| Salad is not the first thing I think of when I think of winter time foods. In fact, I eat the least amount of salads in my diet, in the winter time. Winter is a time for hearty, braised dishes and stews, but Kale is seasonally a winter time green. It can be prepared all sorts of ways. It can be seasoned really well and cooked at 200 degrees in the oven for a little while and turned into chips. You can braise it, stew it, saute it, wilt it, serve it uncooked as a salad, it is a very versatile green. It is actually my favorite green. It comes in many different varieties, there is curly kale, black kale, Russian red, and dino kale. I am sure there are many more varieties and I intend to try them all!|
At work last week the theme for our Friday samples was Winter Greens. I opted to use kale, and since I am in the meat department I have to incorporate meat into my dish. I decided to do a hearty kale and quinoa salad, with a pancetta vinaigrette, gorgonzola cheese, and toasted hazelnuts. I wanted to wilt the kale as a matter of flavor preference, wilting the kale also brings out it's gorgeous bright green color.
|This salad is actually rather simple to make, it just takes a little bit of time to cook the quinoa, but you can make all the components a day or so in advanced and then all tossed together when you would like to eat them. You can also make it if you have left over quinoa from a previous dish. Also if you don't have time to make your own vinaigrette, you can pick one up and just add crispy pancetta to it. The customers thoroughly enjoyed the salad and I had the best time creating it. The cool thing is you can create it and change it any way you like. Enjoy my recipe and give me some feedback!|
Wilted Kale and Quinoa SaladFor the salad:
2C Cooked Quinoa
1 Cup Wilted Kale
1/4C Chopped Roasted Hazelnuts
1/4C Caramelized Shallots
1/2C Radicchio (not necessary, I actually replaced it with Russian Red Kale)
For the Vinaigrette:
1 Clove Minced Garlic
1 Minced Shallot
1 tsp Dijion Mustard
1/4C Crispy Pancetta
1/4C Gorgonzola (or even a nice Roquefort) Cheese
2/3C Champagne Vinegar
1 2/3C Extra Virgin Olive Oil
For the Vini:
Combine all the ingredients save for the oil, whisk together. When combined, slowly whisk in the oil.
For the salad:
Combine all ingredients together and toss with the vini. Serve room temperature.