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Crunchy Bean, Quinoa & Carrot Salad

At least a few times each month various people ask us if it isn’t time for us to get married. The short answer to that question has always been no, both from me and Luise. I realize that this might seem a bit provoking for some, but personally I don’t feel the need to marry to prove my love for Luise. We have loved each other deeply from the moment we met, and we have an insanely cute child together. Our proof of love is right there in a pair of Adidas, size XXS. No ring needed.

Growing up during the 80′s, almost all my friends parents got divorced, and so did mine. Somehow that has stuck to me. Marriages only end up in divorce. I don’t blame my parents. They are still friends. And at birthdays and celebrations we have dinners together as a big and genuinely happy family. So me and my sister haven’t hurt much from their divorce, except for this aversion to getting married. Luise comes from a similar background, so luckily she has more or less the same standpoint. We even talked about not getting married on our first date (I didn’t realize until later what a suicidal topic that was to bring up).

Now, I invite you to prove me wrong. We’d love to read your own stories of long and happy marriages, it’s been to little of that in my life. And maybe, just maybe, we could at least talk about reconsidering what has been decided since our first date.

One reason to get married that I can easily relate to, is the wedding. They are always so incredibly fun. I love how the air is vibrating of promises, possibilities and I do’s. We are attending a wedding in Copenhagen this weekend, and that is probably the reason why I am thinking so much about this right now. I know that the bride (and of course Luise) will look stunningly beautiful, and I really look forward to the whole thing, regardless of my personal standpoint.

Before leaving, I had to clean out the fridge. We had some beautiful seasonal vegetables that have been lying there almost too long, and I combined almost everything we had into his dish. I have always been in favor of mustard dressings, especially with more crunchy vegetables like these. First time we made this dressing was in this bean salad. Today I made it into more of a meal, by adding quinoa, roasted carrots, raisins and hazelnuts. I also added some lingonberries, which I guess are typically Scandinavian. They are quite tart, and therefore add a tangy twist to the salad. You can substitute them for red or black currants or fresh cranberries.

 

Crunchy Bean, Quinoa & Carrot Salad
Serves 4

If you time it right, this salad can be prepared while the quinoa is cooking. Then you won’t only have a quick salad, but it will also be lukewarm, which is how I like it best. If you don’t time it right it will be served cold, but that tastes pretty darn good too.

1 lb (450 g) green and yellow beans, trimmed
2 cups quinoa

8 heirloom carrots, sliced thinly
2 spring onions, thinly sliced

1/2 cup raisins
1 cup toasted hazelnuts, coarsely chopped or halved
1/2 cup lingonberries (can be replaced with red or black currants or fresh cranberries)

Dressing
4 tbsp Dijon mustard, preferably coarse grained
3 tsp honey
juice from 1 medium sized lemon
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
4 tbsp olive oil
sea salt & black pepper

Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Trim off the edges of the beans and put them in a large sauce pan with boiling water and a pinch of salt. Remove after only 1 minute, using a sieve. Put the water back on the heat. Rinse the quinoa and then add them to the water. Let boil for about 15 minutes, or until you can see the small tails on the quinoa. Meanwhile, add the carrot slices to a small bowl. Pour about 2 tbsp olive oil over them and toss until all are coated in oil. Spread evenly on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Sprinkle some salt over and bake for about 7-8 minutes (depending on how thinly sliced they are). Keep an eye on the oven so they don’t burn. Remove when the edges are starting to curl. Now it’s time to make the dressing. Whisk together mustard and honey. Add lemon juice, vinegar and oil and whisk for about 30 seconds. Add salt and pepper according to taste.

Assembling: Add beans, cooked quinoa, roasted carrots, onion and raisins in a large salad bowl. Pour over the dressing and toss, using your hands, until everything is well mixed. Top with toasted hazelnuts and lingonberries and serve immediately.

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59 Comments

  1. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 01:42 | #

    This looks yummy as well as beautiful. Where do you find fresh lingonberries?

    • Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 23:55 | #

      Hi Julie, since we live in Sweden we find fresh lingonberries in all the forests outside of Stockholm. If you can’t find lingonberries, they can be replaced with currants, cranberries or fresh huckleberries.
      /David

  2. emily
    Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 01:58 | #

    That looks like a perfect August vegetable salad. I am not married either, but when I meet the right one, I do hope I will be. I am just a sucker for romance, and I don’t think there is anything more romantic than to get married.

  3. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 02:05 | #

    I’m of the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” school of thought. If you’re not into marriage, maybe someday you could just have a big party with all your friends and family there, and you could say some nice words to each other. I’m married, and it works for me and makes me happy, but it’s understandably not for everyone!

  4. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 04:35 | #

    Beautiful salad! My boyfriend and I both come from happy, intact families, so are optimistic about forever, but even then we don’t feel the need to marry. Still, people change their minds, so who knows. Sounds like you’re warming a little to the idea!

