Friday, July 25, 2014

Kitchen Adventures; Kale, Quinoa, & Sweet Potato Salad

It's my birthday weekend! Since I'll be out and about eating terribly, I thought I would balance it out with a little health food up in this joint.

I learned some fantastic salad recipes at the Sunday Prep class I took about 2 weeks ago. So far, I've made two of them. I managed to remember to make this one while it was still beautiful and bright out over the weekend. That's why it's going on the internet. ;)

I love this salad (and most of the other salads we made) because it's completely customizable. Your base components are roasted kale, sweet potatoes and quinoa, but pretty much everything else is up to you.

My assistant Panda will show you...

So, you start with your roasted kale and then scoop in however much quinoa you want. Thor made it into this picture. Camera hog, baby.

Then add your sweet potatoes.

Sauteed onions and garlic.

Yes, I'm drinking my arnold palmer through a crazy straw.

Lemon juice and zesty zest.

Then you mix it all up.

And this is where it gets fun. If you're like me (and pretty much everyone else in class on Sunday) you'll want an element of sweet. So, you pick up a handful of dried cranberries and you toss 'em in there.

AND for a little extra crunch and some nuttiness, maybe you toss in a handful of sunflower seeds. Toasted almond slivers, or pine nuts? Make it interesting. Get creative.

Mix it all up, pack it up for lunch for the week, or dig in and say "F it, I'll figure something else out for lunch. I'm eating this nowsies."

Up to you.

Kale Quinoa & Sweet Potato Salad
Makes about 2 lunch servings.

  • Half a bunch of kale, chopped massaged in olive oil, salt & pepper and roasted at 350 for 15-20 minutes
  • 1 medium sweet potato, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes, tossed in olive oil and roasted at 350 for 15-20 minutes
  • 1/4 of an onion, sliced or chopped depending on how you like it and about 2 cloves of garlic, minced, sauteed together with about 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa, follow the instructions on the package. You may want to cook it in chicken or veggie broth instead of water for added flavor.
  • 1/2 a small lemon
  • Handful of dried cranberries
  • Handful of roasted sunflower seeds. 
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • (optional) Crumbled feta or goat cheese
Once your roasted and sauteed veggies are cooled, throw them in a bowl with your quinoa and toss 'em around a bit.
Zest your 1/2 lemon and then juice it straight into the bowl. Toss again. 
Add a your cranberries and sunflower seeds (or any other crunchy element of your choice) and toss again.
If you're adding cheese, add it last and lightly toss it in.
Salt & pepper to taste

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