This is one of my favorite salads. For those who are local to the San Francisco Bay Area, this is my version of the kale salad at Palo Alto’s Calafia Cafe. Chef Charlie Ayers, originally from Brooklyn, New York, was the former Executive Chef for Google. His food style got national recognition for his ability to combine simple, fresh and often organic ingredients with an emphasis on vegetables. Kale, considered a superfood has been extremely popular in the culinary world for several years now. Packed with vitamins and minerals, low in calorie and high in fiber, what’s not to love. This is a very straightforward salad, but I could live on it. I go to Calafia often, but will also make my version when I have time. The key to making this salad well is using fresh, tender flavorful kale, and a homemade lemon vinaigrette. What you get is a refreshing, healthy and hearty salad that is delightful on its own but that also complements any main course. I will sometimes add grilled shrimp or chicken for some additional protein, but it is wonderful anyway you serve it.
Kale + Quinoa Salad
- For the Salad:
- 1 bunch kale, stems and inner veins removed, shredded
- 1 cup cooked quinoa, cooled completely
- 1/3 cup fresh feta cheese, crumbled
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- For the Dressing:
- 3 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
- 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 3/4 cup Extra-Virgin olive oil
- Step 1 In a large mixing bowl, add the kale, quinoa, feta cheese, walnuts and cranberries, gently toss to incorporate. Set aside.
- Step 2 In a second small mixing bowl add the lemon juice, vinegar, sugar, salt and black pepper. Whisk until the sugar is dissolved.
- Step 3 Slowly whisk in the olive oil. Adjust the seasoning as needed.
- Step 4 Dress the salad as desired right before serving to avoid wilting.