  5. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 05:02 | #

    Let me first start by saying how much I love reading your stories and recipes, and both me and my husband have been enjoying the benefits of your recipes for over a year now! We just celebrated our 4 year wedding anniversary, and I could not be a more happily married woman. I love everything about marriage. I love the symbol of what it means for us and our family (we have 2 little boys). I was fortunate enough to have a beautiful example of marriage from my parents who just celebrated their 26 year wedding anniversary. You both have chosen to spend your lives together enjoying every moment with each other and your precious little girl. You live the life of a married couple despite the fact that you are not “legally” married, and I don’t think there is anything wrong with that. But I do think weddings are a beautiful and public display of your commitment to each other, and could not even imagine how beautiful your wedding would be. Either way, you love each other and that is all that matters. But I can assure you, when you have that love, legally marrying someone only makes life better! Marriage really can be a beautiful thing.

  6. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 05:12 | #

    This recipes is so fresh and delicious! It reminds me of a Greek bean, tomato and potato salad my mother made when I was a child. As for love & marriage “follow the beat of your own drum”.

  7. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 06:38 | #

    On the marriage situation, I’m very happily married for exactly 5 years now, our anniversary was last saturday. And we are together for 9 years, living in one place for 8 and spending our days together, since we both work from home. I believe I qualify for giving marriage advices :))

    So, here are a few things to consider before deciding not to get married:
    * the day of the wedding is the best day ever! Even Deo says so (my husband)
    * you will make your parents extremely happy (we are Europeans, if that matters)
    * you will have a honey moon, which you may turn into a tradition (we travel abroad every year as a new honey moon, it’s a tradition we created for ourselves, but we love it)
    * every woman wants to be a bride, even if Luise says she don’t want to, don’t trust her :))
    * you will have all legal rights in front of banks, the country administration, etc for just about anything

    * and finally, I believe Elsa will be the cutest flower girl ever :)

    • aninalu
      Posted 17 Sep ’12 at 17:49 | #

      I’m a woman.. I don’t want a wedding. No seriously.
      Maybe I want to get married once, but it won’t be for the ceremony, the dress, the cake, the party, the attention or all that other stuff. It’s just not for me. I find it all to be.. too much.
      People are diffrent. If you want a dress and a party and a “honeymoon”, who says you can’t have that, if you don’t want to get married? Who says it will be less meaningful, if you don’t feel like signing a contract (symbolically and legally)?

  8. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 07:12 | #

    First time, long time. Just be happy. No wedding? No problem. My now husband and I waited 10 years. All that time I kept thinking my other friends were rushing in to it. But when we finally got married, it was the best! Mexico, private villa, the ocean, street carts, mariachi, fresly pressed churros, cheaper than a boring country club wedding in the states, so worth it. Take your time and eventually (or never) make it what you want!

  9. Xander
    Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 08:12 | #

    Beautiful salad.

    I am married and have been for 13 years. I got married because I thought you ought if you loved each other. Since then I have redefined how I view marriages and relationships. I think people who want to be together should. For as long as they want. I do not think my relationship is more or less successful than any other just because it lasted for a while. When a relationship ends it doesn’t prove failure but closure. A relationship can be very successful and happy but last for less than a lifetime. I am happy I am married to my sweetheart but if our love faded or changed I would still regard the marriage as a success even if it ended before our lives did. I’d probably remarry any other great love. Not because of the wedding. I’m not that into them. But because it gives a great pre-package of legal rights that is hard to match in common contracts. I want my love to be my closest person legally if anything happens. For now. If I don’t want it I’ll get a divorce.

    If a relationship is happy or not for a lifetime is not defined by the legality but the parties. And a relationship is not defined by the ups and downs but how you communicate during them.

    • tunie
      Posted 1 Jan ’13 at 23:44 | #

      Oh this is so well said, thank you. Very nice and helpful to hear from a man who has thought about it carefully.

  10. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 09:23 | #

    Hello David and Louise. Again, it breaks me heart no to being able to reach for those Swedish berries, here in London. I met my husband 12 years ago, we’ve been together for 8 years and got married last June! Whatever the reasons for getting married I think in the end it will always have to be because you want, and not to make parents or friends happy. I wasn’t expecting a proposal, it wasn’t something we had talked about, so, it was a complete surprise. For me, I am also scared because my parents have been divorce ever since I was a child. Not his parents, his parents are still together, but when the proposal came, it just felt right, I lost all my fears and thought that I can learn with my parents’s situation . Before the proposal I always knew he was the one and wanted to live together forever, but now, somehow it makes us closer, it’s not like a heavy burden that you have to carry. Life’s the same, like it always was with him: beautiful, giving support to each other, laughing together, admiring each other. If this is not the way it is before the wedding, it’s not a wedding that will change that. Soon now I hope to have some miniature Adidas or crocs too!!

