Recipe: Warm kale salad with cranberries and walnuts


IMG_3193Yes, those words are possible in the same sentence! Salads may be super-healthy, but they’re hardly comfort food—until now. It’s time to meet the warm salad. These healthy dishes often feature sauteed, roasted, or steamed veggies, hearty whole grains, and plenty of complex flavor. Serve them with soup for an extra-toasty lunch or dinner. We tracked down a filling salad that will keep you healthy, full, and warm all winter long.

Have you added kale to your regular menu yet? This sturdy, leafy green is a nutritional powerhouse. It’s one vegetable you really should be adding to your vegetable list. And this warm kale salad makes that easy.

Quick to prepare, super healthy, and of course, it tastes great. My husband was happily surprised. More vegetables is a good thing!

Here’s an update to that classic. A bit different, and a whole lot healthier.

Prep Time

Cut the center ribs out of the kale leaves, and then cut the leaves crosswise into thin ribbons. Alternatively, hold a leaf in one hand and with the other, strip off the leafy part from the center rib by pulling from the end. For two people, you’ll need one large bunch of kale. It might seem like a lot, but kale shrinks up as most vegetable too because of their high water content.

This warm kale salad is rich in taste, easy and healthy. Serve it as a salad, as a side dish to roast chicken, or as a bed for roast salmon. Place it over a bed of quinoa for a vegetarian or vegan entree. It all works. For your vinegar, choose a fun, fruit-flavored variety such as dark cherry or fig Balsamic.

Serving 2 (doubles easily, use a larger pan)

Ingredients

  • 1 large bunch of organic kale
  • 1 large shallot
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
  • a handful of dried cranberries (Perhaps use apple juice sweetened)
  • a small handful of chopped walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon Balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and pepper, to season

Directions

Bring a large pot (5 litres) of water to a boil while you are trimming the kale leaves and slicing the shallot. Trim the ribs out of the center of the kale leaves, then cut the leaves crosswise into ribbons. Slice the peeled shallot crosswise into thin rings.

When water boils, add 2 teaspoons salt, then drop the kale leaves into the water and cook for 2 minutes (called blanching). Drain well through a sieve and place kale on a clean kitchen towel. Alternatively you can steam your kale for 2-3 minutes, then proceed with the recipe.

In a medium saute or fry pan heat the olive oil over medium low heat until warm. Add the shallot rings, then the garlic. Cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring until softened. Be careful not to let them burn. Add the cranberries, walnuts. and vinegar. Stir and cook for a minute, then add the cooked kale. Toss the kale ribbons to coat and warm, season up with salt and pepper, then serve.

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