Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Kale Salad with Dried Cherries, Toasted Pecans, and Berry Vinaigrette Dressing

This salad came at the suggestion of a friend at work.  She too is trying to eat healthier and kale is super-fantastically healthy.  A lot of people don't love kale with its hearty, dryish texture.  Curly kale is particularly difficult to get really clean and even washing every leaf individually still leaves me with one or two crunches of sand.  I highly recommend Red Kale which is much easier to clean and a bit more delicate than the curly variety.  Remove thick sections of stem for an even more delicate salad.

Mixed with chewy, unsweetened dried cherries, crunchy toasted pecans, and a fruity vinaigrette dressing, kale actually becomes fabulous.  This salad is super quick to make.

Berry Vinaigrette Dressing

In a jar with a lid mix:
1/3 cup juice sweetened preserves such as those in the previous recipe or one from the list below*
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar, white wine vinegar, or champagne vinegar
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
sea salt & black pepper
Shake vigorously to combine.
Refrigerate remaining dressing and use within 2 weeks.

Toast shelled pecans by placing them on a baking sheet (I toast a cup or so at a time so I don't have to turn on the oven every time I want a salad.) into a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes.  They should smell toasty and any broken pieces will begin to look tanned.

Drizzle dressing over chopped kale, toss lightly then top with cherries, pecans, and a bit of red onion, if desired.

Bare Fruit dried cherries have no sugar or other sweeteners.

Fruit Spread brands without sugar or sweeteners (other than fruit):
*McCutcheon's Juice Sweetened Seedless Blackberry Preserves

St. Dalfour Preserves

365 brand Fruit Spread (not jelly)

 Bionaturae Organic Fruit Spread

 Crofter's Just Fruit Spread.


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