Up until last Saturday on a late night run to the grocery store I had no idea that baby kale leaves even existed. I mean, I use Kale all the time in juice and smoothies, soups, etc, but have never been to intrigued by the idea of using those big, tough leaves in a salad.
Then I found these little baby kale greens and knew they would come home with me. And it turns out that they were just as lovely as I knew they would be. Delicate, not tough at all. Just perfect.
I tossed them together with some winter appropriate items. Crisp, fresh Asian pears(though you could use any pear you want), dark, moody but sweet black grapes, salty and creamy crumbles of Gorgonzola cheese, and crunchy candied walnuts.
To tie it all together I tossed it in a simple honey vinaigrette. If I haven’t told you before, homemade dressing is the only way to go. I haven’t bought bottled dressing in at least two years now. I find that if I make a bit extra every time I make dressing, I always have a few delicious flavors ready to be used in the fridge. Not that that’s necessary. Homemade dressing is obnoxiously easy.
- 8 oz. Baby Kale Leaves
- 2 Asian Pears, sliced
- 1 C. Black grapes, halved
- ½ C. Walnut halves
- ⅓ C. Sugar
- ⅓ C. Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
- FOR THE DRESSING:
- ⅔ C. Canola Oil
- ½ C. Honey
- 1 T. Lemon Juice
- 3 T. Apple Cider Vinegar
- ½ t. Dry Mustard
- 1½ t. Salt
- ¼ t. White Pepper
- 1 T. Onion
- To Candy the Walnuts:
- Place the ⅓ C. sugar in a small saute pan. Heat the pan on medium/high. When the sugar begins to melt around the edges, place the walnuts on top and stir in with a rubber spatula. Continue to stir the nuts around the pan every 10 seconds or so. The sugar will begin to caramalize. Stir the nuts constantly until they are evenly coated in caramelized sugar. Do not allow to burn! Pour the nuts onto a greased cookie sheet or non-stick mat, spreading them out and allow to cool.
- For the Dressing:
- Place all ingredients in a blender and puree until emulsified. Keep refrigerated and shake or whisk to re-emulisfy before serving.
- For the Salad:
- In a large bowl, toss together the kale leaves, pear slices, grapes, gorgonzola cheese, and candied walnuts. Pour desired amount of dressing over the salad and toss well.
- Serve immediately.
I’m so excited to be able to bring you my first real giveaway today! I really want to thank all of you, I am so thankful for my readers!!
One lucky reader will will a Four Piece servingware set in their choice of color from one of my favorite shops, OUR CAVALCADE!
They have the most beautiful powder coated serveware and I have been drooling over it for months. I got lucky this Christmas and received a set as a gift and use it all the time. I swear it makes my food look prettier, just by having it near 😉 I just love the vintage style of the handles and how they are updated with the powder coating. So, so pretty.
Here they are making my whipped sweet potatoes look all lovely.
They have so many pretty colors to choose from too. I have my eye on that light blue!
To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter below!
Congratulations, Veronica! Make sure you check your email!. If I don’t hear from you by 12 pm. Monday afternoon a new winner will be chosen. *I am not being monetarily compensated for this post and all opinions are my own.