{surprisingly} delicious kale and brussels sprouts salad

it’s been a big challenge to incorporate the now famous “super” green aka KALE into our diet. i’ve made the chips (not as easy as they make it sound-they burn  so easily), used it in stews and soups (not a bad option), and (rather reluctantly) in my smoothies. after watching the inspiring and miraculous story of Dr. Terry Wahls {who used diet to cure her MS-check it out: video} my husband asked if we could have some kale (surprise) for dinner! being quite the dutiful wife (haha), i had to come up with a tasty recipe using raw kale. in doing the research, i came across several cooked recipes using kale with brussels sprouts.  i  decided to combine the two greens in a raw salad by shredding (or thinly slicing) them as finely as possible-which is the only hard thing about this recipe, by the way. the resulting {seriously delicious and addictive} salad has become  such a hit with family and friends that i’m beginning to feel it in my right hand (mandolin is recommended for the brussels sprouts)! i now only offer to share the recipe, which follows…

ingredients for about 4 servings:

  • 1 large bunch (about 12-14 stalks) organic lacinato kale, deveined-cut as thinly (shredded) as possible
  • 12-14 brussels sprouts-cut in half, and thinly sliced (easiest using a mandolin) 
  • chopped walnuts (1/4 cup or so)
  • good quality parmesan cheese (shaved regiano is best) to taste (or substitute with a ripe chopped avocado-or add both)
Shallot vinaigrette: 
  • 1/4 of a shallot very finely minced 
  • 3 tbs extra virgin olive oil (or avocado oil)
  • sea salt & freshly ground pepper to taste 
  • juice of 1/2-1 lemon, freshly squeezed 
  • 1-2 tsp Dijon mustard
whisk together until thickened, pour dressing over salad & mix about 10-15 minutes before serving.
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black bean super (good for you) bowl

this bowl is what you eat when you want to be good to your body and enjoy your meal at the same time. it is filling, nutritious, flavorful, and pretty simple to make. there are several components to it, and you can use them (beans, quinoa, brown rice, salsa) together in this bowl as well as use them for other meals . use the leftover beans and quinoa in a soup, serve the brown rice with a stew or curry, or add the salsa to a salad. play around with this bowl and adapt it to your taste-maybe add a little cilantro, flat leaf parsley, oregano, or mango to your salsa-add less rice, more beans, or some steamed broccoli-but do try it…chances are, it will become a regular at your table.

(clean and simple) ingredients:

  • 2 cups dry black beans, soaked 
  • 1 cup brown (organic) basmati rice 
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 bunch organic lacinato kale, deveined
  • 2 ripe tomatoes
  • 1 lime
  • 2-3 green onions
  • 1/4  green chili or jalapeno pepper
  • sea salt
1. for the simple tomato salsa: 
finely chop the tomatoes, green onions, and jalapeno pepper ( remove the seeds and be careful with your hands-they are very spicy-if you don’t like your food  spicy you can use a sliver of bell pepper). put everything in a bowl, add sea salt and 1/2 to 1 freshly squeezed lime juice. let it sit for a good 15-20 minutes. 

2. cook the (preferably) soaked overnight  black beans for about 30-40 minutes (you could use canned beans). reserve the cooking liquid from your beans to make a vegetarian soup later (recipe soon)-it has so much good flavor.
3. {cooking brown rice}: rinse the basmati rice in cold water until the water runs clear, then cook with 2 cups of water and a a tsp of sea salt for about 35-40 minutes- boil the rice on medium/low heat until almost all the water is absorbed (10-15 mins) like above, then close the lid and bring temperature to low and cook for about 30 minutes.
4. cook the quinoa with 1 and 1/4 to 1/2 cup of water and sea salt for about 15 minutes, turn the heat off when most of the water is gone and cover.
5. devein your washed kale and steam them for just a few seconds (i steamed mine right over the cooking rice for 20 seconds). in each bowl, layer in some brown rice, quinoa, black beans, kale, and top it all with fresh salsa. there is no need for any oil, but if you’d like you could drizzle a little flaxseed or walnut oil over the top.

kale being steamed for just a few seconds over the rice
cooked brown basmati rice topped with cooked quinoa

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