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Smoky Kale & Farro Salad with Balsamic Fig Dressing

Thursday, March 8th, 2018

I’ve been trying to eat healthy lately – less snacking, more wholesome meals with lots of greens. It hasn’t been easy!

Maybe it’s because I get bored of salads. How many times can you eat lettuce with cucumbers and tomatoes, you know? I mean of course there are a million directions you can go in with salad, but who has the time? Most days I’m lucky if I get to scarf down anything while I’m running from here to there – so I come home famished and eat whatever I can find. I haven’t been making the best choices.

With my manuscript deadline just a few weeks away, I’ve been so stressed, barely sleeping and not taking care of myself. It all came to a head when I came down with the worst case of the flu the other week, that literally had me wanting to check into a hospital. I never knew the flu could be so bad, but I also knew that my body wasn’t doing the best job at getting better because I hadn’t been taking care of myself. It was a real wake up call for me to start taking my vitamins, getting more sleep, and eating better. I lost 10 lbs. over those two grueling weeks, but I gained a fresh start. It was like a clean slate for me, a chance to start over and live with intention.

I may not have done a Whole30, but I definitely felt a mind shift and I’ve been going with the flow. Working more salad into my meals, moving more and drinking more water. I feel so much better and as crazy as it is – I’m so thankful that I had such a bad case of the flu, because it put me in a better place.

Now lets talk about this salad. Salads like these make me want to eat all the greens! I love the balance of smoky, salty, chewy, tart, and sweet! And the balsamic fig dressing is such a winner, you’ll want to start stocking your fridge with it all the time.

A salad that actually makes you want to eat salad – so much yes!!!

Related Recipes:

kale, pear and kabocha squash salad with maple dijon dressing
kale persimmon salad
farro grain bowl

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Wilted Kale & Kabocha Squash Salad

Monday, January 12th, 2015

Kabocha squash seems to have gained popularity in recent years. When I was growing up, no-one ever seemed to know what it was. Maybe that’s because my mom always called it kaboochie squash! She’s not usually ahead of the trend, but she’s been making it ever since I can remember.

Kabocha is a winter squash that’s grown primarily in Japan. It’s often referred to as Japanese pumpkin. It’s not the prettiest looking thing, and it’s one of the hardest squashes to cut, but it’s definitely worth the effort. Kabocha squash is sweeter than traditional pumpkin, with a creamy texture similar to sweet potato. My mom always roasted it with brown sugar, my favorite, but it’s also wonderful braised with savory Asian flavors like soy sauce and ginger.  To make kabocha squash easier to tackle, I like to look for small ones that I can break open with one swing of my chef’s knife. The best part about it is that it’s got an edible peel, so there’s no need to start fussing with the knobby skin.

For this winter kale salad, I decided to roast the kabocha squash with maple syrup and pair it with seasonal pears and pecans. I’m not a fan of raw kale, so I wilt it down a bit to make it easier to eat. If you don’t find raw kale to be tough, you can go ahead and skip this step.

Related Recipes:

kale persimmon salad

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