With summer heat still relentless, I continue to seek out various ways to serve salad. I need a salad that is hearty enough for dinner, but appetizing enough for those hot humid days when all you really want to eat is ice cream.
A frozen confection appeals to my senses but my intellect tells me that this is not a suitable choice for a nutritious meal. I am bored with the usual lettuces, so I seek out Kale, that dark slightly bitter green so packed with vitamins it is a nutritionist’s dream food. I like Lacinto Kale as it is softer and more pliable and will soak up your marinade a little more but won’t get all limp like lettuce.
I add Pearl Couscous to round out my greens and to add a little color. Pearl Couscous almost looks like barley, which would also be a good choice for this salad. The addition of mushrooms gives it a little more heft and I love the sweetness of the sugar snap peas that are very lightly sautéed.
Serve this as a main course salad with some good rustic bread and a little cheese platter. Pour yourself some Pinot Grigio and let the late summer heat dissolve into a healthy enjoyable meal and save the ice cream for dessert.
Cook the pearl couscous according to directions.
Saute chopped onion until soft.
Cut the tough ribs out of the kale leaves by folding it in half and running your knife along the rib.
Roll up the chard leaves, a couple at a time and cut in a chiffonade style.
Add the mushrooms and snap peas to the onions.
Let the kale marinate in the oil, rice vinegar and honey.
Add the couscous to the warm veggies.
Combine the sauteed veggies and couscous with the kale and top with slivered almonds and serve.
Kale Salad with Mushrooms and Pearl Couscous
12 ounces Pearl Couscous
2 bunches of Lacinto Kale, stems removed, chopped fine
3 oz. oyster mushrooms
6 oz. baby portobellos, sliced
1 medium sweet onion, chopped
8 oz. sugar snap peas
5 Tbsp. olive oil
4 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
1 Tbsp. honey
5 oz. toasted slivered almonds
Cook Pearl Couscous according to directions and set aside
Saute the onion in a little olive oil until soft.
Meanwhile, cut the tough ribs out of the kale leaves by folding the leaf in half and running your knife along the rib to cut it out.
Roll up the leaves and cut in a chiffonade to get a fine cut.
Add the mushrooms and snap peas to the onion pan and sauté for a few minutes.
Let the Kale marinate in the dressing of oil, rice wine vinegar and honey.
Add the cooked couscous to the onion mushroom mixture and combine. Then add this to the kale and toss to coat with the marinade.
Assemble on 4 plates and top with slivered almonds, serve.