After all the chocolate and cheesecake I have been eating over the past couple of weeks, I decided a bowl of greens and seeds would do me good. I normally get my kale fix in the form of a smoothie or juice, but I have been craving a salad for days and wanted to make one that is just as satisfying as it is healthy. Because kale is my favorite food of all time, I chose this leafy green as my primary ingredient. Raw kale leaves are difficult to digest for some people, so I made sure to massage each one thoroughly with salt and lemon juice so they would be more easily digestible. I also removed the stems and cut the remaining pieces into tiny strips.
For this salad, I used lacinato kale (also known as dinosaur kale), which is dark green in color and loaded with vitamins and minerals. It carries a wide range of antioxidants and acts as an anti-inflammatory in the body. I incorporate this leaf into my daily diet and it makes a difference in every aspect of my life, including my mood, energy levels, and overall well-being. I also eat hemp seed every day and added it to this dish. These tiny seeds include GLA (gamma linolenic acid), which decreases inflammation and lowers LDL cholesterol. Hemp seed contains easily digestible proteins, essential fats, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that promote a healthy metabolism, boost the immune system, and improve organ function. In case my enthusiastic rant has not made my adoration for these two ingredients apparent, I LOVE kale and hemp seed! I used a perfectly nutritious and creamy avocado for the dressing and topped it all off with a few gorgeous figs that make an impeccable snack on their own.
Kale and Fig Salad
1 head of kale
juice of 1/2 lemon
pinch of salt
1 tbs. raw olive oil
1. Rinse kale leaves and pat off water with dish towel or paper towel.
2. Remove stem from each leaf.
3. Cut leaves into small strips and place in a bowl.
4. Add lemon juice, salt, and olive oil to leaves and massage thoroughly with hands. (This will soften kale and reduce leaves in size.) Set aside.
3 tbs. raw olive oil
2 tbs. raw apple cider vinegar
juice of 1 lemon
1/2 tbs. raw honey (or raw coconut sugar for vegans)
1. Place all ingredients in blender and mix until well combined.
2. Toss dressing with kale leaves until mix well.
6-8 dried turkish figs, stems removed
2 tbs. hemp seeds
1/2 cup raw pecans, chopped, or maple spiced pecans (optional)
pinch of black pepper
1. Chop figs into small pieces.
2. Add all ingredients to kale salad. Enjoy!