This simple Sweet and Spicy Spiralized Cucumber Tomato Arugula Salad is refreshing, light and delicious.
This past week, we had a bonus session for our Daniel Plan study on Happiness and Contentment.Now that I knowIcontrol at least 40% of how I feel, and I know the 8 factors that contribute to emotional and mental stability , I am hoping to change my outlook on life for the better, especially when times get tough. I am also hoping to get the word out – just think if everyone had this information, we’d have a lot more happy people surrounding us. I’m sharing this list in this post again because I believe it is such important information that everyone should have access to. If you want a copy to print out, click here .
Now onto this Sweet and Spicy Spiralized Cucumber Tomato Arugula Salad. One of my friends texted me how good this spiralized cucumber salad is because she knows I recently bought a spiralizer .
This salad is super easy to make. First, start with a bed of baby arugula.
Then, spiralize a bunch of cucumbers into “noodles.”
Add sliced cherry tomatoes.
Sprinkle with red pepper flakes.
The fabulous Chef Neena of Grace Farms demonstrated this recipe for our Daniel Plan meeting.
This recipe makes a good amount, so feel free to halve the recipe. You can also substitute a zucchini or two for a few of the cucumbers if you want to add more texture to this salad.
This past week, we had a bonus session for our Daniel Plan study group on Happiness and Contentment. Did you know that happiness depends 50% on your genetics, 40% on your internal state of mind, and 10% on life’s circumstances? That means we have control of at least 40% how we feel.
Our special speaker was the Community Pastor for Grace Community Church . He talked aboutan eye-opening study on happiness performed by Duke University that found 8 factors contribute greatly to emotional and mental stability:
These points are all worth thinking about – I know I have experienced all 8 of these at some point in my life. Just think if everyone in the world had access to these 8 items and made a conscious decision to live each of these out on a daily basis, how different would our outlook on life be?
I highly recommend printing this list out and posting it somewhere that you can see it on a daily basis as a reminder that we cancontrol 40% of our happiness.
Click here to download this list .
8 factors that contribute to your emotional and mental stability – download this chart for free
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Please share this post if you found it helpful – if even one person can be happier as a result, it’s so worth it!
I’ve been working on my enchilada game lately, for both the cookbook and my next blog post (coming Monday!). There is an art to making great enchiladas, and the sauce is a key component.
I thought I’d share my tested and perfected enchilada sauce recipe today, in case you want to try it on your favorite enchilada recipe. It’s ready in under ten minutes, and I promise, it’s so tasty you won’t want to go back to the store-bought kind again. As a bonus, unlike the canned varieties, this homemade sauce is free of unnecessary processed ingredients and MSG (that’s monosodium glutamate, which gives my mom migraines).
When I developed my go-to sauce (first seen on my spinach artichoke enchiladas ), I tried at least five of the top sauce recipes on Google, all with different ingredients and techniques. I tried making sauce with tomato sauce, which tasted too raw and was kind of goopy. I tried making sauce with blended diced tomatoes, and it had the same issues. I tried sauce without any tomato ingredients, and it didn’t taste quite like the enchilada sauce I grew up with, or the sauce at my favorite Mexican restaurants. I tried sauces made without any thickener (like flour or cornstarch), and they pooled at the bottom and turned my enchiladas into a soupy, texture-less casserole.
Finally, after some experimentation and cross-referencing with America’s Test Kitchen , I landed on the perfect sauce. Vegetable broth forms the base of the sauce, but it’s only added after you make a simple roux of flour and oil. You need a full three tablespoons of each to properly thicken the sauce. I tried making this sauce with a gluten-free flour blend and that worked great as well.
This sauce is full of authentic Mexican flavor, thanks to a combination of dried spices, which are sautéed in oil to bring out their best, and umami-rich tomato paste. I made the cinnamon in my recipe optional, since some people just don’t like it in savory applications, but a pinch adds such a nice warmth and complexity. The final kicker is a tiny splash of vinegar, which really amps up the flavor.
I love this sauce, and I’m confident you will, too, since it’s already gotten rave reviews on the spinach artichoke enchiladas. I’m sorry to make you wait a few days for the enchiladas you’ll see in the last photo, but they are worth it, promise!