  11. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 09:36 | #

    This salad looks just perfect for this time right now. its slowly getting colder and fall is arriving…. also in austria! It also looks so vibrant :)
    Marriage nowadays has become a totally different “commitment” than a couple of decades ago and while some people dont like the concept at all anymore , some others still love the idea of bonding for a life long. A marriage is something so romantic and i believe if you have found the right person and it feels right… nothing more beautiful than a wedding!

  12. Danielle
    Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 11:23 | #

    Hi David and Louise, first of all Thank you for your great posts. I personally feel that marriage is something within, for you and the other. It has nothing to do with party, dresses and best day of your life…my goodness, what about the others day left ;) It is not only about being in love, more about trust in being naked-blanko to another person and yourself. I married 12 yrs ago, and we didn’t need the day with all the formal stuff, that was more to please the family that time.Though we kind of married the day we gave each other rings made from stone, cheaply bought on a market, years before on a holiday together. Marriage is not a tattoo nor romantic bliss to me and as Xander writes…it is contract wise sometimes better in case of death, housing etc. Apart from that we share our precious time of life on earth with the other, to care, support and to grow. You def don’t need formal paperwork for that. (And why should you say this only once on your marriage day?) So, as I read from your posts, I imagine for your family, a very natural setting were two people together with their child, tell each other what they believe in, in front of a small group of best friends, to celebrate life, love, trust, support and care with their friends and especially the 3 of you. And you can do this every year as you wish,over and over again, with your great home made dinner…. it will def influence a lot of other people to celebrate love regularly as well :)

  13. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 11:55 | #

    What a gorgeous end-of-summer salad! My husband and I have been married for nine years. At first I thought it was an unnecessary convention, but I will never forget our wedding day, surrounded by all the people we love, who came because they wanted to wish us well. I am still grateful to them for their warm show of support for our relationship… even if the true commitment that my husband and I have to each other remains very private.

  14. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 12:10 | #

    I, too, like a good grainy mustard dressing. And I love that you added lingonberries! They certainly are charmingly Scandinavian and I miss eating them.

    I totally hear where you are coming from about growing up in the 80s and having divorced parents. I am certainly grateful that divorce exists as a means of getting out of an unhappy marriage (unlike in the old Hollywood movies where women took trains to Mexico to get divorces or in India where the divorce rate is something crazy like 1 or 2% but where many couples live estranged instead as divorce is still a taboo).

    That said, I am also grateful that marriage and weddings have greatly evolved. They seem to have become more personal over the years and less stiff. They are about celebrating and having fun instead of merely following tradition.

    Besides love, marriage entails a lot of practical matters. Scandinavia is quite evolved in this matter especially in Sweden with the concept of sambo. However, in a lot of countries getting married makes a huge different financially and legally. I’m Canadian and my partner is German. We live in Germany and if we were to get married he would save a good 600 euro a month on taxes! Marriage in Germany (as well in Canada) means a nice tax-break. It also resolves visa issues for partners with different nationalities. We’ve been together for seven years. To be honest, if we shared one nationality we’d probably not even consider marriage as an option. However, it certainly makes paperwork easier which makes the idea quite tempting. And if we get married we might as well celebrate.

    But also who says that big parties celebrating love are reserved for marriage? You can always throw a big bash with lots of friends and family and lots of food to celebrate your relationship together, your life together and your family together. Why not?

  15. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 12:24 | #

    Very Nice recipe and healthy too.

  16. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 12:24 | #

    This salad looks amazing…one of my favorite hobbies is looking at pictures of food…so i happen to be in love with your blog!
    As for the marriage thing…i was the typical
    Princess on my wedding day..15 years ago…big poofy dress, big party, too many pictures to count! I was in my mid-twenties…from a divorced family…yadada. 15 years later, after going through some really rough ups and downs, more downs than ups, really; my husband threw me a huge surprise anniversary party and we renewed our vows. It was unforgettable, and much, much more meaningful than our first wedding. As our minister said after the renewal ceremony, “when you guys get married in your twenties, you have no idea what you are sAying i-do to.” and, boy was he right! I couldnt feel more blessed to have my husband in my life…so, as for you and Luise…i agree with the others, follow your heart…it will never steer you wrong!

  17. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 13:01 | #

    Beautiful salad! Perfect for summer with gorgeous beans and all the other ingredients.Mustard dressing is definitely a perfect match for beans.

