Friday, June 5, 2009

Healthy Ramen Salad

Well, it is crunch time at my house. My oldest is graduating Sunday! I had breakfast with her this morning before school and my husband met her at the school door with flowers. After 10 years of homeschooling and 2 at a small Christian school, her childhood journey officially ended today!

I won't get all philosophical at the moment. This is supposed to be a recipe, right? Just letting you know WHY I am kind of quiet over here...too busy getting all the last minute stuff together to have any sort of deep pondering or wandering of any sort!

So, here is a FABULOUS salad that always gets requests. I have tweaked the more fattening original recipe through the years to make it fairly healthy. Can't tell the difference, personally!

There is a lot of room for customizing as you will see...

One package of either shredded slaw or broccoli slaw
Toast about 3 Tbl sesame seeds.
Toast 6-8 Tbl slivered or sliced almonds, Pepita's, peanuts, cashews or any combination thereof! (I toast in a heated pan, no butter, stirring frequently. You can use a tsp. of butter if you want!)

1/3 C salad oil (safflower, canola etc. Expeller pressed is healthiest!)
1/3 C beef or chicken stock/broth (beef adds more flavor)
3-4 Tbl sugar (to preference)
4-5 Tbl. white or rice vinegar (may substitute 1 or 2 T with raw apple vinegar for extra healthy oomph) to preference.
2 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp pepper
1- 1 1/2 tsp soy sauce

Optional:1-2 tsp toasted sesame oil (If you have it. Totally optional).
Optional: Grilled chicken, bite sized. Great if you have leftover chicken.
Optional: one package (MINUS THE SEASONING PACKET of Ramen Noodle soup *the cheap stuff, doesn't matter the flavor since you aren't using the packet!) Break up the noodles in the package. These are fattening and unhealthy so I don't usually use them. BUT they are tasty!!!

Do not dress salad until ready to eat! Whisk the dressing in its container immediately before pouring over slaw. Add nuts and/or noodles, stir really well and serve.

A girlfriend and I once ate a whole bowl between the two of us, it is so yummy! If you find you have more dressing then you care for, add another half to one whole package of slaw to the bowl! Enjoy!

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At the Intersection of Creation and Evolution: A Dream

The alliterating story below is based on a dream I had several years ago. Please contact me for permission to reproduce.

Darkness devours me.

I am enveloped in emptiness.

Are my eyes open or are they closed? I strain against this shroud of night and still see nothing.

What is this place?

An image illuminates in front of me. A large, leafy tree streaks past and vanishes.

It deserts me to the darkness again.

In a moment, more images appear. A rapid succession of snapshots and thoughts clamor before my eyes and mingle in my mind.

I see seedlings. Several supple shoots have emerged before me and then swiftly stream away.

“The first trees on earth were not seedlings”, my mind observes. “They were not created as small insignificant saplings.”

That thought is rapidly replaced with a vision of a man.

He’s maybe 30; he is muscular and needs to shave.

He fades away.

In his place I see an infant.

A tiny bundle of pink skin upon a soft blanket flickers briefly in my brain.

“Man was created with age,” is the next statement I hear. “Adam did not begin his life as a baby, he began as a grown man.”

The voice seems like my own.

The thoughts do not.

Reeling before me now is a blur of rivers, forests, mountains and even layers of the earth. It is like a movie rushing rapidly before my retina.

The soundtrack of this epic is proclaiming a peculiarly plain concept:

“The earth was created with age. Creation and evolution are not in total opposition. There is a reason that science finds the earth to be quite old: it was made that way.”

Thoughts continue to tumble through my mind; pictures parade before me. I listen in amazement to what seems to be puzzlingly profound and yet rather apparent all at once.

“Adam was created as an adult. Trees and plants were made fully grown.”

I suddenly feel quite certain that, if I were to chop down some of the trees that had been spoken into existence, I would find a range of rings running through their trunks.

“The earth was brought to life with age built into it… just like Adam. He did not begin life as an infant. The earth came into being with what it would need to sustain the life that was created. It was old when it was young. The world was
made with maturity; it was also produced with purpose.”

These thoughts are thrilling. Why had I not seen this before? It seems so simple. Obtusely obvious. Had others not observed this correlation? If they had, why wasn’t it being candidly conveyed?

In the span of thirty seconds I have been ravaged by a radical revelation. I feel the weight of its worth resting on me; it is tantamount to tangible.

I am neither a theologian nor am I a scientist. I don’t claim that the ethics of evolution are completely compatible with the Bible’s account of creation. But certainly Science can come concurrent to creation and affirm our faith with facts.

Of course, the Omnipotent Originator of the Universe is exceedingly elusive to what our mind could ever envision. Above what science could ever extensively elucidate.

Accordingly, creation is confounding too. Each diverse discovery deems it more marvelous to grasp. Many scientists have reluctantly relented to the theory of Intelligent Design.

That’s why, alongside those facts, we also need faith.

Lying inexplicably at the intersection of those two essential elements is an exceptional endowment: the intermittent insight of our dreams.