Before leaving for our trip, Noah and I had a week where we ate a bunch of kale every single night. Massaged into a kale salad or sautéed into a meal, it was exactly what we wanted before a few weeks of not knowing how many rich curries, rice bowls, and jalebis we were going to run into.
This Fall Harvest Kale Salad with Tahini Dressing was one of our favorite dinner creations – hearty from the sweet potato bites and lentils, sweet from the apple and cranberry, with the creamy notes of goat cheese and crunch of pecans. I love that the kale can hold its own on this salad with all these incredible ingredients, complimented by the lightly salted tahini dressing.
- ½ sweet potato
- ½ cup green lentils
- 1 bunch curly kale
- ½ Fuji apple
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- ⅛ cup pecan halves
- 2 tablespoons goat cheese
- ¼ cup tahini
- 1 tablespoon white miso paste
- ½ lime
- ¼ cup water
- Prep the sweet potato for roasting by cutting it into very small cubes. Roast the cubes, tossed with a bit of olive oil and salt and pepper, for 30-40 minutes at 400 degrees (depending on the size of the cubes). Give them a toss about 20 minutes in.
- Wash the lentils and add them to a pot with 2 cups of water. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce to low heat, letting the lentils cook for 20-25 minutes until tender but not mushy. Drain them and season them with salt.
- Remove the kale leaves from the stem and wash well. Pat dry and rip or chop the kale into small bite size pieces. Place it in a bowl and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Use your hands to massage the kale - it should darken and become softer as you break apart the fibers.
- Cut the apple into pieces or slices.
- Whisk together the tahini, white miso paste, lime juice, and water for the dressing.
- Assemble the salad by tossing the kale with the tahini dressing and putting it at the bottom of the bowl. Top the kale with roasted sweet potato cubes, cooked lentils, apple, dried cranberries, pecans, and crumbled goat cheese.
By massaging the kale with the salt, it will tenderize a bit. In a pinch, the white miso paste can be substituted with a bit of soy sauce (less than a tablespoon) – it provides a nice salty depth to the dressing. You can also just switch up your favorite dressing in this recipe and I am positive it will be equally delicious!
How beautiful is this fall bowl of goodness? There is something true in diversifying the colors in your meal for a nutritious and filling lunch or dinner.