  18. Sytske
    Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 13:43 | #

    First of all, love the salad! Going to try a variation of it, I am sure.
    I am a happily married woman, we’ve been married for almost 4,5 years, and have been together for almost 9,5 years.
    We got married ofcourse because we love each other. We knew very early in the relationship that we wanted to be together when we are old. But the main reason we got married was very practical. My (now) husband was diagnosed with chronic leukemia and we wanted everything to be arranged for if something happened. So by marrying, I would have no problem getting his benefits if it turned out for the worse. Not a very romantic reason. But my parents married before my dad had to go into the army, because married couples got more money than unmarried couples.. Maybe the unromantic reason runs in the family :-)
    But I have great examples, this year my parents ar married 40 (!) years, and they are still so happy together. And my husbands parents are married for 33 years. Parents of my friends are also still together. So i grew up in a happily married environment.
    But I don’t believe it’s a must. My brothers and sisters are not married, but some do have children and I do think that is what really means you love eachother.
    But being a beautifull bride, a party just for you and your love. Is also a wonderfull thing.

  19. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 14:07 | #

    I’ve been happily married almost 10 years & have two lovely kids. We were married at 21 (so young!) we’re sooo lucky in hindsight that we made the right decision! I recommend marriage (to the right person) it’s awesome.

  20. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 15:28 | #

    I love the colourful carrots and the look of this late summer salad.
    I am getting married in a few weeks time and cannot wait for that beautiful day ;)

  21. Tanja
    Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 16:36 | #

    Man skal helt sikkert ikke gifte sig for at vise omverdenen sin kærligheden til hinanden eller overfor gud – der giver jeg dig ret. Men et eller sted synes jeg, at det er lidt egoistisk ikke at gifte sig, i sær når man har et. For det første er det at gifte sig den nemmeste måde at sikre hinanden på, hvis der skulle ske noget. Dette især i forhold til rettigheder overfor jeres skønne guldklump, men også rent økonomisk (jeg studerer økonomi og går 100% ind for lige rettigheder mellem mænd og kvinder). Ved at gifte sig bliver mand og kvinde også stillet lige i forhold til blandt andet pensionsopsparing – mange kvinder kan ikke spare lige så meget op til pensionen, da de jo har en større andel af tiden på barsel. For det andet synes jeg personligt, at man er forpligtet overfor de børn man får! Måske er det fordi mine stadig er gift, men jeg ved at det kan lade sig gøre. Og ja, mine forældre har også haft hårde tide – men et handler alt sammen om man er villig til at kæmpe for det. I det øjeblik man indgår ægteskab er det jo et symbol på at man er villig til at kæmpe for forholdet. Men kan jo også sagtens kæmpe for forholdet uden at være gift. Jeg kan sagtens følge jer! I dag har man jo langt fra de traditionelle familieformer som vi før har set. Og alt andet lige kærlighed er ikke lig med ægteskab!
    Skønt med en post, som får tankerne i gang!

  22. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 16:44 | #

    This is a beautiful salad and I just happen to have green beans that need to be used! The reasons to get married are a personal thing and I’m sure you and Luise will find the path that is best for you. My husband and I met young and have been together for 12 years this fall and married for 8. We knew we never wanted to be apart, so marriage was talked about quickly. The wedding and honeymoon were very nice, but I’m most grateful for loving him now more than I did the day we were married. This isn’t because we have a marriage certificate, but because we live together side by side, learning things about each other and doing things we love together. I’m sure it is the same way for you and Luise. If you do decide to marry, I can picture you two having the most beautiful, intimate wedding celebration :) Have a wonderful time at your friend’s wedding!

  23. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 18:04 | #

    I think I’m in the same boat on the marriage thing. I just want to have a big party with amazing food, dancing into the wee hours, champagne, big smiles etc. Marriage (at least in North American culture) seems like such a HUGE thing anymore. I mean you have to meticulously plan the proposal, the ring is a monumental thing for whatever reason, everything has to be just right, there are gift registries etc etc. Love is this beautiful, close and humbling force. Being lucky enough to have it in your life is enough I think.

    Regardless, have a lovely time! Beautiful salad too. I love mustard-y vinaigrettes with beans. Always a good match.

  24. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 19:19 | #

    Lovely salad. I guess you like your green beans very crunchy, but not your carrots. I’ve never had fresh lingonberries– maybe someday if I visit Scandinavia. Living here in the US Pacific Northwest I think I would substitute huckleberries since they are in the woods right now. As far as marriage, my husband and I have been married for almost 30 years and are still in love. It meant a lot to us to stand up in front of our family and friends to say our vows. Our relationship was becoming part of the greater community and they were there to celebrate and support it, too. It’s not only about you two, you will see that when your family is grown and you want to witness and support your daughter’s journey with her life partner. As part of the pre-marriage process for the type of wedding we had, we picked three long-time couples we knew whose marriages we respected and met with them to discuss all kinds of questions and possibilities about what we saw for our own relationship. It was thoughtful and actually pretty romantic. If you do get married, I hope you enjoy the process and it’s meaningful to you. If not, I hope you take a day as your ‘anniversary’ anyway so you can have a special time together each year to celebrate your relationship.

