Diced sweet potatoes sautéed with massaged kale, garlic and balsamic topped with rich honey goat cheese. The salad with enough OOMPH to serve as a meal, and enough flavor to swoon even the biggest kale opposer.
There are so many components that make this THEE salad for me. First, it’s chopped. If I could eat all salads chopped for the rest of my life, I’d be thrilled. Second, it has garlic, my favorite cheese and a kick of spice — flavor party. Third, it is LOADED with vitamins, antioxidants and fiber, therefore I can keep my dietitian title another day.
It’s delicious served warm or cold. I know this because I ate it hot off the stove with a filet of Harissa-rubbed salmon for dinner, and then subsequently ate it again standing at my refrigerator at 9 PM. Late night cold Tupperware snacks are my life.
The key to really softening kale is to thoroughly massage the leaves. I typically massage the leaves using a little extra virgin olive oil and a dash of salt to help tenderize the leaves. A nice little rubdown transforms this rough, somewhat bitter green into a sweet, silky salad base.
Massaging this green is super simple. Start by de-steming the leaves and tearing them into bite-sized pieces. Take bunches of kale pieces in both hands, rub them together and repeat for ~5 minutes. You’ll notice a visible change; the leaves will darken, shrink in size and become softer in texture. Once they’re tenderized, they only need be sautéed for maybe 5-7 minutes before they wilt down. So worth the extra step!
To slightly switch gears, let’s talk about another use of leftovers….
The next morning I threw the leftover salad over a bed of peppery arugula, cracked a soft boiled egg over it and made a fantastic little breakfast salad. The runny yolk from the egg mixed the Sriracha served as a great alternative to an actual dressing. This salad was brimming with healthy fats and nutrient-dense goodness. Ugh. Soft boiled eggs just own my heart.
Sweet Potato Chopped Kale Salad with Honey Goat Cheese
Serves 3-4; makes roughly 4 cups prepared
- 2 small sweet potatoes, diced into ~1/2 inch sized cubes
- 4 cups fresh kale
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 ounce honey goat cheese
- 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 tsp cumin
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- salt and pepper to taste
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Season diced sweet potatoes with smoked paprika, cayenne pepper and cumin. Add to skillet and sauté for 6-7 minutes, until softened.
- In the meantime, de-stem the kale leaves and combine them with remaining tbsp of olive oil, salt and pepper in a large mixing bowl. Take bunches of kale pieces in both hands, rub them together and repeat for ~5 minutes. You’ll notice a visible change; the leaves will darken, shrink in size and become softer in texture. Place massaged kale on cutting board and roughly chop into bite-sized pieces.
- Add kale and minced garlic to skillet. Sauté for another 5-7 minutes, until kale wilts down. Add balsamic vinegar, reduce heat to low and let simmer for 2-3 minutes. Top with crumbled honey goat cheese and serve.
Nutrition Facts per Serving (~1 cup or 1/4 of the recipe)
Calories: 150; Total Fat: 5 gm; Saturated Fat: 1 gm; Cholesterol: 5 gm; Sodium: ~150 mg; Carbohydrates: 23 gm; Fiber: 3.5 gm; Sugar: 3.5 gm; Protein: 4 gm