Vegan Kale Salad with Citrus Dressing
Surprise, surprise, I’m posting another yet another kale salad recipe. I now have 19 kale recipes on the blog with the addition of this salad. I think I may have a serious problem/addiction here, what do you think? I mean here’s a girl who didn’t even know what kale was 4 years ago and now it’s become a total staple in my house. My weekly grocery list always consists of the staples such as eggs, milk, bread, lemons, kale, oh, and we can’t forget quinoa, because that’s become another addiction of mine, but not as bad, as I only have 6 quinoa recipes on the blog.
This salad recipe was passed onto me by my sweet girlfriend Amber. She heard through the grapevine that I was a bit of a kale addict, so she wanted to introduce me to her personal favorite salad. She came over for dinner one night, along with my friend Kimber, (who by the way made these amazing pomegrante cosmos) and made this salad up which I paired with my rosemary skillet chicken and rosemary and sea salt popovers. It was such an amazing dinner, and we we’re all part of the clean plate club that night. This is such a simple and fresh salad, and it’s so different from my other kale salads, as it doesn’t have any cheese in it. We all know how much I love cheese, but I don’t miss it in this salad at all because the nuts, fennel and oranges really give this salad some flavor. I would say that this salad falls under the “mommy” category though, as I made it up one night for my kids and they we’re not fans. They did appreciate the oranges in it though! My kids tend to like kale salads that have cheese as a key ingredient, so I tend to make this one up just for me, as it’s a great salad to bring to work.
I’ve made this salad a few times and you can really make it your own. I’ve used both oranges and tangerines as the base in the dressing, and it tastes great either way. You could even try using a grapefruit as the base, though I haven’t tried it yet, but I bet it would be great. I’ve also used sliced radishes and hazelnuts in leiu of the almonds and fennel. You can even make this salad a meal by topping it off with some sliced chicken or tofu.
vegan kale salad with citrus dressing:
- 1 bunch of lacinato/dinasour kale, de-stemmed, thinly sliced – to see how to de-stem and thinly slice kale click here
- 1-2 blood oranges, tangerines or oranges, peeled and segments sliced in half – I used both a blood orange and tangerine
- 1/4 cup toasted almonds or hazelnuts
- 1 medium fennel bulb, halved, cored, and sliced thin – You can also use radishes here as well
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
- 3 1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange or tangerine juice – you can get this from 1 orange or tangerine
- 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- Optional – sliced avocado tastes great on this salad as well
Let’s begin by toasting up the almonds. You can toast up the almonds ahead to time to save a step. Just store them in covered container till you’re ready to use them. To toast them, just put some sliced raw almonds in a dry skillet set over medium heat, and swirl them around in the pan for a few minutes until they become golden brown in color. Reserve them to the side.
Now it’s time to prep the rest of the ingredients. Wash, de-stem and thinly slice your kale. If you’re not sure how to de-stem and slice kale then you can check out my post on how to de-stem and thinly slice kale, or you can watch the beginning part of my lacinato kale salad video for instructions as well. This video has really helped my readers easily understand how to de-stem kale quickly over the sink.
Juice up your orange or tangerine into a small bowl, wash, halve, core and thinly slice up your fennel bulb (I show you how to core and slice a fennel bulb in this recipe) and peel and slice your blood orange. Get out a measuring cup or small bowl and add 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 tablespoon champagne vinegar, 3 1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice and the 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard. Whisk well to combine the dressing.
Put your sliced kale into a salad bowl, pour the dressing over the kale and massage the dressing into the kale. Make sure to massage it well so that all the kale absorbs the dressing. When I say massage your kale, I literally mean get your hands in there and massage it, like your giving a massage. When you massage kale, not only does it absorb the dressing, but it also breaks down the kale almost like when it’s cooked, and takes away any bitter flavor. Massage the kale until it’s about half of its original size.
Add to the kale, the blood oranges and or tangerines, sliced fennel and toasted almonds. Toss to combine.
This salad tastes great day two, so don’t fret if there are leftovers.
If you’re a fan of kale salads or kale in general, then check out my kale page. I have 19 items on there, so I’m sure you’ll find some other recipes to enjoy.