I entered a local online bake sale via Instagram yesterday. I baked my mom’s Toffee Bars recipe. Fingers crossed! In order to counter the amount of sugar I consumed yesterday, I needed something savory and, a bit more nutritious (hey, I had to sample the bars!). Enter, my go-to lunch when working from home: raw kale salad with random raw vegetables and toasted spicy hazelnuts (these are the DuChilly variety which don’t have that bitter taste and are quite addictive. I got them in Seattle at Pike Place Market last Fall when I was there with Mary). The key is after chopping the dino kale, massage the olive oil into the mix so you can evenly coat the kale and not use so much oil.
A Few Notes
In this instance, I used a orange pepper. Previously, I used red and yellow, just because I’ve been hooked on the sweetness of peppers lately and, for color. (Yea, I’m weird like that). I’ve also used the florets of the broccoli before, but tend to like using the stalks instead because I like their crispness. Lately, I’ve used roasted, spicy hazelnuts in this salad, but, raw ones or almonds work too. Overall, I want a crisp, light, and colorful salad to remind me of warmer days. As for the olive oil and red wine vinegar, use your best judgment. I tend to like a lighter, not heavy dressing on the salad.
Raw Kale Salad
- 1 bunch of Lactino Kale, washed, chopped
- 2 carrots, sliced
- 1 broccoli stalk, trimmed, sliced
- 4-5 radishes, chopped
- 1/2 of a orange pepper (or red or yellow for color), diced
- 1 Half of an avocado, diced
- 1/4 C. toasted hazelnuts (or almonds), chopped
- 1/3 C garbanzo beans
- 1 TB, plus a splash of extra virgin olive oil
- A few dashes of red wine vinegar
Rinse the kale and then finely chop it, add to your bowl. At this point I add a few dashes of olive oil and then massage it into the kale leaves so they are coated. Add remaining ingredients, toss with more olive oil if needed and another dash or so of red wine vinegar.
Green beans remind me of summers in Michigan and being a kid, picking them from my (maternal) grandparents’ garden. Somehow, I’d always seem to eat more than I actually brought into the house. So fresh and crisp right off the vine. I like them raw, but in the winter, roasting them seems more appropriate. I had some portobellos mushrooms on hand, so I added them to the mix. This recipe comes together very easily and is a nice side dish. The lemon zest adds a nice kick too.
- 1lb green beans, washed, trimmed
- 1 pkg of portobellos, sliced
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 1 shallot, minced
- 2 TB of Olive Oil
- Juice and zest from one lemon
- a few dashes of crushed red pepper
- 2 tsp minced rosemary and oregano
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wash and trim the beans, add sliced mushrooms and the remainder of ingredients in a bowl. Make sure the vegetables are well-coated with oil. Now, you can place them on a baking sheet, or in a baking dish. (I don’t have a baking sheet with a lip, so I used my regular ones and the oils dripped down to the bottom or my oven, which made for a nice burnt smell. Mmm.) Roast for 20-25 min, or until browned.
Wow, seems I’ve not posted in a long time. I’ve still been baking and cooking, but apparently too lazy to write up posts for the blog. I need to write more! Anyway, ever since Xmas dinner–where my sister-in-law made this salad, I’ve been making it about once a week (my friends make fun of me for my kale consumption). It’s super simple and flavorful. You should be able to find a jar of preserved lemons a most gourmet food stores.Or, and I’m not sure why this never occurred to me until now: you could make your own! I’ve been wanting to make my own pickles (cue Portlandia’s skit, so I should also get some Meyer lemons and preserve them too. Now I have a project.
- 1 package of cut kale
- 2-3 TB of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 TB minced preserved lemons
- dash of salt (optional)
Put kale in large mixing bowl (I use my glass Pyrex one) and massage oil into the leaves until they become tender. Add minced lemons and mix together. That’s it. I also tend to add a little (1 tsp.) of the liquid from the jar of lemons too.) If you’re like me, try to not consume the entire container of kale in one day. That’s not a bad thing, is it?
It’s gloomy, windy and raining (is it October? really?)…so, I decided to have something a little “spring-y” for dinner. What’s more spring-like than lemon and thyme? Well, maybe many things…but, it tastes like spring and summer to me. Besides, I’m not in full-fledged roasted root vegetable mode yet. (I did, however make some roasted butternut squash risotto last week and it was super delicious).
This recipe just came together pretty quickly in my head. If you don’t have orzo I think it’d work well with farro too. If you want it more spring-like add some raw asparagus.
- 1c orzo, cooked
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed, drained
- 1/2 can of artichoke hearts, chopped (and 1/4 cup reserved liquid from artichoke hearts)
- 3-4 handfulls of arugula, chopped
- 1/4c oil-cured Moroccan olives, chopped
- 3-4 sprigs of thyme leaves
- zest and juice of 1 medium-sized lemon
- 2-3 TB olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
Cook orzo according to directions (until al dente). No need to cool orzo. In a medium-sized bowl, add to chickpeas and remainder of ingredients. You may want to add less oil and a little more of the reserved liquid from the quartered artichoke hearts, it’s up to you. Like I said, this recipe is pretty adaptable.
Green Bean Salad
You know when it’s 90 something degrees and you’re hungry and don’t feel like cooking? Yea, that was me on July 4th. (Actually, it’s been in the 90’s and really humid all week. I don’t want to see my ConEd bill, as I’m sure it’s exorbitant.) When it’s warmer out and I don’t want to stand in front of the stove, I opt for cold main and side dishes. So, I decided to make a side salad of the raw variety. It’s super simple and tastes like summer to me.
Green Bean, Radish and Yellow Pepper Salad
- 1 pound of green beans, cleaned and trimmed, cut in half
- 1 yellow (or red) pepper, diced
- Handful of radishes, thinly sliced
- 3-4TB White Balsamic Vinegar
- 1TB olive oil (or less, it depends on one’s taste)
- juice of one lime
- 1 TB honey
- dash or two of low-sodium soy sauce (or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos)
Slice greenbeans diagonally, thinly slice radishes and yellow pepper. Toss with dressing. You may want to adjust the portions of the dressing, as I did according to my own tastes. Oh, and some crushed red pepper flakes go well in the dressing. I think the dressing is a nice combination of sweet and spicy. It was certainly easy to make and will keep in the fridge for a few days.