Author: Cookie and Kate
Recipe type: Condiment
Serves: 2 cups
Enchilada sauce adapted from my spinach artichoke enchiladas . Make it gluten free: Just use gluten-free all-purpose flour blend. I tried with Bob’s Red Mill brand and it worked great. Make it tomato free: You can omit the tomato paste. You might want to up the spices a bit. The sauce won’t taste quite like the enchilada sauce you might buy at the store, but it will still be good! Change it up: The chili powder, cumin and garlic powder are essential here, but feel free to change up the other spices to suit your preferences.
Did you make this recipe?
Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #cookieandkate!
Welcome to April! We’re in full spring mode here in Kansas City, but I’ve caught glimpses of snow on Snapchat, so I won’t go on about it. Spring is definitely coming and I hope you all see fresh green leaves soon. I’m so glad to find more fresh, local options popping up. What are you most looking forward to cooking this month? Find my picks below!
Don’t forget to post photos on Instagram when you make a recipe shown here—tag your photo #cookieandkate so we can all see. If you’re eager for even more cooking inspiration, check out my full April seasonal post here .
Gluten free and easily vegan
“This is an easy and very tasty way to prepare asparagus. I could eat it every day. My 8 year old loves it too. I add parmesan and lemon. I roast the aspargus in my oven for 9 minutes. Thank you for the recipe!” – Anna
More asparagus recipes »
“Just made this for dinner tonight for probably the 6th time. My 4 year old looked in the bowl and said this is his favorite dinner (which he says about pretty much anything with avocado – but I still like to hear it). I didn’t have the nori today but the rice is still delicious without it!!” – Alex
More avocado recipes »
Gluten free and vegan
“This could be THE best salad I have ever made. I have a vegan friend who I am always trying to find interesting recipes for and she also loved it. I made it exactly as per your recipe apart from adding a mixture of toasted almond flakes and pumpkins seeds.” – Heather
More beet recipes »
“This was so good! I’ve been trying to find one dish recipes that can also feed baby and this was perfect! I was almost too lazy to make the breadcrumbs but I’m so glad I did because it was simple and and so worth it! I also used a bit of cauliflower because I had it and it was good in there too. I think I’m going to make this again and bring it to Easter! It’s a perfect healthier version of a classic!” – Stephanie
More broccoli recipes »
Gluten free and vegan
“Made this for dinner last night and it was wonderful! I can hardly wait for my Love and Lemons cookbook to arrive tomorrow. Thank you again” – Luann
More Brussels sprout recipes »
Gluten free and vegan
“Super easy to make and delicious, to boot! I forgot to pick up carrots so mine was cabbage only. Didn’t matter, my taste buds were beyond pleased.” – Sondra
More cabbage recipes »
“Um, YES! I made this recipe one day when I had cauliflower and farrow and didn’t know what to do with it.. holy wow! I skipped the feta for dairy sensitivity’s sake, and it was STILL full of awesome flavors. I could have eaten it every day for two weeks. So tasty! Love the combo of olives and sun-dried tomatoes! Thank you for this great recipe!” – Laura
More cauliflower recipes »
“It turned out just perfect! Thank you for this wonderful recipe!” – Yelena
More lemon recipes » (also grapefruit , orange , lime and clementine )
Gluten free and easily vegan
“We absolutely LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this salad. Our crowd includes a 4 and 6 yr old. Your recipes are all delicious and we have greatly enjoyed so many of them.” – Leigh
More arugula recipes » (also spinach )
Eeks! I don’t have any leek recipes on the blog. I’ll have to remedy that in time for next month.
Leek recipes on Love and Lemons »
“You just won my meat-eating friends over with this quiche! They’re going to be running over to C+K now for recipes! Thanks again for another hit! It’s so easy to be a “chef” with these fail proof recipes!” – Deepthi
More mushroom recipes »
Vegetarian like the rest!