    • Posted 1 Sep ’12 at 00:11 | #

      Hi Mary, thank you for your thoughtful words on marriage. Right now we celebrate the day that we officially became a couple, as our day. And if we don’t get married we will definitively keep that tradition.
      Regarding the carrots. You could absolutely serve them raw in the salad, to add even more crunch to it. But I think the salad becomes more nourishing and complete with roasted carrots.
      /David

  25. Posted 31 Aug ’12 at 20:30 | #

    The comments above have warmed my heart – thank you all for sharing so honestly!

    I’m a twenty-something who’s been in a cross-cultural relationship for seven years and married for three. As young marrieds we are an oddity in the Netherlands, and often are asked by curious strangers to explain our How and Why. My transition to this new country was much rockier than I anticipated, and I was glad in those darker moments that my lover and I had expressed our commitment to each other so explicitly. As someone who has lived on three continents and experienced the angst of rootlessness, I can say that I have finally found a home in my marriage and my partnership with my husband.

  26. Posted 1 Sep ’12 at 00:27 | #

    Oh gosh you guys!!!
    Thank you for sharing so many beautiful and personal stories of love and marriage. They are truly heart warming to read. Keep the love celebrations coming!

  27. Mrs
    Posted 1 Sep ’12 at 11:44 | #

    Hi, my two cents over marriage… I’m happily married since 2 years and I’m so glad we did it. I don’t love my husband more since we’re married, nor it was needed for us to publicly demonstrate our love and committment. We do it every day. But since because we love each other, we are not afraid to take the duties and committments that marriage implies. Moreover marriage gives you a legal framework about your child, your pension, your insurance and bank accounts, what happens in case of accidents (in some countries you’re not allowed to visit your partner in hospital because you’re not a relation) and so on. And this all over the world. And having the good luck to not have any family pressure (which is not everybody case), you can decide how to celebrate without feeling the pressure of pleasing your family and do what they like and not what you like: a traditional wedding, just the two of you, an exotic wedding in a tropical paradise, the possibilities are endless…
    And last but not least: ending a long relationship is always painful, divorce or not. Not being married will not make it easier emotionally and certainly it will give more work to family lawyers.

  28. Maisa
    Posted 1 Sep ’12 at 13:08 | #

    I have been following your recipes for a few months on Facebook but never had courage to try anything on my own. Yesterday I bought green beans without anything specific on my mind, came home and there was your fantastic recipe for green bean and quinoa salad. And today I had a great lunch! Thank you!!!!!

  29. Posted 1 Sep ’12 at 14:09 | #

    I can relate to you guys on so many different levels. I too come from a broken family (sadly not a happily separated one either) and decided very early on that marriage was not going to ever be for me. However after I met Si everything change and for the first time I started to see the beauty of marriage. It was never going to be the big fairytale white wedding for me, as that’s just not my style. We always knew we’d get married one day but was in no rush to do so and went on to have our two beautiful children first. It was just before moving overseas to live that we finally decided to make it official. Having been together over 8 years already we felt like we were married already, but there really is something special about making it official. We surprised all our family and friends with a simple little ceremony at our farewell party and it was the most perfect way I could ever imagine doing it. I feel like it has brought us together as a family unit more, even though after 18 months I am still undecided as to whether I will change my name or not… these things take time! If it’s not something you ever want to do, don’t. It’s something that I feel should only ever be done for you, not to please others. All the best xx

  30. Posted 1 Sep ’12 at 17:11 | #

    This looks so good! I love quinoa, but can only find the lighter variety here in Amsterdam. Is there a big difference in taste, you think? Maybe it would be worth to continue my search then:)
    I laughed when you mentioned talking about not marrying during your first date. But hey: it did work out great, right?!:)

  31. Jacqui
    Posted 1 Sep ’12 at 19:09 | #

    mmhh looks so delicious and fresh! the recipe went straight to my have-to-try list :) have a great weekend!!

    happiness-is-in-the-little-things.blogspot.com

  32. Posted 1 Sep ’12 at 22:02 | #

    I just found your blog and I can’t stop reading! All of your recipes sound amazing, and your pictures are stunning. Looking forward to much more reading:)

  33. Posted 2 Sep ’12 at 04:54 | #

    what a GORGEOUS recipe! i love all the colors and the lingenberries!

  34. Posted 2 Sep ’12 at 10:51 | #

    I wish it was more easy to get lingonberries around here! Really, the only way to buy them in the Netherlands is to go to ikea and buy the frozen ones from the foodcorner. So i think I will go for red currants or cranberries. Lovely simple recipe you’ve created.

