Salads are my go-to meals throughout the week when I don’t want to prepare an entire meal for myself. I make one big batch of a salad in the beginning of the week and grab a portion whenever I need one – convenient and healthy wrapped into one. However, eating salads all the time can become mundane. I have my usual avocado, tomato, cucumber shrimp salad, but sometimes (okay maybe all the time lately) I crave something more exciting. So, today I decided to step it up a notch and break out of the ordinary. Using what I have in the fridge, I’ve put together a shredded kale and persimmon salad tossed with toasted pecans, goat cheese, dried cranberries and an amazing creamy sunflower herb vinaigrette. Don’t you just love it when you make a tasty meal out of ingredients you already have?
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, hulled
- 1 tbsp fresh basil
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1 tsp honey
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tbsp water
- salt and pepper
- 1 large bunch kale, stems removed, shredded
- 2 persimmons, peeled and sliced
- 2 oz goat cheese, crumbled
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup toasted pecans
- Blend all the ingredients for the dressing together until smooth (garlic - water). Add more water if the dressing is too thick. Season with salt and pepper.
- Massage the kale with just enough vinaigrette to coat, softening the greens. Add more dressing if needed. Add the persimmon, goat cheese, dried cranberries and pecans. Serve.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
As far as salads go, this shredded kale and persimmon salad is especially easy to prepare. There’s nothing that needs to be cooked so it’s really just a matter of tossing everything together. Although this is vegetarian, you can easily add some roasted chicken, steak, fish or any protein your heart desires to make it more filling.
The great thing about kale salads is that the kale can be dressed the day before and it won’t get soggy. It’s important to massage the dressing into the kale to flavor the greens and soften them. Drizzling dressing onto a kale salad versus massaging them makes a huge difference.
This sunflower herb vinaigrette may be my new favorite dressing. It’s bright from the lemon, peppery from the basil and nutty from the sunflower seeds. I believe I’ve found my new salad to gorge on for the next several weeks!
Looking for someone to come to your house and prepare these dishes for you? It is possible! If you are in Los Angeles and looking for a private chef, please feel free to contact me. For more information, visit Private Kitchen Los Angeles.