I need to preface this post by saying I’m a fan of kale.
Granted I don’t own a Kale Yeah shirt or feel the need to sing its super food praises from the mountain tops. Even so, I happen to puffy heart this sturdy green. It appeals to my taste buds and my veggie loving heart, not to mention what it does for my colon either. Yeah, kale can pack a punch.
When it comes to this leafy powerhouse, I’m a fan of making kale chips, especially when their covered in salty cheesy goodness, or guzzling it in my morning smoothies. Side note: kale is nothing like spinach; you can absolutely taste it in a drink. It’s strong and sometimes bitter taste doesn’t scare me though, which is why I also like to eat it straight up in this Roasted Sweet Potato Kale Salad.
The trick, for me anyway, is massaging the kale ahead of time with some good quality olive oil. It helps soften the blow so to speak. I also pair these lovely leaves with crispy garlic roasted sweet potatoes, tangy blue cheese and chickpeas because protein bro. It’s a musical medley in your mouth.
That being said, I do like my kale, so while the combination of flavors here is a creamy smattering of success, this salad will not magically transform kale into something it isn’t. It won’t fool kale haters into suddenly loving this gorgeous green. Case in point: the Hubby ate all the toppings and three pieces of kale before calling it quits. Twice.
I on the other hand licked my bowl clean and then followed it up by licking his bowl clean too. Needless to say, my tongue got a workout that day.
“So if you like [leafy veggies], getting caught in the rain, if you’re not into [spinach], if you have [sweet taters]. If you like making love at midnight [with kale in your right hand]
I’m the love that you’ve looked for, [eat me up] and escape.”*
- 1 large bunch of Curly Kale (enough to feed two people), washed and massaged.
- 2 1/2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
- 1 medium Sweet Potato, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces.
- 2 cloves Garlic, chopped into large pieces**
- Salt and Pepper, a sprinkle
- 3 Tbsp. Blue Cheese, crumbled
- 1/3 cup Chickpeas
- 1/2 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
- Wash and dry kale. Massage 1 Tbsp. of oil into the leaves and let sit for two hours at a minimum or up to all day. This will allow the leaves to soften somewhat.
- When you're ready to eat, preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Peel and cut your sweet potato to small 1/2 inch sized pieces. Add the diced sweet potato to a small metal baking dish. Toss with 1/2 Tbsp. Olive Oil, the 2 cloves of chopped garlic and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Bake for 35 minutes, until crispy, stirring once at the twenty minute mark. The potatoes will be browning at the edges and soft on the inside when they're done. If they are easily pierced with a fork, they're done.
- Add the roasted sweet potato and garlic, the blue cheese crumbles, and the chickpeas to the kale.
- Toss the entire salad with an additional 1 Tbsp. Olive Oil and 1/2 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar.
- *Cook time is wait time.
- **Keep the garlic at large sized pieces to prevent it from burning.
For more information on the health benefits of kale, click here.
I find people either love or hate kale, and the same goes for Jimmy Buffett. Which camp do you fall into?