March 10, 2014

Kale Salad with Pepper Parmesan Dressing


 Hey, look at me, being somewhat healthy again!  Let's discuss this super food, shall we?  Kale is rich in calcium, vitamin C, and vitamin K.  It also contains sulforaphane - a chemical that carries lots of anti-cancer properties, and kale is known to lower cholesterol and decrease your body's absorption of fat!  Sounds great, huh?  Unfortunately, I'm going to be straight with you.  Kale tastes like construction paper.  You have to really doctor up this bad boy.  Fortunately, here's a flavorful and bright dressing that will [sorta-kinda] make you forget you're eating your children's craft paper!  The combination of the Parmesan dressing and the lemon zest really makes this salad shine, and when you add the tart cranberries, it all comes together and pops!

What You'll Need:

For the salad
1/2 large sweet potato or 1 whole small, peeled and diced
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 bunch kale
2 lemons, zested
1/4 cup craisins
3 tbsp. pecans or pine nuts

For the dressing
2 cups low-fat buttermilk
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp. coarse ground black pepper
1/2 tbsp. dried parsley
1/2 tbsp. granulated onion
1/2 tbsp. granulated garlic
2 tbsp. green onion, thinly sliced

1.  Prep your sweet potato:  Toss your diced sweet potato in olive oil, salt, and pepper.  Roast in a 400-degree oven for 25 minutes, or until the potato is tender.  Set aside.

2.  Prep the kale and fixings: Remove the ribs from the kale and finely chop the leaves.  Kale can be a very tough green, therefore, the finer the kale, the easier it is to chew.  Soak the leaves in hot water for 5 minutes, then transfer to a bowl of cold water.  (Not everyone does this, but I tried it both ways, and I like the extra tenderness soaking brings to the greens.  Drain in a colander.  In a mixing bowl, toss the kale, lemon zest, craisins, pine nuts, and sweet potatoes.  Season with salt and pepper, if desired.

3.  To make the dressing, whisk all ingredients together in a large bowl until incorporated.  (This recipe makes more dressing than you will need for the salad, but transfer the rest to a sealed container and refrigerate to use for future salads!)  The tough kale leaves can withstand heavy dressing better than regular lettuce can, so dress your salad with a healthy portion.  Transfer to bowls, sprinkle with a little extra lemon zest and enjoy!



 Pepper Parmesan Dressing:
 

2 comments:

  1. This looks delish! Thanks for the recipe! I am trying to be healthier this year so salads like this are perfect!

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    Replies
    1. Best Reviews,

      Let me know when you try it and how your healthy kick is going! I hope it works out for you - both the recipe and the new lifestyle ;-) Thanks for reading!

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