We just returned from a trip to the MidWest to surprise my dad for his 70th birthday and to visit friends in the area. I started up our food supply again yesterday by picking up some boneless, skinless chicken breast along with some other groceries. Lately, I have been boiling the chicken breast and then using it in salads or in other dishes. I save the liquid to use as a base in soups.
Last night, I introduced a new set of flavors in our series of light, summery salads, and when Brody finished his serving, he said, “It’s a keeper!” So, here it is for you….
“It’s a Keeper” Salad
Combine and enjoy:
Chopped cabbage, kale and lettuce
Diced carrots and hothouse cucumbers
Raisins and dried cranberries
Almonds and sunflower seeds
Diced chicken breast (fully cooked)
Salt and pepper
Lemon and lime zest
Notes: Since God gave the almonds and sunflower seeds enzyme inhibitors to protect them until they are ready to sprout, you may find it easier to digest them if you first soak and then dehydrate them. I soak and dehydrate these in small batches and then store them in a glass jar in the freezer. Several websites have suggestions for how to do this. Instead of buying a dehydrator, I have chosen to use my gas oven at a very low temperature (mostly the pilot light) to dehydrate the seeds and nuts. I find eating the nuts after treating them this way helps me digest them with less discomfort.
Also, lately I have chosen to buy a few limes and lemons, wash them, and then freeze them whole. When I want some zest, it is easy to zest a whole, frozen fruit. When I want the juice, I simply grate more of the fruit, beyond the zest. This way, I don’t waste any of the fruit, and it is easier to zest them frozen than when they are at room temperature.
After Brody’s comment about the salad, I started thinking about the word, “keeper,” and I was reminded of a thought I had while looking for shade on a hot day. Our trip to the MidWest reminded me of the heat and humidity that allow the land to produce such beautiful green scenery, but I am fairly sensitive to the sun and heat, so I really appreciate the shade. One day, as I was seeking the shade for relief, I remembered Psalm 121, in which the Psalmist compares the Lord to shade. Now that I am sensitive to the sun, I can more easily relate to this metaphor written by someone who knows the heat of the desert.
The Lord is your keeper;
The Lord is your shade at your right hand.
You can read the entire Psalm at Bible Gateway here. While Brody was using the word, “keeper” to mean that we like the salad and intend to save the recipe for future use, the Psalmist is using the word to mean that the Lord keeps His people from harm… that He is their protector. Our safe, uneventful travels to the MidWest, consisting of two road trips in between two airplane flights, reminded me of the truth that the Lord guards our coming and going. And one day, He will take His people home to Heaven to be with Him forever.