Summer Blueberry Kale Salad
Summer Blueberry Kale Salad has so much good-for-you stuff going on. We’ve got the kale, obviously; blueberries, which we know are packed with antioxidants; plus some healthy nuts and seeds, shredded carrots, and for sweetness a few dried cranberries. Everything is tossed together with an easy peasy honey balsamic vinaigrette.
Some people fear raw kale because on the stalk, it’s tough and you may not know what to do with it. But really, making a raw kale salad is no more difficult than any other kind of green salad, except for this one thing: add the dressing to the greens alone first and mix it well. When I say “mix well” I mean it, no gentle tossing. This isn’t baby spinach or field greens. Your hands are your best utensils so wash up and use them to “massage” the dressing into the greens. The idea here is that by “massaging” the kale with the dressing, the you are breaking down the kale just enough that it becomes tender and delicious. You know you’re doing the right thing when you see the kale turn from a dull, dark green to a bright, shiny green.
I like using white balsamic vinegar because it is not as intense as traditional balsamic vinegar. If the highlight of our salad is fresh blueberries, we don’t want their flavor overpowered by a traditional rich balsamic vinegar. White balsamic is perfect in a dressing like this, when you want it to be a little sweet, not too acidic and and light enough that it just hangs out in the background letting your other ingredients stand out. Use any combination of nuts and seeds that you like. Plain toasted pecans are fine, but Salty Sweet Pecans are especially tasty.
I knew this salad was a winner when we were making hamburgers for dinner the other night and my husband said, “Do we have any of that kale salad left? That would taste good tonight.” To which I think I was too dumbfounded to even respond because, well, what? MY husband? Requesting kale? After my initial incredulity passed, I asked what he liked about it and he said that it tastes “summery” and “refreshing.” He also said that he likes that it’s not a heavy salad but the fruit and nuts still make it pretty hearty. There you have it, friends, there is nothing left to say, the case is closed. Summer Blueberry Kale Salad is husband approved, so go make it!
- 12 cups of kale, washed and torn into bite-sized pieces
- 1 1/2 cups of blueberries
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, toasted
- 2 T. sunflower seeds, toasted
- 1/4 cup Salty Sweet Pecans
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 3 T. extra virgin olive oil
- 2 T. white balsamic vinegar (could substitute red wine or champagne vinegar)
- 1 T. honey
- 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
- 1. For the dressing, whisk together olive oil, vinegar, honey, and salt.
- 2. Place kale in a large bowl. Pour dressing over top of greens. Using your hands, massage dressing into the kale until the color turns from dull green to a bright, shiny green.
- 3. Add berries, carrots, nuts, seeds, and cranberries. Toss gently to combine.
- Makes approximately 9 cups. Will keep for 2-3 days.
- If your pumpkin and sunflower seeds are not already toasted, heat in a small nonstick skillet until lightly browned, stirring often.