I have a love hate relationship with kale. But this salad is moving me toward love. I think it is the cranberries that do it – they offset the bitterness of the kale perfectly. You can use whatever dressing you love. I always have my tahini dressing on hand. Make as much or as little as you want. These measurements are for one regulation sized bunch of lacinato kale.
serves 2 to 3
1 bunch kale
1 cup toasted walnuts
1 cup cranberries
1/2 cup cooked quinoa
Prep the ingredients. Cook the quinoa. Chop the walnuts and place in a 350 oven for 10 to 15 minutes, or until fragrant and toasty.
Chop the cranberries, grate the carrots and thinly slice the scallions.
Take the kale leaves off the stems and pile one on top of the other. Chiffonade (thinly slice) the kale.
Place all ingredients into a big bowl and toss together with your favorite dressing. Enjoy!
I have been all about kale lately which is a total about face. As a super taster, I found kale tough to take but since my juice cleanse, my palette has adjusted and I am buying bunches of kale every few days.
I cut the very bottoms of the stems off, place the kale in a jar of water and keep it in the refrigerator. If it starts looking wilted, I cut a little more off the bottoms and wait a day. The kale livens right back up.
And speaking of how to preserve food, an article appeared in The New York Times this week all about how to reduce food waste. I cut, pasted, and edited the section on produce which has some great ideas, some of which I am already doing and some of which I am going to start doing ASAP like mashing ripe avocados with a little lime juice and freezing them for an instant guacamole base.
- Give vegetables some space. A crowded vegetable crisper is soon a rotten one. Allow air to circulate. Most vegetables are best left in plastic bags that are open and punched with holes.
- Leave onions and potatoes in a cabinet or pantry, alone in the dark, away from other vegetables and each other.
- Wrap lettuce and cucumbers well in paper towels and refrigerate in plastic bags. For best results, wrap cucumbers individually.
- Rinse herbs lightly, roll them in paper towels and refrigerate in a plastic bag with the top left open. Or trim the ends off a bunch, put it in a glass of water like a bouquet, and cover with a plastic bag.
- Sauté lettuce that has begun to wilt in olive oil and season with garlic or shallot.
- Make chocolate pudding or mousse with overripe avocados. Or mash them with a little lime juice and freeze for an instant guacamole base. Or blend with spinach or basil, olive oil and herbs to make a sauce for pasta. Or add to salad dressing and purée for a thicker emulsion.
- Keep the stems from cilantro or parsley, along with celery leaves, onion peels, mushroom stems and the like in a bag or bowl in the refrigerator or freezer. When you have enough, simmer into a stock for risotto or soup.
- Toss berries and peeled brown bananas (cut into chunks) in a bag in the freezer for smoothies.
- Keep lemons in the fridge. Wrap zested lemons in plastic, and keep extra lemon halves cut side down in a bowl or on a plate to be used for salad dressings. They can also be preserved or cooked down to a quick marmalade.
- Throw woody stems, like rosemary, thyme, and savory into a roasting pan with root vegetables or when baking tofu.
- Steep mint for tea.
- Purée herbs and olive oil and freeze in plastic bags or ice cube trays. Use as the base for pesto or other herb sauces. Do the same with water. Or try these flavor bombs from Amanda Cohen of Dirt Candy.
- Resprout scallions by using the green parts, then taking the white bulbs and putting them in a jar of water. Replenish the water regularly.
- Hang sturdy herbs upside down to dry. Use as you would any store-bought dried herb.
The outcome of the cleanse? Not only can I tolerate kale, but I am craving it. I have been eating big bowls of this salad since I came off the cleanse and loving it. It’s my new fave! I douse it with my amazing creamy cashew dressing which I always have on hand. It is my “house” dressing and almost exactly like my Caesar dressing minus the nooch and mustard.
Creamy Cashew Dressing
1 cup raw cashews
1 cup filtered water
1 tablespoon chickpea or sweet white miso
1 clove of garlic
The juice of 1 lemon
Drop all ingredients into the Vitamix and blend until smooth. If you don’t have a Vitamix, soak the cashews for 4 hours to overnight.
Creamy Cashew Dressing
Chop, dice and mix the salad ingredients together. Toss with dressing. Enjoy!
All hail kale!
Kale is the “in” green. Honestly, It is tough me for me take because I am a supertaster which means I am hypersensitive to the bitterness in certain foods. Kale is the perfect example but I make it anyway. Kale works great in salads, pasta, smoothies and more. Or for a simple presentation, slowly caramelize a few cloves of garlic, add chopped kale and cook until wilted.
1. Salads. For me, kale is best when it is drenched in a great homemade dressing and the texture additions like fruit, nuts and quinoa. I have perfected all four of these salads and dressing so they all show up in the rotation regularly.
Kale Radicchio Salad with Lemon Caper Vinaigrette
Warm Kale Salad with Toasted Sunflower Seeds, Mini Heirloom Tomatoes & Creamy Roasted Garlic Dressing
Kale Salad with Quinoa, Apples & Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
Kale Salad with Creamy Avocado Tahini Dressing
2. Pasta. I love pasta and these are my two favorite ways to incorporate kale for a complete and delicious meal!
Spaghetti with Kale, Ramps & Peas in Cream Sauce
Pasta with Caramelized Shallots & Kale
3. Pesto. In this recipe, the pesto went onto the tofu but I could have just as easily mixed in with pasta and listed it above!
4. Kale Shallot Sauté. This is really the same thing as the pasta with shallots and kale but it is mixed in with mashed potatoes, a perfect example of taking ingredients and repurposing them in a totally different presentation.
5. My Morning Shake-y Shake or what most people call a smoothie. This is my daily breakfast and it’s chock full of every nutrient one needs to be and stay healthy.
6. A Big Bowl O’ Protein & Iron (Kale-Quinoa-Chickpea Soup) or my answer to the how-do-you-get-your-protein question!
Kale is the new baguette. Remember when it was all the rage to have a fresh baguette in your shopping bag? Now, it’s kale. Anyway…
I made lunch for my friend Sophie and we couldn’t get enough of this salad. Truthfully, it is ALL about the dressing!
Creamy Roasted Garlic Dressing
1 bulb of roasted garlic
1 cup raw cashews
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon nooch
The juice of half a lemon
Pinch of salt
Roast the garlic ahead of time. Let cool.
Squeeze the garlic out of the paper and drop it into the Vitamix. Add the rest of the ingredients. Let it rip until perfectly smooth.
1 bunch kale
12 mini heirloom tomatoes
1/2 cup toasted sunflower seeds
Toast the sunflower seeds in a 350 oven for 7 to 10 minutes. Watch them so they don’t burn!
Slice the tomatoes in half.
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Take the kale off the stems and chop. Drop into the pot and watch it turn bright green. Use a pair of tongs to press the kale down from the top. Take it out and let it drain in a sieve for a minute.
Place the kale into a bowl and toss with the dressing and sunflower seeds. Gently toss in the tomatoes. Serve and enjoy!