Sweet and Savory Pomegranate Kale Salad
This salad is the perfect accompaniment to any winter meal. The combination of hearty kale, sweet pomegranate seeds, crisp green apple and savory vinaigrette is delicious on its own or can be made more substantial by increasing the pumpkin seeds.
How Can I Prepare Kale for Kale Salad
Do you know that the key to make a perfect kale salad is massaging the kale?
Now, you may be wondering – do I really have to massage the kale? The answer is yes! At first, it may seem strange, but massaging tenderizes the leaves and removes any bitterness, leaving them soft and slightly sweet. Follow these simple guide to learn how to prepare the kale for your salad.
Pomegranate Kale Salad Ingredients
These are the ingredients of this salad. You can find the exact quantities in the recipe card.
- Kale – In Italy, we call it “black kale”. Kale is a leafy green vegetable known for its nutritional value. It has a slightly bitter taste and a sturdy texture, making it a great base for salads. Kale is packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
- Dijon Mustard – Dijon mustard is a smooth and creamy condiment made from brown or black mustard seeds. It adds a tangy and slightly spicy flavor to dishes. In this salad, I use Dijon mustard in the dressing to provide a zesty kick.
- Lemon Juice – Lemon juice adds a bright and refreshing flavor to the salad. The acidic nature of lemon juice helps to balance the bitterness of kale and adds a tangy element to the dressing.
- Honey – Honey is a natural sweetener. It brings a touch of sweetness to the dressing, helping to balance the flavors. Its slightly floral taste complements the other ingredients in the salad.
- Chili Powder – Chili powder adds a mild heat and a smoky flavor to the salad. The chili powder will give the salad a subtle kick without being overpowering.
- Pomegranates – Pomegranates are a fruit with a vibrant red color and a unique flavor. They have a sweet and tart taste, adding a burst of juiciness to the salad. Pomegranate arils (the seeds) are rich in antioxidants and provide a delightful pop of color.
- Green Apple – A green apple refers to varieties of apples that have a bright green skin and a crisp texture. It adds a refreshing and slightly tart flavor to the salad. The apple’s crispness complements the kale’s texture, and its tanginess balances the other flavors.
- Pumpkin Seeds – Pumpkin seeds are edible seeds that come from pumpkins. They have a mild, nutty flavor and a satisfying crunch. Pumpkin seeds are a great addition to the salad, providing texture and a source of healthy fats, protein, and other nutrients.
- Extra virgin olive oil and salt.
How to Make Pomegranate Kale Salad
Prepare the kale
Start by stripping the leaves from the tough stems and chopping them into bite-sized pieces. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and a few drops of olive oil. Then, use your fingertips to rub and squeeze the kale for 2–3 minutes. The salt and oil will help soften it up. You’ll be amazed at the difference – the kale will be way more enjoyable to eat.
Place the massaged kale in a large bowl. Microwave the kale on high power for 40 seconds. Remove from microwave and let cool completely.
Remove the pomegranate seeds
You can easily remove the seeds from the pomegranate by breaking it apart under water, in a bowl. Read this article to learn an easy method for removing seeds from pomegranate.
Prepare the vinaigrette
To make the Dijon mustard dressing, whisk together Dijon mustard, lemon juice, honey, chili powder, salt, and olive oil in a bowl. Taste and adjust the salt as needed.
Assemble the salad
Add the kale to a large bowl. Add the dressing, pomegranate seeds, diced apple, and pumpkin seeds to the kale. Toss and enjoy!
NOTE – You can prep most of the ingredients ahead of time to save time on serving day and store them in the fridge. Just remember to bring them to room temperature before assemble the salad.
With just a few simple ingredients and some advance prep, you’ll be enjoying this vibrant salad in no time. The unique blend of flavors is sure to be a hit with guests!
How to Store the Pomegranate Kale Salad
Leftover kale salad that has been dressed may be securely stored in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for a period of up to 2 days.
Pomegranate Kale Salad
- 2 bunches kale washed (you should obtain about 250 g kale leaves, cut into pieces)
- 8 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Salt to taste
- 4 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1/3 teaspoon chili powder
- 2 pomegranates
- 1 organic green apple washed and dried
- 4 tablespoons pumpkin seeds
- Wash the kale leaves and remove the tough midribs by holding the leaf at the base and running your fingers up the stalk to remove it. Slice the leaves into thin strips and set aside.
- Sprinkle the kale with a pinch of salt. Rub 1 tablespoon of olive oil into your hands and massage it into the cabbage leaves for 2–3 minutes. This helps break down the leaves and coat them in oil. Place the massaged kale in a large bowl.
- Microwave the kale on high power for 40 seconds. Remove from microwave and let cool completely.
- Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, whisk together Dijon Mustard, lemon juice, honey, chili powder and a pinch of salt. Slowly drizzle in the 3 tablespoons of olive oil while whisking constantly to form an emulsified dressing. Taste and add more salt if needed.
- Remove the seeds from the pomegranate by breaking it apart underwater, in a bowl.
- Slice the apple into small pieces.
- Add the cooled kale, pomegranate seeds, apple, pumpkin seeds and tahini dressing to the large bowl. Toss gently to coat. Serve immediately while still crisp. Enjoy!