Pear & Kale Salad
We have a confession: We judge salads by how they taste AND how they look. Sure, it’s not fair to salads that taste superb but don’t look as sparkly and appetizing as some other salads — and, yes, you can accuse us of judging a salad by its cover. But take a look at this beauty! Better yet, give it a taste. Our Pear & Kale Salad is a stunner and it’s got all the flavor and texture to back it up.
Let’s start with taste. The massaged kale is soft with no hint of bitterness, and the fresh arugula is peppery and lightly crunchy, which plays well on the palate with the softened kale. The almonds and sunflower seeds add a nutty, salty crunch, and the Manchego adds a bit of creaminess while the vinaigrette is mellow and citrusy. The pear is juicy and sweet and the pomegranate adds a pop of flavor and texture. If you’re reading this and thinking, wow, there’s A LOT going on in this salad, you’re right — and it works. Each individual element is even better together.
And we’d be remiss not to dwell on the salad’s beauty, if only for a moment. With its bright emerald greens, electric reds and snowy whites, it’s a perfect salad for deep midwinter. It adds color and cheer to the cold, dark days and it’s a particularly fitting salad for January, when New Year’s resolutions to eat right kick into high gear. This salad is brimming with nutrient-dense superfoods, without tasting like it’s trying to teach a health class.
4 to 6 servings
Preparation time: 10 minutes
For the dressing:
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (1 lemon)
1 tablespoon honey
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For the salad:
6 cups torn kale leaves
1 cup baby arugula
1 large ripe pear, thinly sliced
¼ cup toasted almonds (or nuts of your choice)
¼ cup pomegranate seeds
2 tablespoons roasted sunflower seeds
1 ounce Manchego cheese, shaved
- To make the dressing: Combine the olive oil, lemon juice, honey, salt and pepper in a jar with a screw-top lid. Shake to blend.
- To make the salad: In a large bowl, add the kale and drizzle with a tablespoon or two of dressing. Massage the kale with your hands for 1 to 2 minutes, or until it becomes tender and a deeper green in color.
- Top with arugula, sliced pears, almonds, pomegranate seeds, sunflower seeds and cheese.
- Spoon the remaining dressing over the salad just before serving.