I’ve been fairly determined the past couple of weekends to squeeze in as much summer-awesomeness as possible. I’m already noticing back to school advertisements and even Holiday decorations (yes, really) in the stores, which is making me anxious that summer is on its way out the door. And I don’t even want to think about that right now. It gives me the stresses.
Luckily for me, living on an island means there is always an outdoor summer adventure to be had. Kayaking, biking, swimming and fishing opportunities are all within easy reach. There are plenty of ways to “cease the day” and soak up what remains of these long, hot summer days.
But all this activity requires food. Both for energy and for my overall mental stability. Because I really don’t like to be hungry. I turn into the Hulk when I’m hungry. And it’s not pretty.
So to keep myself in check, I always carry around something to eat. Blue Diamond Almonds are one of my favorite grab-and-go snacks for short jaunts. Their containers are the perfect size for stashing in your bag (not too bulky!) and they have a tight fitting lid to avoid spillage. And not to mention they have a ton of amazing flavors to choose from. But for longer adventures, I like to go the extra mile and bring something along with me that’s a bit more substantial. Like these Wheat Berry and Blistered Tomato Mason Jar Salads with Basil-Almond Pesto.
To make a good Mason jar salad, there are just a few little tricks to remember. Like always put your dressing and sturdier ingredients (grains and beans) at the bottom. Keep lighter, more fragile items (salad greens) near the top. And try to avoid ingredients that will spoil quickly. Also, don’t over pack the jars, because a little wiggle room is necessary to help distribute the ingredients once you’re ready to eat.
I chose wheat berries as my base for this salad, because they have a great chewy texture that I find super satisfying when I’m absolutely starving. But you could certainly use farro or quinoa, if you prefer. I topped the wheat berries with some summertime favorites: cherry tomatoes, eggplant and arugula. And I made up a dairy free basil pesto with Lightly Salted Blue Diamond Almonds. Big flavor, small container. That’s how you get things done when you’re on the go!
While I certainly recommend storing all perishable food items at the proper temperature, I did enjoy my salad after it had been kicking around in my backpack for about 3 to 4 hours. And I lived to tell about it. Just putting that out there.