Bacon Roasted Grape Salad (gluten-free + dairy-free)

This Bacon Roasted Grape Salad is life-changing in it’s simplicity. Smokey, savory and a little sweet – this salad will forever change how you look at grapes!

Red Grapes

I am not one that is necessarily good with rolling with the punches and going with the flow. In many ways I am very easy going and able to just pick up and go, deal with what is handed to me and make lemons out of lemonade. On the other hand, when it comes to my work and the things I am most passionate about, it can be hard when things don’t go exactly as I planned.

This seems to be the theme of my life right now. Whether it’s rethinking my publishing schedule and the few weeks of recipes I had planned to make, due to 20+ lbs of fresh grapes coming from our grape vines or realizing the trip to San Francisco I was meant to go on with my hubby for work, just wasn’t going to happen and that he would be going alone and I would have to stay behind.

Bacon Roasted Grape Salad (gluten-free + dairy-free)

The recipe was originally meant to be shared on another website, a big time foodie site that had asked me to put together a recipe for an ongoing gluten-free column they were interested in. After working away on my pitch and this recipe, I found out that they had VERY different ideas and expectations than what I had. What they wanted and what they were willing to offer me, just didn’t add up. It meant a great deal of work for me and from their end I would barely be compensated for the groceries I would be buying. Rather than getting caught up in the glitz and glamour of their name, forgetting about the bragging rights and what it would feel like to have their name on my resume – I decided to respect myself and my work enough to say “NO!” One of the very hardest things to do, especially when my pride is concerned. So, originally this recipe wasn’t going to be shared here on Tasty Yummies today, I was saving it for a this fun new column I thought I was going to have.

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Red Grape and Goat Cheese Salad with Walnuts {gluten-free}

We’ve been living here in Southern California just over 16 months and I still wake up everyday, pinching myself that this is where I live. Palm trees, ocean air, the beach just over half a mile away. And then there is my yard! The huge vegetable garden and fruit trees galore – we have fig, peach, orange, banana, apple and loquat trees and the avocado tree! Oh, that avocado tree! Besides that avocado tree, one of my favorite things, however are the beautiful grape vines behind the house. They span the width of the entire house and then some.

Red Grape and Goat Cheese Salad with Walnuts {gluten-free}

There are several varieties of grapes growing back there – to be honest I couldn’t even tell you what they all are! I think these pictured and used in this recipe might be moscoto (red table) grapes, from the little bit of research I did online. But I haven’t a clue. I just know they are yummy and I don’t have to do much to get them to grow!

Last year, I couldn’t seem to get to the grapes before the squirrels and/or birds did, so we really didn’t get to enjoy too many. But, this year I was determined to eat more grapes than the critters and we are definitely succeeding. The first day I went out to start collecting my bounty, I came back in with over 10lbs of grapes and that wasn’t even 10% of them. We have mostly been eating them as is, bringing them to friends and freezing them for a special frosty, sweet treat – but I have also been having fun getting creative with them. Roasting and grilling them, adding them to salads, to smoothies and juices, and more. I just have to forewarn you now, you may see a decent amount of grape recipes in the coming week or two. 

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Rise // A Wild Spirit Retreat
I am super excited to announce that coming this January in Northern California, myself and my girl Vyana are hosting our first-ever retreat as Wild Spirit Retreats.

Rise // A Wild Spirit Retreat

January 23 – 26, 2015 – The Sequoia Retreat Center – California

 

Rise is an escape from the hustle

a plunge into the nourishment of presence

to walk into our shadows

hand in hand

supported by our sisters

to explore the spirit through yoga, cooking, writing, vision boarding, hiking, bodywork and more

a place to transform fear into confidence

hatred to forgiveness

jealousy to understanding

to celebrate movement and nourishment

a gathering to honor the power of being a woman

// What is Rise //

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Sweet Potato Noodles with Sage "Cream" Sauce

Yes, I am aware it is summer and a typical summer recipe, this is not. Amongst the cold salads, popsicles, ice cream and grilled stuff – I had a craving for something a bit more hearty and comforting over the weekend. I guess because of the sage, in my mind, this dish belongs more on a fall menu than summer menu – but I just couldn’t ignore this desire for something other than another cold salad.

Sweet Potato Noodles with Sage "Cream" Sauce

Although I am all about eating seasonal and celebrating the freshest local flavors, I am also all about eating intuitively. If your body wants something more hearty than a cold salad, if you are sick of the grilled veggies, or you find yourself wanting something more suited for the cool crisp weather of fall than the hot sweaty summer days – I say go for it. This obviously, like everything should be taken with a grain of salt. If your body is telling you it wants a whole cheese pizza, with a side of Doritos and a 2 liter of Coke, I am not actually suggesting you listen to that voice! You should probably kick that nasty jerk voice right out of your head space!

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