Kale Salad with Quinoa

When I was in LA, I had a lot of kale salad. And I mean a lot. Like, 5 times in a week. Because it was so yummy! And the best one I had was from this great lunch place, Veggie Grill. What I especially liked about their salad was that it was sprinkled with quinoa. Once more folks: protein! And it just tastes so good nestled up with kale.

When I got home, I still kept craving Kale salad. Up in Woodstock, visiting my great aunt, I saw my chance, for her neighbor's garden had fresh kale growing. I eagerly picked it and made up a little recipe borrowed from this and that.
Unfortunately (as you can see), there wasn't a lot of kale, and man, does it shrink when cooked! So it was a lot of quinoa. Delicious all the same.

Kale Salad with Quinoa
serves 2. 25 mins

1/2 cup quinoa
1 small bunch Kale leaves
1 apple
1/4 of sprouts (alfalfa, sunflower, whatever)
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/8 crushed walnuts
2 oz goat cheese or feta cheese

2 tbsp olive oil
juice from 1/2 lemon
1 tbsp mustard
salt and pepper to taste

Put the quinoa in a small saucepan with 3/4 cups of water; cover and bring to a boil. Then, simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork and set aside.

Meanwhile, rinse the kale and do not dry off. Put in a small saucepan on medium-low heat and cover to sweat it down. You may find it beneficial to add a little water to the pan to make sure it steams, and doesn't burn. Cook kale for 3-4 mins, or until it turns bright green and a third of the size it came in as. Remove from heat and run under cold water to cool it. When cool enough to handle, chop it roughly and put in a medium bowl.

Cube the apple and add to the kale. Add the sprouts, the cranberries, and the nuts. Crumble the cheese in. Lastly, add the cooled quinoa until you have reached the desired ratio of kale to quinoa, and serve with vinaigrette.

For the vinaigrette, whisk all ingredients until emulsified and drizzle over the salad.

note: if you have extra quinoa (and I did, myself), save it. In the morning, you can make breakfast quinoa! Recipe for that to come soon, promise.

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