A trendy salad that’s yummy too!

Kale has been “the” ingredient to eat for years now. We know it offers great nutrition*. However, I used to find kale too bitter to enjoy.  I sort of forced myself to eat it.  That said, I’ve recently been introduced to a yummy salad and learned a few tricks to make kale far more palatable.

Goodbye Bitter Kale! Here’s the trick:

I was instructed by a friend to “massage” the kale with a little oil or dressing (or I guess even on it’s own) to help the cells break down for easier digestion. Plus, if you roll it up and then cut it finely into ribbons…the taste is far more enjoyable. Alternatively, buy the more expensive baby kale – which has a softer mouth feel and flavour.

Cabbage: On trend for 2015

Cabbage is another veggie included in this recipe. It’s been around forever and was important to the first settlers to Canada as it grows abundantly and stores well (through our long, cold winters). However, it went out of style for many years and is now making a comeback. Cabbage is incredibly versatile, it’s properties are said to aid digestion and it is relatively inexpensive.  If you are looking for more info on this humble veg, check out a comprehensive article from ProduceMadeSimple.ca (full of tips and recipes).

Local Apples in the Winter

Red Prince Apples are my last an interesting addition to this salad. They are a winter apple. Most local apples are best when they are fresh from harvest, in the fall. These apples store very well and NEED to cellar like a wine for months to allow them to mature before they are ready to eat. So, they come out for sale in January and are around until they sell out, usually early summer. Cool heh? I find them very crunchy and not overly sweet. They probably won’t be my kids favourite to eat out of hand, but they are one of my favourites to pair with other foods as their robust flavour doesn’t get lost. I’m sure the family will like the salad below.

Red Prince apples with cabbage and kale

4 cups  Red Prince Apples Slices, skin on
4 cups  Kale, washed spines removed and ribbon cut
2 cups  Shredded Napa Cabbage (or try whatever cabbage you have at home!)
1 cup  Celery cut on the diagonal, bite sized
½ cup  Sweet Red Pepper, cut into small match sticks
¼  cup  Diced Sweet Onion (or a little less)
½ cup  Walnut halves (If you live in Ontario, the own-label Longo’s ones are awesome!)

¼ cup  Walnut Oil  [light olive oil can also be used]
2 tbsp  Fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp  Dijon Mustard
½ tsp  Fresh Minced Garlic
1 tsp  Maple Syrup
Iodized Salt and pepper to taste

Wash and cut all produce and set aside. Place all dressing ingredients in a blender or go crazy with a hand whisk and blend till creamy. Place kale in a large salad bowl and drizzle dressing over kale. With clean hands, gently squeeze the dressing into the kale for about 30 seconds. This helps to break down the cell walls of the kale, which makes the kale taste better and the nutrients become more bio available. Place remaining produce in the bowl with kale and toss to coat.

Makes 4 – 6 servings

Per serving: 171 calories, 15  g fat, 1.4 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat, 255  mg sodium, 22 g carbohydrates, 4 g fibre, 12 g sugar, 4 g protein.

Recipe and photo from redprinceapple.ca

*Kale is an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin C and potassium. It is also a good source of vitamin B6, copper, folic acid, calcium, iron, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, and zinc.

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