Good Morning, and Happy Memorial Day Weekend! I’m currently typing while enjoying a gorgeous view of Lake Michigan and a weekend of relaxation. Not bad at all. This is one of the first holiday weekends in many years where we’ve been able to dedicate to family time without work or other commitments, and I can’t believe how relaxing it has been. This is such an important weekend to honor those who have served in the military, including my late grandfathers as well as cousins. Thank you for all that you’ve done and continue to do.
Memorial Day is also unofficially about celebrating the kickoff of summer, and in our house that involves picnics, bonfires and beach sand. Low carb picnicking can be just as tasty as the regular version, with a spread of grilled meats and tasty salads that will satisfy all manner of eaters. This incredibly simple recipe that I’m sharing today makes the perfect summer salad. Fork tender broccoli, crunchy bacon and almonds, all spun with creamy and tangy dressing. I like to have this salad on hand a lot, but it most certainly make a perfect summer picnic or barbeque food. There are a billion different versions of this salad on the internet and at every deli counter, some involving sunflower seeds, shredded cheese and dried fruit. I prefer to keep it basic, but feel free to mix it up as you see fit. For me it’s all about the texture and crunch.
Wherever you are this weekend, I hope you’re taking a few moments to enjoy the holiday!
Yield: 4 servings
4 cups broccoli florets
1/4 cup sliced almonds
3 tbsp red onion, finely diced
12 slices bacon + 1/2 tbsp. reserved drippings
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup mayo
salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp granulated erithrytol or comparable sugar substitute (optional)
– Start by cooking your bacon and having it ready to complete the recipe. Cover a baking sheet in tin foil and lay out the bacon strips flat on the cookie sheet.
-Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes, or to your desired level of doneness. In my house we like bacon that is cooked through but not too crispy, and I find 18 minutes is generally a good rule of thumb. When done, transfer bacon to a cooking rack on a cookie sheet to allow the excess fat to drip off.
-Wash and drain broccoli and cut into small, bite-sized florets. Discard any extra stems.
-Bring a pot of water to a rolling boil. Once water is boiling, turn off the heat and drop in broccoli florets for 3 minutes. Let them brighten and soften so they are fork-tender but not mushy. Drain water and set aside.
-In a prep bowl, whisk together mayo, apple cider vinegar, 1/2 tbsp. bacon grease, erithrytol and salt and pepper. Drop in broccoli, red onion and crumbled bacon. Stir to combine with dressing. Top with slivered almonds and add additional salt and pepper if needed.
-Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving to allow the ingredients to absorb the dressing. Serve and enjoy!
Nutritional Information per serving: 408 calories, 36.2 grams fat, 5 grams carbohydrate, 2.3 grams dietary fiber, 2.7 grams net carbohydrate, 5 grams protein.