  35. Posted 2 Sep ’12 at 12:54 | #

    So, I’m 23 and still about as far away from the possibility of marriage as the day I entered this world, so I can’t comment on the beauty of it in terms of love… but I wanted to share a few of my thoughts from several different perspectives (I’m sorry if this is really long!)
    Firstly, my parents’ marriage made me incredibly cynical early on. I found out some things which caused me to doubt its authenticity and made me very angry at my parents for not being true to each other, or to the rest of the family. It was also clear that – while they may have been once – they were no longer happy in each others company, and I hated the atmosphere that that brought to our house. However, my Mum got very sick and in her last few weeks, I saw the true depth of their love for each other. It got lost and treated badly but, in the end, it was still strong. I believe that if they hadn’t been tied together by marriage they would have separated a long time before then. Maybe that would have been more healthy at the time, but I (and my Mum) would never have seen that side of them again.
    Secondly, from a much more boring/sensible perspective, my Mum died without leaving a will and it was hard enough for her husband to go through the legal process of claiming stuff. Obviously everyone prays that they will never have to be in that situation, but I can’t imagine how much more difficult it would be without a marriage certificate.
    Finally, my grandparents’ marriage is beautiful. They’ve been married for over 60 years and they still hold hands and make hilarious sexual references. They gave me a sense of solidity and togetherness when everything else was falling apart. Maybe that can be achieved without being married… but as long as the true meaning of marriage is actually respected (which I think is where a lot of my own cynicism comes from now), there’s still a sense of definitive ‘oneness’ in being legally bound.
    Sorry that was so long! I’m definitely still working through my own thoughts on it, so this topic hit home for me. Either way though, you have a gorgeous family, and you’ll do what feels right for you – now, and 20 years down the line.

  36. Posted 2 Sep ’12 at 16:15 | #

    I am not married with no rush to do so, either.. but if you want happy examples my grandfather passed away this weekend 2 days shy of his 66th wedding anniversary. He lived a good life.

  37. Becca
    Posted 2 Sep ’12 at 16:22 | #

    I can completely relate.

    My partner and I have been together for years, already live together, own property together, etc. We’ve felt ‘married’ for a long time. We never felt the need to file our love with the courts/government. Honestly, it strikes me as odd that the government plays a role (at all) in marriage, but anyway…

    Nevertheless, after seven years together, we decided to have a ‘wedding’ ceremony with our family and friends to celebrate the joining of two families and to celebrate our love in front of all the people we both love. The ‘wedding’ wasn’t legal or filed with the government; however it was very ceremonial and celebratory. In the end, it was fun to just have had a party celebrating love!

  38. Anna
    Posted 3 Sep ’12 at 07:30 | #

    I was raised that marriage isn’t that important. I never thought I would get married. However, when I met “the one”, he made it clear to me that marriage was important to him. I just wanted to live together in a committed relationship. We had to strike a compromise- we could live together, but only with the intention of getting engaged and married. I went along with it. I didn’t think it was a big deal one way or the other, and I thought that nothing would change after the wedding.

    A few months after the wedding, I told my husband that- that it was nice that we were married and all now, but really, it didn’t change anything in our lives, so I didn’t understand why he was so insistant on getting married. He asked me, “If nothing has changed, do you think you would go back to being un-married?” My answer was an immediate and heartfelt “no.” I didn’t even have time to think about it. When I analyzed it later, I realized that something had changed- nothing I could put into words, but something about our relationship had deepened. our commitment was stronger, or something. Ten years later and I wouldn’t change it for the world.

  39. Posted 3 Sep ’12 at 21:06 | #

    Very beautiful salad. I will try this out!

  40. Posted 5 Sep ’12 at 13:25 | #

    I have read that a child born nowadays in Sweden to parents who are not married has, has a better chance to grow up with both parents than an American child whose parents are married. Also, I hear that the rights of registered partners are about equal to married couples in Sweden, so no need to worry about that in your case:-)
    My parents are celebrating their 40th anniversary this year, so I’m a little more optimistic about marriage than you are. But not as optimistic as my husband was when we met. I am Czech and he’s Dutch and we met in Oslo where we both studied and lived in a dorm next to each other. He started talking about marriage in the second week we were dating. At that time, I (the pessimist) was thinking how awkward it was going to be if we broke up in a month and would bump into each other all the time.
    Well, he was right: we’ve been married for 13 years by now. An international marriage (or partnership) faces even more challenges than the average marriage, but luckily, it worked out really well:-)

