This is a phenomenal salad – the colors vibrant and the flavors fresh and crisp. There is a myriad of trappings that would marry beautifully; from grilled vegetables, shrimp, chicken and hanger steak for protein, to tangerines, strawberries, grapes and feta for a touch of sweetness and creaminess. You could include marinated artichokes, black Kalamata olives and take it a step further – instead of feta, marinated mozzarella balls. And since everything looks better with a splash of color, some vibrant red cherry tomatoes or pomegranate seeds would round up perfection.
Considering that this is the simplified version, the possibilities are endless. Kale leaves are firm and they love dressing, just make sure you add it about 30-45 minutes before, so it has time to absorb well with all the ingredients, especially the to soak into the kale. Unlike most greens that get soppy with vinaigrettes, kale needs time to absorb it.
1 bag of shredded kale
½ LB of roasted butternut squash – cubed
½ cup of pomegranate seeds or dried cranberries
1 shallot – sliced
1 cup of cooked white quinoa
1 Bosch pear, peeled
slivered almonds (or pine nuts)
Juice of ½ lemon
¼ cup of EVOO
1 TBSP honey
½ TSP of Gray Poupon mustard
½ TBSP of miso paste
Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper
Roast the cubed butternut in a cookie sheet, with some olive oil, kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper for about 30-40 minutes at 350F. Cool down. Prepare the quinoa and cool. Whisk the dressing together.
In a bowl, add the washed kale, shallots, quinoa, pears, pomegranate seeds and slivered almonds. Incorporate the dressing and mix very thoroughly.