Monday, September 12, 2011

Kale, Apple, and Beet Salad

Autumn is on its way.  The mornings and evenings are cooler, the leaves are already turning colors, and the pumpkins are everywhere!  I love the colors of this season and the foods.  We’ll see how many dishes I’ll be making this year with pumpkin : )  

The cooler weather doesn’t mean that I’m giving up salads for a while, though.  On the contrary, there are so many great seasonal ingredients that will make a delicious salad until Spring. 

The other day, I combined kale with apples and beets for a hearty salad full of color and flavor.  I loved it so much that I’ve already made it twice and I know I’ll be making this a lot in the coming months.   

If you’ve avoided eating kale raw because of its tough texture, this can be remedied by massaging it with spices or liquids, which helps to tenderize it.  In this salad, I massage some Himalayan salt and olive oil into the kale, and the result is fantastic.

Kale, Apple, and Beet Salad

1 bunch kale, washed, destemmed, dried, and cut or ripped into small pieces
Himalayan or sea salt
olive oil
1 - 2 apples, washed, cored, and cut into small chunks
juice from ½ -1 lime
1 small red onion, chopped small
1 medium raw beet, peeled and shredded
a handful of seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, etc., optional)
maple syrup
balsamic vinegar
avocado chunks (optional)

To begin, place the kale in a large bowl.  Sprinkle it with ~1/2 - 1 tsp of salt and a drizzle of olive oil.  With your clean hands, work the oil into the kale by massaging it for a couple of minutes.  

Sprinkle the apple pieces with the lime juice and add them to the bowl, then add the onion, shredded beet, seeds if using, and pepper.   Toss the salad, then drizzle with a bit more olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and maple syrup.  Toss again until the dressing is well distributed.  Chill if desired and serve with avocado chunks.

This went perfect with a quick warm black bean salad pictured.

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