So I have experimented with kale in the past and I have never really been able to get it right. So I ended up reserving it for cooked casseroles and some of our juice cocktails. But I had all but given up on making delicious salads with it. I could never seem to quiet get the leaves to be as soft as I had read they could be or as delicious as my sister had made them this past summer, so I just gave up.
Last weekend however I had a girlfriend over who had a particular set of food restrictions for the weekend (she was cleansing) so I figured that I would test it out again and see if I could get it right this time. Being successful in my attempt to make a kale salad I decided to give it another go and add some quinoa. As it turns out the secret is to be a little unforgiving with the leaves and to give them some time to absorb the beating you have just given them.
So for any of you out there that have faced the same failures in your attempts to make delicious kale salads, don’t lose hope it is possible!
Kale and Quinoa Salad:
1 cup Quinoa
1 1/2 cups Vegetable Broth
1 Bunch of Kale
1 Lemon juiced
3 tsp Olive Oil
1 Red Pepper diced
1/2 Cucumber diced
3 Green Onions diced
4 Radishes, thinly sliced
1. Rinse quinoa using a colander, try and get off as much starch out as possible. It also helps to soak it a bit so that it cooks more evenly and comes out less gritty. Once quinoa is rinse place in a small sauce pan with vegetable broth (I use organic low sodium broth because it is gluten free and less salt is great for the heart). Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to allow quinoa to simmer, stirring often to make sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot. Quinoa should take about 15 minutes, you will know it is done when all the liquid has been absorbed. Remove from stove and allow to cool completely.
2. In a non-reactive bowl (glass is great) add cleaned kale. I use a salad spinner to soak and dry off the torn up kale and it works great. Once the kale is in the bowl add juice from 1 lemon and really message the leaves. They will turn from a pale green colour to a bright green as some of the tough fibers start to break down.
3. Add pepper, cucumber, onion and radishes to the kale and mix in, being sure that all the vegetables are coated in the lemon juice. Once all the vegetables are mixed in add oil and work it in with your hands. Working in the oil with your hands gives you another chance to massage the kale leaves, further tenderizing them.
4. Once the quinoa is completely cooled add it to the salad and mix. Add salt and pepper to your liking and serve.
Know that I know the secret of making a tasty kale salad you have better believe it will become a staple. Especially with the farmer’s market just around the corner! Oh how I have missed the farmer’s market, I just can’t wait to see all the vendors again, and to have a fridge full of local, organic products!
Happy Friday everyone!
Note: I have updated the Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner pages so if you are short of some ideas for meals this weekend check them out.