Harvest Kale Salad with Roasted Squash
Let’s all get our Kale on. Can I get a Kale-Yeah?!
When most people hear the word Kale, they think “bitter”, “gross”, “too healthy” and many other negative connotations. Now, I am not the first one to grab kale either, so I hear you. I usually opt for spinach, arugula, or so some other type of lettuce mix.
However, when done right, kale can be super tasty and enjoyable to eat. It just takes a little massaging and a few good add-ins to make it a winner. Just see what I did with it here, if you don’t believe me.
Everyone loves a good massage, right?
That’s right, the KEY to success with kale is that it needs to be massaged. This massaging, with your hands, allows the texture to be broken down (by the acidity from the lemon juice) and the bitterness to be dulled. This is where kale becomes palatable and your new best friend (maybe.)
The massaging takes all of a minute or two, and can be quite therapeutic. Give your kale some loving and it will give you a much deserved treat. Not to mention, kale has some amazing attributes that should probably be discussed, afterall, I am a dietitian for kale-ing out loud.
Why should you Kale?
Because I said so. Isn’t that good enough? It’s #sassypproved, boom! No? Okay, here are a few reasons why you should add some kale to your diet…
- Antioxidants. That’s right, that fancy word means it is healthy for you. It helps to fight off things called free-radicals that build up from stressors in your life (like poor diet, too much exercise, a mean boss, and much more.)
- Iron (non-heme). While this is a plant source of iron, so not as bioavailable (aka your body knows how to handl it) as iron from animals, it is a good source for those looking to up their iron game. To maximize absorption, make sure when you consume kale you do so with a good source of vitamin C (oh why hello, squash), and not in tandem with your coffee or tea (wait at least 1 hour).
- Vitamin K. Vitamin what? Yeah, there is this thing called vitamin K that is imprortant for gut health, skin health, blood clotting needs, and even bone health. Many of us need more vitamin K in our lives. Please, let me introduce you to Kale. There is 1,180% of your daily need in 1 cup of kale, wowza!
- Calcium. That’s right, calcium is not only found in milk, it is also found in your dark leafy green vegetables, how neat! My friends, we are going to start a new campaign, Got Kale?!
Alright, enough of the sassy education talk, let me allow you to eat kale salad already! I’d recommend topping with some grilled meat or even fish to up the protein content.
You can toast your pepitas in a little bit of olive oil & salt in a large skillet over medium heat for 3-4 minutes for an added harvest touch! Or you can add already seasoned pumpkin seeds like these.
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