Sunday, June 12, 2011

Kale, Cherry and Almond Salad

I'm just gonna say it... you have to like Kale to like this salad.  Guess what, I do, and I hope you do too because it's super good for you! 

The salad has all the tasty components- crunchy, dense, tangy, salty, sweet and crunchy.  It can be done with what you have on hand, and what you like- so look around!  Any nuts you have would be great in here, plus all salty cheese and sweet dried fruit.  I also considered putting orange segments in the salad too, I know it's great with the orange juice flavoring the dressing, so I think it would be tasty.

I photographed the salad on it's own, but it was very nice for dinner with a grilled chicken breast. We've got our leftovers ready for lunch, and we mixed in the leftover chicken and the salad together. One of the best things about kale over lettuce is that it won't get all wilted, and should keep it's shape pretty well for tomorrow's lunch.

This recipe is for all my gardener friends with loads of kale coming up in their gardens, to help them figure out what to do with is all!

Serves 4

2 bunches Kale, chopped
1/3- 1/2 cup almonds, sliced and toasted
1/3-1/2 cup cherries, or currants
2 oz. feta, crumbled
1-2 green onions, minced
1 Tbsp honey (optional)
3 Tbsp olive oil
1-2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/2 orange, juiced
Salt & Fresh Pepper to taste

Wash and dry your kale.  Cut out the tough ribs from each piece of kale.  Chop the leaves into bite size portions and add to a bowl.

Squeeze on the lemon and orange juice, and toss in the balsamic vinegar and honey, if you are using. Toss well to coat.  Because kale has a bunch of texture, I'm actually trying to wilt the kale a bit with the acidic juices and vinegars before adding the lettuce... something I never recommend with a lettuce salad!

Add the rest of the ingredients you are using... nuts, fruit, cheese and green onions.  Toss well. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. This salad sat for about 30 minutes while we grilled the chicken (had a little issue with the grill tonight, like who was supposed to turn it on!) and the salad was great when we finally sat down to dinner.

Hey, if you like Vegetarian type salads, here's some more ideas:
Southwestern Edamame Salad
Quinoa, Cauliflower and Feta Salad
Couscous Black Bean Salad
Whole Wheat Asian Noodle Salad
Spicy Coleslaw....  this is my favorite salad of all!

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