Saturday, May 21, 2011

Arugula and Madjool Date Salad

The world today is complex. With technology changing the way we interact, do business and exchange information, it can be a bit overwhelming sometimes. Granted, it is very exciting but who can live without their smart phone?  Sometimes the simplest things that life has to offer are quite often the most enjoyed. “Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” ~Confucius

This quote is quite inspirational and makes you think about your approach to how you live each day. Understandably, we all have crazy busy days with work, family, obligations and commitments. Thought I would share a quick list (the list could go on for days) of the simple things in life that I enjoy.

A few favorite simple things:

  • The euphoric feeling after a good workout
  • The first cup of coffee in the morning
  • The smell of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies
  • A hug from my hubby
  • Doing a good deed for the day
  • Smiling
  • A whiff of my favorite fragrance
  • Reading a "page turner" novel
  • Taking an afternoon nap
  • Playing a card game
  • Laying on the grass looking up at the clouds
  • Listening to my favorite play list
  • Watching a great movie at home with freshly popped popcorn
  • Sleeping in a freshly made bed and the smell of those sheets
  • Having a great laugh
  • Riding a rollercoaster
  • The scent of fresh cut grass
  • Spending time with my family
  • Cooking and baking
  • Watching it rain
  • People watching
  • Enjoying a favorite glass of wine with cheese
  • Driving in my car after it has been washed
  • Petting my doggie
  • Looking at photos of favorite memories
  • Having lunch at a great restaurant with friends
  • Watching television with my hubby
  • Reading cookbooks
  • Going to the farmers market
  • Planting flowers
  • Entertaining and making people happy
What are the simple things in life that you enjoy?

Arugula and Madjool Date Salad

4 to 5 C. Arugula leaves
10 Madjool Dates, pitted and chopped
½ to ¾ C. Shaved Parmesan Reggiano Cheese

Dijon Vinaigrette

4 T. Olive oil
1 t. Dijon mustard
1 T. Lemon juice
½ t. Salt
8 to 10 grinds fresh ground pepper

Put all of the above ingredients into a plastic container with a lid. Shake until well combined. Taste and adjust seasonings to your taste level.


In a large bowl add the Arugula, dates and parmesan reggiano and then drizzle the vinaigrette and toss. Taste along the way to find the right balance of dressing ratio to salad.


  1. I think your favorites are my favorites. Love all the shaved parmesan on this salad. I'm so glad I'm not the only one who looks at food before eating, it's always a bad idea though, huh. Can't wait to see you at the brunch.

  2. Thank you Lisa...for a very uplifting post (I've been feeling very blue these days). I need to make a list like this. It's these simple things that all to often are taken for granted, but are important nuggets to cherish and remember that life is good.

    This gorgeous, clean arugula salad is a mood changer too. I'd like a serving or two, right now!

    Have a great rest of the weekend! =)

  3. Lovely salad and nice to know more things about you :)

  4. So true! I'm so glad to hear that your list could go on forever - it reflects what a content person you are. We share many of the same favorites - since its Saturday, I could go for the delicious afternoon nap and then a favorite wine with cheese:) Salads are a food that I crave and I love the flavors in this one!

  5. Wow Lisa, we have a lot in common, your list just put a smile on my face and another big surprise, I'm making arugula salad for dinner tonight. I'm adding grilled corn to mine and one more thing, I'm just about to grab a glass of wine;-)

  6. I love the simplicity of this dish:) how lovely!

  7. This post is a great reminder of what really matters in life. I think most of the items on your list would appear on mine, too. :-)

    This salad may be simple but it's not short on elegance and taste. Doesn't get better than that!

    Happy Sunday, Lisa. :-)

  8. Beautiful. Simple. Inspiring. Thank you!

  9. That is a wonderful post and an elegant salad..I loved the use of dates..
    I love your list and would probably add

    a warm bath
    a walk with a friend
    doing something you didn't think you could do :)

  10. You sound like a lovely person and this is a lovely salad that I think I'll make for lunch today. Congrats on making the Top 9 on Foodbuzz.

  11. Love your favourite simple things list, reminded me of things that make me feel good too!

  12. Arugula with dates - sounds perfect. Lovely simple salad. Congrats on Top 9!

  13. What a lovely salad! Thank you for sharing :)


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  14. A glass of wine while I'm waiting for the grilled dinner to be done.
    A hot bath with that page turner.
    Snuggling with my daughter while watching a movie.
    My son actually wanting to sit and chat for more than 30 seconds.

    Yep... it's nice to sit back and enjoy!

    Love the salad! I've been obsessed with arugula of late, and this is right up my alley. Lovely photos and Congrats on the Top 9!!!

  15. Wow, that's a lovely list...I'm not sure what I can consider simple in life. I find everything I do in life is complicated. My research, cooking, family, I love it and challenging at the same time.

    That's a wonderful and light salad. Love the flavors.

  16. There are so many awesome things on your list! My simple pleasures....cuddling with my husband, taking a nap and using my puppy's body as a pillow, coffee on the patio first thing in the morning and a glass of wine on the patio as my husband grills :) Thank you for making me smile tonight!

  17. What a beautiful salad. I love dates and haven't added them to salad before. I'll have to try this.
    I love a bagel in the morning. That's my simple pleasure. :)

  18. I LOVE your list! And I would copy it word for word to list my favorite simple things.

    The salad sounds terrific!


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