  41. Michelle Phillips
    Posted 5 Sep ’12 at 15:07 | #

    I have been reading your blog for @ a year now, I put it in my folder labeled “My fav cooking sites”. Heidi Swanson is like my guru and thats how I happened upon your website. I love to cook and inbetween being a full time hair stylist and being a full time mom to 2 really awesome little boys (7yr & 8yr) I still have a really great relationship with my husband of 12 yrs. We actually met in highschool (he’s a yr behind me) and I had dated his bestfriend (he was our best man in our wedding!). I was going away to college and he was going to be a senior. We had an awesome summer and then he took me to our playground and broke my heart saying I was going away and that I would have new experiences and so would he. It was the best thing he could have done! I found out he dated a girl in my grade reguardless for 4 yrs. and I dated around throughout college. When I came home from college (gratuated and jobless) I was on a date with a guy who was from my college (5 hrs away) and even staying with me and my parents (who have been married for 41 yrs) and I saw my husband at a local bar and it was over. The next day I told the guy I was going to marry my now husband (crazy right?) and we broke things off. My husband and I saw eachother almost everyday and we are together for 12 years now! It’s had it’s ups and downs and yes when the kids were born I really wanted to throw the bag in a few times, but my mother n law told me when we were first dating that when 2 people find eachother and are in love you are side by side running really close to eachother parrallel. When times are rough you are still parrallel with eachother just not close together. It takes work to bring it together again. I am stubborn and my husband just gets really quiet when we are arguing. It drives me batty! In the end I still get butterflies when he kisses me (corny!) but thats the truth and I want to grow old with him! We both own our own businesses and being married definitly helps with that aspect of it, is it nessessary? For us it is, it means that we all are our own little island and that marraige certificate takes care of us. It’s not for everyone. I love looking at my husband and even though we have gained a little weight or have a few more wrinkles (THAT sux!) I think wow he’s hot and mine! Good luck and keep up the wonderful blogging and eat healthy! xoxo Michelle

  42. Posted 5 Sep ’12 at 16:29 | #

    My husband is American, I am Italian. My parents are still happily married, his mum got married 4 times. Our backgrounds are very different, and we both agreed that getting married wouldn’t add anything to our love, which is strong and passionate with or without the ring. We simply had to make that choice to be able to stay together in a same country, which for now is the UK, and live our love story without ever being apart because of bureaucracy. We are happy of our choice –in your daily life as a steady couple, it doesn’t really change anything.So, yes, if you believe in each other’s love, why not? the party factor will definitely be fun!

  43. Sarah
    Posted 6 Sep ’12 at 18:56 | #

    My partner and I have been together almost 5 years, and we don’t see any need to get married at the moment. (Granted, it’s not legal in our state, but that’s not a huge concern for us personally.) However, we’re planning to have a big party to celebrate our anniversary this fall–I don’t think there’s any need to wait for a wedding to have a celebration of love that’s filled with dancing and good food!

  44. Jennifer L
    Posted 6 Sep ’12 at 20:40 | #

    One aspect of my marriage that I treasure is the simple act of taking the time to celebrate. When I take a few moments to browse the important events in my life and recollect the sights, sounds, smells from those days, I am grateful for the people that were with me during those times. Our wedding was small, filled with more love than I could have imagined, and most importantly, shared with our dearest friends and family. My Grandfather and Grandmother got up and danced the way they had danced at their own wedding (they whipped out some ballroom and swing at 86/90 years that made the rest of us look lazy). It will forever make me smile. We danced through the evening like crazy folks and it was magical. We had been together 8 years before getting married and are now approaching the 13th year this month.

    Our cake was splendid and had all the places we had traveled written on it from our birth places at the top, our growing up places and meeting places in the middle, to our world adventures together on the bottom.

    Paperwork aside, find the time/excuse to celebrate the love. Sometimes it’s the shiny moments that we like to recollect the most when we think about our lives. A wedding, or love celebration, is shiny.

    One thing I’d consider if we did it again would be to get married on the day we met. We’re always forgetting our wedding anniversary, but we always find the time to celebrate the time-we-met anniversary (likely because it had been *the* anniversary for eight long years!

    The births of our children hit upon those high notes in life too. I was 5-months-pregnant with D. when we got married and that evening, while winding down in a fancy-fancy bath tub, we saw her first-noticeable-to-us kicks ripple in the water. She clearly had some more dancing to do. :-)

  45. Posted 10 Sep ’12 at 13:21 | #

    Hey guys,
    I saw your salad, fell instantely in love made it for dinner last night. We loved it, especially the honey-mustard dressing which was amazing! I´m having the leftovers for lunch now, can´t wait :)
    Thanks for sharing!
    Best,
    Dani

  46. Posted 12 Sep ’12 at 18:12 | #

    Beautiful recipe. I am so inspired to use roasted carrots this season in a number of dishes! And the mustard dressing is on my mind too. I just did an eggplant dish with a hot-sweet mustard. yummmmm.

    My boyfriend and I have had the same conversation about marriage. We very much feel we will be with each other forever, regardless of getting hitched. We both come from traditional families, still wed parents. Perhaps that’s why we’ve been considering the leap. In the US, it seems that people are waiting longer and longer to get married. I’m sure that has something to do with half of our generation having come from divorced/remarried parents. But I also think it has to do with modern committed relationships being absolutely more about the love relationship and perhaps less about social dos and donts.

