Recently, kale has been a regular feature in my juicing and smoothie making. Its’ availability in fresh produce stores makes it a desirable purchase (of course, home grown would be the best choice for those with green fingers). This curly, green and leafy superfood has amazing benefits, such as:
- High in calcium
- High in vitamin C
- High in vitamin K
- High in vitamin A
- Has a good amount of Iron
- Anti cancer properties
- Helps to lower cholesterol levels
- Has an overall alkalizing effect on the body
- Great for detoxifying our bodies
- High in chlorophyll
- Blood purifying properties
Based on these benefits, kale can only add nutritional value by including it in our meals, other than drinking it in juices and smoothies. I’ve cooked kale too, the same way as I cook spinach and the light saute, with garlic, onions and olive oil, seasoned with salt and pepper, is amazingly good tasting.
I had some strawberry marinade left over from my Strawberry Shortcake make and used this as a salad dressing for this kale salad. It was amazingly blog worthy, refreshingly tasty and added a scrumptious spin on this kale salad. Mixed with shaved carrots and cucumbers, and tossed in the salad dressing, the sweet peppery taste of the kale is enhanced by the dressing. I topped the salad with toasted sunflower seeds and for a non-vegan protein option, with a boiled egg. It worked well for a light, yet nutritionally dense lunch salad.
Chopped raw pecans or walnuts, added to the salad instead of eggs, will also provide a fair amount of protein. The dressing could be a citrus one too for those who prefer it. The versatility of the enhancements to create the taste you desire by experimenting with flavours, is exciting! Fruit like sliced fresh apples and pears, is desirable too.
FOR THE DRESSING
1 cup fresh strawberries, sliced
juice of half a lemon OR juice and zest of 1 small lime
1-2 tsp of raw honey
Mix the honey and lemon or lime juice until they are well blended.
Pour the liquid over the strawberries and set aside at room temperature for the strawberries to macerate, while you prepare the salad.
FOR THE SALAD
1-2 cups kale, chopped and loosely packed
1 small carrot, shaved with a vegetable peeler
¼ – ½ cucumber, shaved with a vegetable peeler
Roasted pumpkin or sunflower or sesame seeds
Optional: 1 tblsp extra-virgin olive oil, 1-2 boiled eggs, chopped raw nuts
Strawberry dressing as above
Himalayan or Sea salt and freshly milled black pepper to taste.
- Mix the kale with the cucumber and carrots, pour over the liquid of the strawberry dressing and toss the salad well to combine the liquid. The olive oil, if using, will cause the dressing to adhere to the veggies.
- Top with the sliced strawberries, and nuts and seeds of choice. You may also add boiled egg slices.
- Serve immediately or chill for an hour or so, if desired.