January 28, 2013

Orange Dijon Balsamic Dressing Over Kale

He's got a thing for biting on toys with all his might, with a fierce purpose.

I've got a thing for eating strange food combinations, unintentionally so but always end up pleasing the taste buds. 

When I first discovered the basic massaged kale salad recipe I was won over. It was the commonly known and loved combination of olive oil, apple cider vinegar, sunflower seeds, raisins, and apple. The green leaves are either cut into small pieces or torn into bite-sized pieces, then massaged with a sprinkle of salt. My husband and I were instant friends of the green, and appreciated how plump the raisins turned after a day or two, while the kale wilted sweetly. Each hour it sat in the fridge the flavors mingled deeper. Each day it lived in our fridge, the anticipation of a plate of the salad beast grew. Yeah, it's that good.

After bringing this said salad time and time again to family gatherings, I felt the calling to branch out a tad with my kale messes. I stumbled upon a Waldorf salad recipe on Whole Foods' website, hubs and I again fell hard for the salt-free, no oil added concoction and it seemed to instantly replace its apple/sunflower seed/oil and vinegar drizzled friend. Family also enjoyed this new take on massaged kale goodness (except for my not-a-fan-of-celery brothers). Again, I made it so many times that change had to happen.

Then came this dressing... It was tangy, sweet, simple. The salad was adorned with red onion, bell pepper, mandarin oranges and walnuts. I was taken back by the loud flavor of a three-ingredient dressing, and the fact that kale alone with this citrus vinaigrette tasted fantastic. No real need to dice up a bell pepper, peel a few mandarins or cut up an onion. All you need is:

One orange, peeled
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup Dijon mustard

Then you blend them three items and toss your massaged kale with a few tablespoons of this drizzle-worthy goodness. Top with hemp hearts. Add veggies if you have a moment to. That, or serve atop a few warm slices of Brendan Brazier's buckwheat carrot pizza crust. Oh me, oh my. I had no idea this was going to taste this way. No idea this was going to be a winner. It so won. Taste buds: satisfied.

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