    Anyhoo. Love your blog, love hearing about your love and your little one! Your relationship is inspiring. I actually thought you were married before you wrote this post! It seems to be the way you live your life anyway. toodles.

    Renee
    http://www.theupbeet.com

  47. Julia
    Posted 16 Dec ’12 at 02:11 | #

    I’m terrible at commenting on posts but I’m going to try and get better. I just wanted to let you know that I made this recipe for my immediate family, and was requested to make it again a few days later for our extended family on Thanksgiving. I was then asked for the recipe by my Aunt so she could make it for her extended family on Christmas Eve and my cousin wanted it to pass onto a cooking savvy friend! I thought you’d like to know your recipe is spreading through my family and friends this holiday season; thanks so much for providing such a delicious, nourishing dish I feel good about cooking for others and passing on to others :) Oh and I replaced the berries with pomegranate seeds and they fit right into the recipe.

  48. Natasha
    Posted 7 Jan ’13 at 00:19 | #

    I tried this recipe tonight and it was terrific! I didn’t have the requisite berries so I roasted some fresh cranberries I had on hand along with the carrots. Everything turned out beautifully! Thank you for sharing this and best wishes to you both.

  49. Didi
    Posted 17 Jul ’13 at 13:44 | #

    Wow, is this even a food blog? Love reading this. Marriage, relationships, buying houses, making babies, hot topics in our age group! Sometimes I get so caught up in these things I feel to be life choices that I forget to live altogether. Peer pressure is devastating for choices and identities. Good for you, that you decided you don’t need marriage. Stick with it as long as you feel good about it!
    Regarding the food: a friend made this salad yesterday. It was delicious! I didn’t know she read your blog, she picked it up from one of my facebook posts (it’s contagious!). I said to her: ‘aren’t they the most beautiful couple and is Elsa not the cutest kid in the world?’ She didn’t know who Elsa was. ‘I’m only reading the blog for the recipes.’ I couldn’t believe it. Reading your personal stories, also about traveling with baby Elsa, is such an inspiration to me. A great bonus to great food! Good job guys!

    By the way: if anyone could pull of having the most perfect wedding ever, it would be you. But never mind that ;-)

  50. Savannah
    Posted 19 Jul ’13 at 19:36 | #

    I know this is an old post but i thought I’d share, for whatever its worth :) I’ve only been married for under 3 months now, but I’ll just say, it has been beautiful. Weather married or not, there is always a compromise that has to be made.. Relationships are hard sometimes, that’s just how it is being two different people. I say, when you feel right, take the plunge. It’s worth it, an adventure, and it changes the way you feel inside. I guess for me.. It just felt more real, our love for each other, to actually COMMIT for the rest of our lives, no matter what. Our love story has really come a long way, completely different ethnic backgrounds, different goals and dreams, and somehow we have managed to create a life together encouraging each others passions and growing together. It’s a beautiful thing and I look forward to calling him my husband for the rest of our lives.
    On a side note… This is the best food blog I have ever read! So inspiring to try and be healthier. Lots of different diseases run on my side of the family, so I try to be as conscious as I can about what I put in my body to help it stay strong. You’re helping save lives through this, without even realizing it.

  51. Bethany
    Posted 14 Aug ’13 at 21:56 | #

    Vi använde denna salladsdressing ikväll med lila bönor, körsbärstomater, rosmarin-rostad fänkål och lök, zucchini, färsk persilja och fetaost. yummy! Tack för inspirationen. Dressing är så läcker.

  52. Corinne from Toronto
    Posted 10 Sep ’13 at 01:50 | #

    It’s official I love your recipes! I made this recipe, second recipe from your blog two days in a row. Made the chanterelle and lentil soup yesterday and OMG, delicious. This salad is delicious and our 9-year old son gave two-thumbs up. Thank you both for doing what you do and for bringing such joy and happiness to so many of us in the recipes you share and the photography to absolutely die for.

  53. Jen
    Posted 30 Sep ’13 at 12:32 | #

    I know this is an old post, but just wanted to let you know that I made this Yesterday for my ‘potluck club’and thought it was amazing! It is even more delicious than it looks in these gorgeous pictures.
    I used pomegranate seeds instead of lingonberries since those are easier to get in The Netherlands and was surprised by how well they combined with the rest of the dish.

    Thank you so much for this recipe and for your inspirational website in general!

  54. Posted 8 Feb ’14 at 03:52 | #

    Just wanted to let you know that I made this for lunch today, and it was a huge hit with the family! I added eggplant, and now I wish that I’d made double quantity. The dressing was amazing. Thanks so much!

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