Friday, October 19, 2012

Health in a Bowl

Dear Marg,

That's what Erin called it when she gave me the recipe, health in a bowl. I was suspicious. You know how I feel about fruit in salad. Weird. Odd textures and different degrees of sweet and tart that get all jumbled up and end up arguing with each other about whether they are dinner or dessert. Oddly this never bothers me with sweet potatoes. Especially not with that recipe that calls for apples sauteed in butter and brown sugar which you'd think if there ever was to be an argument it'd be right there at the Thanksgiving table.

But Erin is a good cook so I was willing to give the salad some slack. I didn't rush right out and make it but I didn't delete the email either. Opportunity arrived in the form of an invitation to bring salad to Sara's birthday party. Sara just turned 17. Common sense told me that a raw kale salad was not the thing to bring to a teenager's birthday party but curiosity prevailed. This is a common theme in both romance novels and kitchen disasters, the triumph of curiosity over common sense.

I thought it was delicious. Elizabeth asked for the recipe for the dressing. One teenager whose parents obviously subscribe to the try some of everything school of dinners out put some on her plate. The others didn't touch it. I didn't care. More health for me.

Erin’s Kale Salad

Serves 6

1 cup raw cashews
Zest and juice from one orange
1 to 2 T honey
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup water
1 T. Dijon mustard

Put all of this in a blender and whir until perfectly creamy.  Set aside.

Salad Base
1 bunch curly kale, chopped
2 firm apples, chopped
3 stalks celery, sliced
1 cup red grapes (I skipped the grapes. One fruit too many for me.)
1/2 c pumpkin seeds
1/2 c raisins or cranberries or figs or a combination
1 orange, peeled and sliced with membranes removed

Mix all in a serving bowl.  Add dressing and toss.  You probably won't need all the dressing.

Top salad with extra seeds or grapes just to make it pretty.

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