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  • Mary Kay

Roll Up LOW-CAL Eating with Walk-Around-Romaine-Wraps

This is the skinny on eating better!

I love the crunch of romaine letter wrapped around tuna salad with walnuts and dried cranberries. It’s so refreshing to have a “sandwich” without bread.

The crunch-worthiness makes it well worth it to make the sandwich with any lettuce you have on hand, but the long romaine lettuce leaves make it easier to roll, especially when you’re spreading a nice mayo-rich tuna salad on top of it.

Spread it down the long center, add walnuts, dried cranberries or other toppings you like and crunch away.

It’s easy and quick! And, don’t tell anyone that it’s healthier than the high sodium, high fat, high carb content of most of the fast food available. Plus, you won't feel like you need to take a nap like after a big fast food, high caloric lunch. This is fast food with positive flavor - without all the negative contents.

Romaine lettuce can be found in most any grocery store’s produce aisle. Take a look at what they have available. Is it in a box or a bag? Are the leaves attached as one plant? That’s what I look for. It seems fresher when I get the entire clump of a plant. Plus, I like the variety of leaf sizes, depending on what I’m making.

I always rinse the leaves off since they are usually tightly packed and they grow naturally with loose openings at the top where dirt and bugs can get in. For instance, when I cleaned the Romaine today, I found 4 little tiny bugs and a bit of dirt near the bottom of the leaves where they are connected. No big deal, I just cleaned them out with my fingers under cool water and patted them dry with a cotton kitchen towel. Some people dry them on paper towels, but I find that’s not necessary. That practice just adds more trash at the landfill, unnecessarily.

Choose the size leaves you like. Some will probably be too large – I like the medium to small sizes for the amount of salad I like to spread on them.

Fix your favorite tuna salad with mayo or Miracle Whip, onions, celery, and any other healthy veggies you like diced in the salad. Layer some lengthwise pickles along the side and spice them the way you like – salt, pepper, Italian herbs, hot pepper and roll up. Today I filled a couple with Doug’s homemade pea salad and sprinkled them with sliced almonds. There you have some handy little Walk-Around-Romaine-Wraps.

This recipe serves 1-2 people for lunch.

Prep your bowl:

I use an 8” low-sided bowl for my walk around wraps. The low sides help support the leaves once they are filled.

Gather your Walk-Around-Romaine-Wraps Ingredients:

4 Romaine larger leaves as support in a low sided bowl

A drizzle of vinaigrette dressing

4 Romaine smaller leaves to fill with salad

½ C Tuna, drained, with a little mayo or Miracle Whip

½ C Pea Salad with noodles and a little mayo or Miracle Whip

½ C Walnuts, broken in half

½ C Almonds, sliced

¼ C Cranberries, dried

¼ C Blueberries, dried

1 C Croutons, homemade with olive oil and herbs or from the store

Salt and pepper to flavor

Other herbs you like to sprinkle

Construct your Walk-Around-Romaine-Wraps:

- On the low-rimmed bowl, lay the four larger romaine leaves as support.

- Drizzle with vinaigrette.

- Fill the smaller 4 romaine leaves evenly with the tuna and pea salad.

- Garnish with healthy crunchies and fruit such as dried cranberries, dried blueberries, walnuts, almonds, and croutons. - - Feel free to sub other healthy fruits or to garnish with peeled orange slices.

- Stack them on top of the larger romaine leaves.

- ENJOY with a low-cal or no-cal flavored water or spritzer. Plus, you have a little lettuce to eat after you finish off the romaine wraps. The leaves underneath your wraps are a bonus with the vinaigrette drizzled on them.

Get the kids involved. This is something that’s easy for them to make. It’s a good chance for them to learn about the bright flavors of fresh foods like romaine lettuce, dried fruits and nuts, and their nutrient values.

Use your favorite veggies, salads, and roll up your Walk-Around-Romaine-Wraps and “Bake your own Memories!”

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