Sesame Apple Kale Salad

I haven't posted a recipe in months! I have been so busy teaching and working on exams that my cooking has become rudimentary. I've just been cooking simple things so that I can get by. I've also been cooking my tried and true recipes from my favorite Paleo cookbooks. I want to try and get back at it now that the semester is almost over.

I made a really good salad tonight and a delicious salmon recipe that I will post later. I love kale in salads for a change from my usual greens. I frequently go to the salad bar at the grocery store close to me when I am too tired to cook, and they have a kale and orange salad with a dressing that has some toasted sesame oil in it. I made my own take on the salad using green apples instead of oranges. Raw kale can be bitter on its own, but once you massage the dressing into it and pair it with some fruit, it takes on a softer flavor. I try to include kale in my diet because it is a good source of calcium,  manganese, and vitamins A, C, and K. With the addition of the nuts and seeds, which are both good sources of vitamin E, this is a nutritionally-dense salad.

While I don't typically eat a lot of fruit, I have been eating more green apples lately since I have been preparing several recipes from the 21 Day Sugar Detox cookbook, which I highly recommend. Every recipe that I have tried so far from that book has been a winner. My favorite recipe is the apple pie smoothie. My personal touch is to chop the apple finely and freeze it so that when I whip up the smoothie it's more like a milkshake. I have one almost every day as a part of breakfast or a pre-workout snack. I haven't done the detox per se, but I wanted to clean up my eating since I did indulge in a lot of dark chocolate while I was taking my qualifier exams :)

Sesame Apple Kale Salad
Printable Recipe

3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
4 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 tsp freshly grated ginger
salt and pepper, to taste
stevia, to taste (optional)
10 oz kale, any variety you prefer (I used Tuscan), tough stems removed and cut into bite-sized pieces
3 small green apples, cored and chopped
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup chopped almonds (can substitute pumpkin seeds to make this recipe nut free)

1. Whisk the vinegar, oils, ginger, salt and pepper, and stevia, if using, in bottom of your salad bowl. Add the kale and using salad tongs or your hands (hand work the best), thoroughly toss/massage the kale in the dressing. This can be done ahead of time. Cover the salad with a lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate.
2. Before serving, toss the kale with the apples, nuts, and seeds and serve.

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