Friday, March 2, 2012

Kale Salad – Taste & Try

Christina and I are fortunate enough to work at a place that values feel-good foods.  From an array of healthy salads and soups to decadent brownies and cakes, there is definitely something for everyone or every craving.  What I also love about our café selection is that everything is made with mostly simple, fresh ingredients – just as you could make at home – except prepackaged into cute little containers (although you can do that at home too!).
My all-time favorite item is the Kale salad.  They make it with fresh green Kale, dried cranberries, slivered almonds and fresh grated parmesan = kale bliss.  I must have bought this almost every day for two weeks, when I thought – why don’t I try this at home??
First off, when you buy Kale at the store you can get a TON for $3-$4.  What I also love is that when I make mine at home, I can add as much cheese, slivered almonds and dried cranberries as I want!  I knew I was on to something when I could make a whole weeks-worth of these salads chock full of the ingredients I love for a fraction of the cost of buying them at our café.
The only other element that was missing is the dressing - which I translated as a mixture of lemon, olive oil, salt & pepper.  My only advice would be to not over-do it on the lemon so that you don't get a too-bitter taste.
I love how my version came out - although I do notice slight differences between mine and our cafe's.  The salad in our cafe appears a bit more green and "fluffy" and the dressing is slightly different.  I'm wondering if they steemed the kale a bit before makingn it into the salad.  I may ask about their dressing recipe, curious.
Christina tried this at home too and approached the dressing the same way, but left out the cheese and used apple slices instead of cranberries. For a heartier lunch, grilled chicken makes a great addition!