Love it or Hate it
Kale is one of those love it or hate it foods. I I’m definitely in the “love it” category. I’m a big fan of kale salads, especially in the hot summer months. Some other favorite ways to make it are creamed kale, kale chips, and even just stir-fried and drizzled with a tasty sauce.
Health Benefits of Kale
Kale is one of the most nutritious foods on the planet, so it’s worth adding into your diet. Taste buds can change, and after eating something several times—even if you don’t like it to begin with—you might find yourself enjoy it.
A cup of kale has almost 3 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber, which can help you feel full. The fiber found in kale can also help promote a healthy digestive tract. Kale is a good source of folate, which is important for brain development. It also contains lutein and zeaxanthin, which are essential for eye health. The leafy green is also chock-full of vitamins A, C, and K as well as iron, potassium, calcium, and zinc.
How to Love Kale
I think one of the reasons that people don’t like kale is that it can be a little tough to eat in its raw state. The key to a good kale salad is to massage it well with salt or an acid, such as lemon juice. Wash your hands, roll up your sleeves, and massage that kale!
Another reason it’s not so well loves is that it can be a little bland on its own. But I think that can be said of a lot of foods. Pairing kale with tasty accompaniments and sauces is key. In this recipe, I’ve use a delicious tahini dressing with crunchy, garlicky chickpeas. I may be a bit of a food nerd, because kale, tahini, and chickpeas are favorite combo of mine.
Versatile Tahini Kale Salad
This Tahini Kale Salad is highly versatile. You can adjust the add-ins to your liking. I enjoy it with diced tomato and avocado, but if you prefer marinated artichoke hearts and olives, go for it! It would also be tasty with roasted red peppers, baked tofu, and fresh cucumber slices.
This Tahini Kale Salad with Garlicky Chickpeas recipe makes 2 meal-sized portions or 4 side salads.
Tahini Kale Salad with Garlicky Chickpeas
For the Chickpeas
- 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas or a 14-ounce can (drained and rinsed)
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/ teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
For the Dressing
- 1/4 cup tahini
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional
For the Salad
- 1 bunch kale, destemmed and chopped into bite-size pieces
- 2 cups red cabbage, shredded (about 1/4 of a head of cabbage)
- 2 carrots, julienned
- 1 avocado, diced
- 1 medium tomato, diced
Make the Chickpeas
Preheat your oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place the chickpeas in a bowl and drizzle on the ol- ive oil. Add the garlic powder, onion powder, and salt, and mix to coat.
Bake for 20 minutes, and then carefully roll the chick- peas around on the baking sheet. Bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, keeping an eye on them so they don’t burn. Let the chickpeas cool for 5 to 10 minutes before using on your salad.
Make the Dressing
While the chickpeas are baking, whisk all of the dressing ingredients together in small bowl. If you don’t use the dressing right away, it will thicken, and you may need to add another tablespoon or two of water.
Make the Salad
Place the kale in a large bowl and add the tahini dressing. With clean hands, gently massage the dress- ing into the kale until the leaves are completely coated and have softened slightly.
Add the cabbage, carrots, avocado, and tomato. Toss to mix. Serve topped with the roasted chickpeas.
Recipe reprinted with permission from What’s for Lunch? Lunchtime Favorites from Dianne’s Vegan Kitchen. ©2016 Dianne Wenz. Download your copy of the e-book here: http://www.diannesvegankitchen.com/cookbooks/
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