I see these recipe titles and roll my eyes and then just…write them anyway just like everyone else, right? Such a sheep.
Anyway. Winter salad. Maybe because of kale because it’s heartier? This-here salad has zero ingredients that are winter-specific, but somehow all together they feel a little cozier than a lighter salad….maybe something with no rice makes a summer salad?
I’m overthinking this.
ANYWAY. Jay and I were watching ye olde Foot Network, as we do, a few weeks ago, and Bobby Flay made something like this on a Thanksgiving special. Kind of like this, not really. And it looked delicious, and Jay was all Regina George “I wanna lose three pounds….” so I set out to make a salad with rice and call it a winter salad.
And so I did.
Then for the salad, we have chopped kale, green onions, cooked wild or black rice, toasted walnuts, and dried cherries. As a note, you can change ANY of this. Any kind of rice, nuts, dried fruit, or even vinegar would be fabulous – just use the dish as a guide!
First, whisk the dressing in the bottom of a salad bowl, then taste it: add more salt if you’d like, honey for a sweeter dressing, vinegar for more tang – however you roll. This is just my version! Then toss the kale into the dressing to let it start to wilt while you prep the rest of the ingredients. Giving the kale a little head start isn’t necessary, but if you’re serving the salad right away it’s nice to let it soften a little bit – sometimes raw kale can be a little bit tough, but the vinegar in the dressing takes care of that!
While the kale is softening, do whatever else you need to do – toast the nuts, slice the scallions, chop the cherries, unload your dishwasher, let the dogs pee, you get the gist. 20 minutes or so of just the kale marinating.
Now, this is vegan and really delicious, but there isn’t any rule at all that says you couldn’t add, say, some crumbled bacon and goat cheese. RIGHT?!?! Do that. The textures alone, though, are amazing.
- FOR THE DRESSING
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- FOR THE SALAD
- 4 cups chopped kale
- 1 cup wild rice, cooked to package directions in salted water and cooled
- 1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts
- 1/2 cup chopped dried cherries
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- In the bottom of a large salad bowl, whisk the dressing ingredients together. Taste, and adjust the seasoning to your preference. Add the kale and toss; let the kale marinate for 10 minutes or so while you prep the other ingredients.
- Add the rice, nuts, cherries, and scallions to the dressed kale. Toss, and taste: add more vinegar or salt/pepper if the salad needs it.
- Serve with your favorite meal, or as a meal in itself. Enjoy!