A variation of this salad is made weekly at our house now and it can be served cold or warmed. Have family members that are one the fence with kale? This recipe may push them over onto the kale side. There are many variations of the recipe mentioned below and it can be tailored to your taste.
1 large bunch of kale (curly or winterbor kale or tuscan kale works well)- strip off stems, cut into bite-sized pieces.
2 cups of cannellini beans (or soldier, pinto or chickpeas -the key is the cooking if using dried. They should be a softer creamy texture)
Honey-Citrus Vinaigrette (there may be extra to use on other salads)
-1/2 cup of a white balsamic (I used a fruit variation), champagne vinegar or apple cider vinegar
-3/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
– 1 tablespoonful of dijon mustard
– start with 1 tablespoonful of honey and adjust
-a pinch of salt and pepper
– add a handful of dried cranberries to the vinaigrette to soften (golden raisins, dried cherries or dried blueberries can also be substituted)
Shake well and taste to adjust sweetness(add more honey) or tartness (add more vinegar)
1) If using curly kale (and you would like it more tender)- in a large bowl toss the kale with a splash of the vinaigrette and massage with your hands for a couple of minutes. Tuscan kale will soften well on its own.
2) Toss in beans and just enough vinaigrette to coat the leaves.
3) Add extra dried fruit if desired.
4) Before serving or packing up for lunch, add a generous sprinkle of pistachios.
This makes a great main meal salad alone or with chicken, fish or beef. It is also delicious chilled, room temperature or warmed.
In season fresh fruit can be substituted for dried fruit. The salad would be delicious with sliced peaches, nectarines or apples. When using fresh fruit, add just before serving as it is more delicate.
Play with the oil to vinegar ratio in the vinaigrette. Like it tarter or sweeter, increase the vinegar or honey. Want the salad more savory? Change to a red wine vinegar and add more mustard.
This is a springboard recipe to make your own.