunshine reading great books, taking naps or just enjoying the peaceful do-nothingness of the day.

The topsy-turvy view from my comfy resting spot. 
It felt so bright and sunshiny that I was inspired to bring a bit of summer into my wintry world. I hauled out my collection of sundresses and wore one all day, feeling so spoiled. 🙂
I tended to my little potted herb garden, so delighted to see that three plants survived the winter!!! 
Tiny purple blossoms on the rosemary – a wonderful herb for poaching salmon.
 Can’t wait to roast chicken with this lovely variegated sage.

Beautiful lavender, almost ready to be steeped into a fragrant tisane.

Then I was starving hungry and turned to one of my favorite summery recipes: Roasted Veggie Salad with Lime Cilantro Vinaigrette. I tossed artichoke hearts, fresh green beans and corn with olive oil, salt and pepper, and dried cilantro, spread them on a cookie sheet and roasted 20-30 minutes until they were beautifully caramelized with lovely crispy bits.

Then I tossed everything together with shredded chicken and a lime cilantro vinaigrette. Eaten warm or cold, it is my wintry culinary homage to summer. 🙂

Roasted Veggie Salad with Lime Cilantro Vinaigrette

Salad Ingredients:

Big handful fresh green beans, remove strings and cut in 2 inch pieces
2 cups fresh, frozen or canned corn
1 can quartered artichoke hearts, packed in water
1/4 cup olive oil
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 cup shredded chicken

Salad Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. In separate bowls, toss vegetables with olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic. Arrange on baking sheet and roast 20-30 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes to prevent burning. 
  3. Set aside to cool. 
  4. Combine with chicken and vinaigrette. Serve warm or cold.

Vinaigrette Ingredients:

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Juice of 3 limes
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
ground pepper to taste
1/3 cup olive oil

Vinaigrette Directions:

  1. Combine everything but olive oil. 
  2. Add oil in stead stream, whisking until well incorporated. 
  3. Pour over salad and toss until evenly coated.
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