99% of the year, I am not a salad person at all. But on the rare occasion that the sun does deign to shine here in the UK, I can’t bring myself to go anywhere near the oven, and all I want is something cold and refreshing. The sunshine has just about been hanging on the past few days (I think that’s probably all we’re getting now until next spring…), so I thought it was time to enjoy my annual salad. This time I went for a superfood kale salad, full of yummy bits!
I’m not generally a great fan of lettuce – it can often be a bit watery and nothingy, if that makes any sense. Kale is a much tastier alternative. It’s really good for you (reeeeally high in vitamins A and C!), and it’s got more of a bite to it than plain old lettuce – much more satisfying.
Sticking with the ‘superfood’ theme, I also added broccoli, pistachios, and cannellini beans. Although the term ‘superfood’ doesn’t really mean anything specific in a scientific sense, it’s usually used to refer to foods that are just seriously healthy, and all of these ingredients have been described as superfoods at one time or another for their healthy properties. You can swap in a different kind of nut or different kind of bean if you prefer – as long as you get that lovely combination of chewy kale, crunchy nuts and soft beans, you’re golden.
Don’t forget the creamy basil dressing too! It’s nice and simple, and easy to make, but it adds a real punch to this superfood kale salad. It’s creamy, it’s herby, it’s lemony, and it helps to bring all these tasty superfoods together into a cohesive salad. Serve your kale salad as a meal in its own right or on the side of a protein of your choice, and you’ve got yourself a tasty and healthy dinner!
- 1/2 head broccoli, separated into florets
- 100 g roughly chopped curly kale (~4 cups)
- 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
- 100 g cooked cannellini beans (~1/2 cup, or just under 1/2 a tin)
- 40 g shelled pistachio nuts (~ 1/4 cup)
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 small clove garlic, peeled
- Small bunch fresh basil
- 1 tbsp Greek yogurt (or vegan yogurt)
- 1/4 tsp onion granules
- Black pepper
Start by cooking the broccoli florets in a steamer until al dente. If you don't have a steamer, boil the broccoli for a few minutes instead. When the broccoli is just tender, rinse it in cold water and set aside to cool completely.
Meanwhile, put the chopped kale in a large bowl, and add about a teaspoon of olive oil. Massage the kale with your fingertips for 30 seconds or so to help soften it up.
Add the remaining salad ingredients to the bowl, including the cooled broccoli, and mix to combine.
To make the creamy herb dressing, add a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil to a mini food processor, along with the lemon juice, garlic clove, and fresh basil. Blitz well until no large pieces of basil or garlic remain. Add the Greek yogurt, onion granules, and a good pinch of salt and pepper, and blitz again to combine.
Serve the salad with the creamy dressing.
Note: Nutritional information is approximate, and will depend on exactly what ingredients you choose. Information above is for half the recipe.