No-Fail Kale Salad

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Does anyone worry that bookstores might go extinct? Or at least become a rarity?

We have three bookstores in town, and one of them closed. I worry for the other two. It’s sad.

I went to Borders – the large, two-story bookstore that closed its doors on Church Street – and bought up some cookbooks on sale. They might actually help me with my cooking of meals.

I’d much rather think about what to make for dessert than what to make for dinner. It’s such a bore cooking for one. I’d rather make cookies. Sometimes I just eat cereal and make cookies. Other times, I buy massive amounts of kale.

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In fact, this is the second time I’ve bought kale in the past few weeks. Last time it died in my fridge. I’m never sure how to cook with it? I went for a run after work and needed something quick and easy to make.

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This recipe was fairly simple. Create a garlic/lemon juice/olive oil dressing, add the kale, and let marinate in the fridge for about an hour. I’m already feeling very healthy and optimistic about this recipe.

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An hour later – and fresh from a post-run shower – I checked out the kale. Merlin, my new kitty, also likes to check out the contents of the fridge. It’s sort of hilarious. Twins we are!

merlin

Yep, I got a little kitten.

I had been looking for an orange, long-haired male kitten {a la The Dude} or a dog. However, It seems everyone wanted an orange, long-haired male kitten in Vermont. There was more of a demand than a supply on craigslist. Argh!

Then I read this post about a little gray kitten who was abandoned by his mother. A couple at their summer lake home found him under their barn – scrawny and weak. They started to nurse him back to health, but they were leaving for their permanent home in Georgia soon.

My heart went out to the little guy – abandoned by his mother! – and I took him home. My sister says he has eyes like the moon, combined with the fact that the only non-neon, camouflage, sparkly, or pink pet collar at the pet store, had stars on it. He looks very magical, so I’ve christened him Merlin.

I have yet to hear him meow. I’m wondering if he knows how?

merlin II

Isn’t he cute? It’s soooo funny when he sees himself in the mirror and goes bananas.

Okay, back to the salad. I made some croutons out of maple oat walnut bread.

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And created a more substantial meal by adding some spinach and baked-Panko crusted chicken.

Delish! And easy. And quick. And fast. I might make more things from this book.

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No-Fail Kale Salad

Adapted from 100 Recipes Every Woman Should Know

Serves one

Ingredients

Salad Ingredients

  • Juice of one lemon
  • 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper
  • 3 cups fresh kale, stems removed and torn into small pieces
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmigiano-Regiano cheese
  • 1 cup fresh baby spinach, prewashed

Chicken Ingredients

  • chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
  • barbecue sauce {I used Sweet Baby Ray’s}
  • Panko bread crumbs
  • pinch of salt, pepper, and garlic powder

Crouton Ingredients

  • 1 slice bread, the more rustic and/or day-old the better
  • drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil
  • pinch of salt and pepper

Directions

  1. In a medium-size bowl, add the lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, honey, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Whisk. Add kale and cheese, and massage into dressing. Refrigerate for one hour.
  2. Chicken: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. I usually cook up a few chicken breasts for leftovers. In a shallow bowl, combine Panko bread crumbs, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. {Enough to coat as many pieces as you are baking.} Coat chicken with barbecue sauce. I do this in a Ziploc baggie, and if I have time, leave it to marinate for an hour or two. Roll chicken in Panko bread crumbs. Place in baking dish and bake for about 35-30 minutes or until center is no longer pink.
  3. Croutons: Dice bread into small cubes. Toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toast in the oven until golden brown.
  4. To assemble: Toss spinach with the marinated kale. Place on a plate. Top with chicken and croutons. Feel very healthy!
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About Sarah

Always thinking about my next meal.
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3 Responses to No-Fail Kale Salad

  1. What an adorable kitten! I read a story about a cat who didn’t purr for the first 6 years of his life. Then another cat was introduced into the household and learned to purr. In order to hear a meow, you may need another cat :)

  2. Sarah says:

    He’s so adorable. He’s playful, yet chill. And super friendly.

    And, that’s what I’m wondering about meowing. I don’t think he was around his mother long enough…..

  3. Pingback: 25 Favorites from 2011. « DAILY NIBBLES

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