Salads are my go-to quick and easy dinner choice but they are great for lunch as well and I like to add a ton of vitamins, protein, nutrients and all around goodness to mine.
Today I’m sharing a Kale Power Salad with Spicy Chickpeas. This might be one of my favourite kale salads of them all; it packs a powerful punch with taste and overall healthy ingredients. Plus it’ll keep you full for longer!
The chickpeas are my favourite element of this salad. They are crispy and coated in cumin, coriander, paprika and cayenne pepper and of course seasoned with salt and pepper.
These little spicy pearls pop in your mouth when you bit through that thin crisp skin and into a soft center.
The kale is the backbone, so there’s no question, it has to be fresh! There are many farmers around Jamaica who are planting and selling kale but if you have a green thumb, pick up some seeds at your nearest farm store (there’s one on almost every street here in the countryside) and try your hand at growing this iron rich vege. I fell in love with kale the moment I saw it and when I first ate it, I thought, okay I’m gonna obsess about this for at least a few years.
Kale for salads needs a really good massage. Kale is not delicate like most other greens, you can rub it to loosen up its fibers and make it more palatable. I always massage my kale with some of the vinaigrette or dressing that I’m using on my salad; it might seem strange to the first time kale salad maker but do it anyway. For this salad I decided on an Asian inspired Ginger-Orange Vinaigrette.
Roasted beets add just a smidgen of sweetness. Beets are another obsession of mine and I have them raw mostly but when it’s roasted there’s a different texture and taste. How cool is it that roasting transforms an ingredient so much?!
I decided to shave some Parmesan cheese for that cheesy, salty, rich flavour which this super lean salad needs. Raw carrots and sunflower seeds are a crunchy element that adds some texture to this salad and the raw onion gives it that pure, strong flavour to stand up to all those cooked elements.
As I always say, fresh ingredients are the best to use and that’s even more so for salads! Here in Jamaica, access to super fresh foods is easy, all you have to do is step into your parish’s market or plant a few fruits and veges in your backyard. If you live in the city, chances are you could find a decent or amazing farmer’s market that’s got lots of local, fresh produce. You just gotta get out there and find it!
If you’re feeling kale like I am, check out this recipe here.
I hope you shine today!