“I just made this recipe for my super cute little sister’s breakfast. HA! But she hates peas so I prepared it without peas. I just ate one and still delicious. Thanks!” – Vanessa
More pea recipes »
Gluten free and easily vegan
“This. This was what I wanted tonight. Thank you for an amazing dinner!” – Debra
More radish recipes »
“I made this for supper tonight, and I love it! There might not be leftovers for tomorrow’s lunch. My grocery store didn’t have sumac, but I’ll have to get some for next time, because I’m definitely making it again!” – Emilie
More sweet potato recipes »
Don’t forget to tag your recipe photos #cookieandkate so we can all see them! If you’re looking for an ingredient that didn’t make the list, check my new ingredient index for relevant recipes.
More resources you might appreciate: 13 make-ahead breakfast recipes , 16 recipes that pack well for lunch and 14 simple weeknight dinners . You can shop my essential kitchen equipment here . Don’t forget to follow us on Pinterest for a steady stream of recipe inspiration!
This Avocado Green Goddess Dip is creamy and delicious – serve with lots of fresh vegetables for your next party.
Last Wednesday, we had our sixth session for our Daniel Plan series. We had covered each of the five essentials of the Daniel Plan leading up to this session ( Faith , Food , Fitness , Focus and Friends ), so our sixth session was on Living the Lifestyle – how to incorporate all these essentials into our life going forward.
I had been praying that we could find a special speaker for this session (we had special speakers for each of our five essentials sessions), but was unsuccessful. A few peoplesuggested we ask some of the ladies in our group give testimonies – I thought this was a great idea, exceptI didn’t think anyone would want to get up in front of everyone to share their story. We had been breaking out into smaller groups each session, and these small groups have been a great way for everyone to talk in a more intimate setting. So, I was hoping to get someone to get up in front of everyone to speak, then we could break into smaller groups.
Well, sometimes our prayers are answered, but not in the way we are hoping for….I ended up being the special speaker. For those of you who know me, you know that I am an introvert, and that I hate getting up in front of a crowd and speaking, let alone sharing my personal story. Yet, over the past six weeks, I have been called to put this Daniel Plan series together for an incredible group of women, and have had the privilege of witnessing how this study has literally changed their lives, in small and big ways.
Personally, I have grown so much over the past month and a half – I have had to do many things outside of my comfort zone, including praying in front of a group – up until six weeks ago, I have only prayed with my own family. Although going into the program, I thought my Faithwas pretty strong, I unexpectedly grew in my faith. I had to trust God each week – to take away my anxiety leading each week’s study, to bless each of the women in the study that they might take away something from each session, and to help each of the special speakers deliver a message that would touch the hearts and minds of our participants.
I grew in each of the other four areas too. In the area of Food, I’ve been eating a lot less starchy carbs, more non starchy vegetables, leafy green vegetables, smaller portions of protein, and eating closer to The Daniel Plan “Perfect Plate .”
In the area of Fitness, my S.M.A.R.T. goal is to exercise at least five times a week, which I have been able to successfully achieve for the past six weeks and intend to continue to meet. The key has been to exercise at least one day on the weekend (in case there’s a weekday I don’t do it) andto mix up my routine – going to the gym, doing The Daniel Plan fitness video, trying Tai Chi, and walking outside.
In the area of Focus, I have been reading three to four devotions each morning (my favorites are Jesus Calling by Sarah Young, Having a Heart for God by Tracy Baumer Fox, and a daily devotion the Community Pastor from Grace Community Church has been sending to our group), which has really helped put things in perspectivebefore my day starts.
And in the last area of Friends, I have been able to have deeper conversations with women in our group that I never had before, about life’s challenges, and about faith, an area that is not the typical conversation that one might have over coffee or lunch.
I have been so encouraged by this Daniel Plan study and I know it is a lifelong journey that is just beginning. What started out as an “activity” to get me out of the house this past winter, and to jumpstart my health for the Spring, has turned out to be so much bigger and better than I could ever have imagined. God is so good – He gives us more than we can ever expect or imagine when we least expect it.
Like thiscreamy Avocado Green Goddess Dip that I made forour meeting last week, developing ahealthy lifestyle is a process, but once it comes together, it all makes sense, and delivers a pleasing result.
Adapted from Cooking Light. For a vegan version, leave out the anchovies and add a few dashes of soy sauce if you like.