Quick Chew Your Smoothie Salad

by Maria Theresa Maggi on January 29, 2015

Quick Chew Your Smoothie Salad

My English teacher during my sophomore year in high school once told me in exasperation that I was an “agitator.” Perhaps she is right. But it wasn’t until I was in grad school that a close friend of mine described my style of “agitating” to a tee. Her description went like this: “Maria, it’s as if there’s a whole ballroom of people waltzing away in gowns having a grand time. You are standing at the entrance, and without any of the dancers noticing, you deftly knock a crochet ball through the door and across the hardwood floor. No one knows where it came from, but suddenly everyone is out of step trying to negotiate the croquet balls you send in, one at a time. . .”

Well, I have to admit, I liked that description of how I stir up trouble. So just think of this quick chew-your-smoothie salad as a tasty croquet ball.

It’s not that I am going to preach the no smoothies sermon. In fact I got the idea for this simple little salad when I had the flu and saw this  Naked Turmeric Tonic drink from Naked Magazine. Orange food cheers and warms me up when I am sick or low, so I decided to make it.

There’s just one problem: there’s no high speed blender in my kitchen to whir this up into a creamy orange drink. And beyond thatthere’s a bigger glitch: I’d rather chew my food. I have to be pretty sick to want to drink it instead.

Long long before Dr. Esselstyn and others began to say it’s better to chew the food we eat, little old foodie me had figured out that if I drank my breakfast I felt robbed of the pleasure of chewing. And I was often still hungry. So I’ve long thought it was in my best interest to make sure I got to chomp on most everything I consume in a day.  You may call a goat. I am, after all, a Capricorn. Or a horse. The chewing profile of both animals suits me nicely and I have the astrological chart to prove it.

When I was sick I chose a middle path. I whirred the ingredients for the naked turmeric tonic up in my regular blender on “chop” or “grate.” This gave me sort of vegetable-fruit-turmeric “frosty” I could eat-slurp with a spoon that still had little tiny pieces of carrot and orange pulp to chew on, which I considered the best of both worlds. I sprinkled the top with cinnamon and ginger, and drizzled a little lemon or lime juice over it.

my naked tumeric tonic  "frosty style" made in a not so high speed blender

my naked turmeric tonic “frosty style” made in a not so high speed blender

But once the fever was over and I was well on the mend, I couldn’t resist adding some greens, onion, and bell pepper and making this into a little salad. Just to see. And to chew.

If you like to waltz through your breakfast each morning with a smoothie as all or part of it, well, you have my blessing. Just step over this little “croquet ball” of a salad and keep right on with your splendid Vitamix. But if you’d also like to chew the ingredients of this turmeric tonic along with some greens, then give this little sweet-tart-crunchy easy salad a try.


Either way you take this tonic, it’s a big help when you’re feeling congested, achy or just plain under the weather. Thanks to the folks at Naked Magazine.  I raise my glass–and also my fork–to however you decide to try it. Happy waltzing through the options.

Maria (moonwatcher)


Leave a Comment

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Carrie January 30, 2015 at 10:08 am

This is right up my alley. I was sipping my salads long before I even knew what a smoothie was and I’m always looking for new & fun ways to use Turmeric. Thanks for this and all your ideas. Let those crochet balls fly!


2 moonwatcher January 30, 2015 at 10:28 am

Oh wonderful Carrie! You made me laugh! Here’s to sipping our salads and flying crochet balls!! 🙂


3 angela January 30, 2015 at 4:36 pm

This is so pretty Maria – you can even forget that it’s so good for you : )

Love pretty bowls too. Another great piece of inspiration from you Maria. Thank you.

Love Angela X


4 moonwatcher January 30, 2015 at 6:57 pm

OH thank you angela! I think it’s pretty too, especially on a winter day. 🙂


5 Gena February 4, 2015 at 10:28 am

I love smoothies, but I prefer them as refreshing snacks than as meals. I, too, derive most satisfaction from sitting down to a plate of food that I can chew, and I also really love varied textures. Breakfast salads are great, but I don’t make them often enough — you just inspired me!


6 moonwatcher February 4, 2015 at 4:10 pm

Thanks Gena! 🙂 Yes, a smoothie is almost always a snack for me, too–or a “dessert. It makes sense to me you are one of us who enjoys sitting down to a plate of foo you can chew because your own recipes do have such sumptuous textures. Glad to inspire you to have a breakfast salad now and again! 🙂


7 Juicers 2015 February 4, 2015 at 12:35 pm

Agree with Gena. Smoothies are great for pick up snacks not so much as meal replacements. But that’s just me.


8 moonwatcher February 4, 2015 at 4:11 pm

Thanks Juicers 2015–and welcome to my blog! 🙂


9 Veronica February 5, 2015 at 8:58 am

I’m actually not much of a breakfast person at all; but I do eat it, and I, too, prefer chewing it over having a smoothie. It somehow makes me fuller, even if it’s exactly the same thing. I love how you stir up trouble – innocently and yet purposefully. 🙂
The salad breakfast looks delish! I never would have thought to add cinnamon to spinach…


10 moonwatcher February 5, 2015 at 9:38 am

Hi Veronica–well, I love your description of how I “stir up” trouble. . .and I guess I need to clarify here for you and Gena that I actually ate this salad at lunchtime. But I DO eat a kale breakfast salad with quinoa nearly every darn morning. And I wouldn’t be opposed to eating this one for breakfast. 🙂 Cinnamon and spinach are gold together. I learned that from Lorna Sass’s old book Short Cut Vegetarian. She has a spinach lentil ragout in there that uses orange juice and zest and cinnamon as flavorings. Heaven!


11 Lee at Veggie Quest February 7, 2015 at 12:00 pm

Hi Maria! I love a smoothie, but this salad sounds delicious. I also like the idea of adding anti-inflammatory turmeric to a salad or smoothie. Thanks for sharing! 🙂


12 moonwatcher February 7, 2015 at 4:12 pm

Thanks for your input Lee–always good to hear from you. I’m glad you like the idea of adding the turmeric to a smoothie or salad. 🙂


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