Papayas and avocados make a delicious mix layered atop fresh greens, along with some zucchini angelhair pasta or grated jicima, and topped with a Coconut-Lime Juice Dressing. After I prepared the salad and took the photographs, Rex and I sat out on our little deck that overlooks the woods of Fairhaven Park, and savored our succulent and tangy meal. The apricot colored fruit enticed us, and green was all around, from the greens in the salad, and the thousands of green leaves shimmering in the sun, nourishing us in countless ways.
Ingredients: Serves 2
3-4 cups salad greens of your favorite kind, chopped (we like butter lettuce or the sweet inner leaves of romaine)
1/2 to 1 cup papaya chunks
1/2 cup zucchini pasta ribbons, and/or 1/2 cup jicima, grated
1 small, or 1/2 to 3/4 large Hass avocado, peeled, pitted, and sliced
2 tablespoons green onions, finely chopped
Handful of walnuts, almonds, or cashews, and a few raisins
Rinse greens, pat dry, and tear or chop. Transfer to a serving platter.
Rinse zucchini, shake off excess water, and make angelhair pasta with a Saladacco, or spiralizer.
If you opt for jicima, peel and grate.
Rinse papaya, cut in half, remove seeds and skin, and slice.
Lay zucchini pasta ribbons and/or jicima on top of greens.
Put slices of avocado on next, then the papaya.
Sprinkle with green onions, and toss on the nuts and raisins for crunch and sweetness.
Coconut-Lime Juice Dressing:
For the simplest dressing, squeeze lime juice on top of salad. Or make this dressing with the juice of 1 lime (squeezed in a citrus press), 2-3 teaspoons honey, 1 small clove garlic, pressed, and 3-4 tablespoons of coconut oil, or your favorite. Mix well.
The Little Story: Hidden Treasures
Fruits and veggies have such amazing colors and shapes. The photo here shows a flower pattern that I discovered inside of the papaya on the day I made this salad. The flower design jumped out at me when I cut across the length, close to the end where there aren't any of the black, pungent seeds. I sucked in my breath at this delightful discovery because I've never seen a papaya flower before, and the pattern was so perfect it could have been painted.
But there was more. This flower pattern sent me a message: It said, enjoy life, and look for hidden treasures.
How often do I not see what's lying right under the most obvious layers of my life? Much like papaya or apple stars, I love knowing that these living shapes are embedded in the fruits when I'm preparing them for a meal.
A few days later as I was looking from the upstairs dining room window, I did a complete double-take because I spotted a perfectly shaped heart on one of the trunks of the trees in our woodsy back yard.
I went outside right away to photograph it, and found that water had caused the mark. (I had originally thought it was made from moss.) But what are the odds of this even happening? I couldn't have drawn a heart any better if I'd tried. It was another hidden treasure, and it felt like something magical had taken place, that there was a message for me to understand.
In dreams, flowers represent God's love to me. The papaya flower spoke to me about this love that may be hidden, but is still here. The tree heart told me that love is all around us, if we just look for it, and that an abundance of treasures are to be found in an awakened heart.
Now that I see a theme developing, I'll be watchful to find more of the gifts of the Creator, right in my consciousness, right in my kitchen, and right in my own back yard.