This time of year so many of us are trying to clean our systems after the onslaught of Christmas indulgences. Too much good vino, rich indulgent foods and relaxed exercise regimes over the festive season can leave us feeling sluggish and bloated. So here is a delicious summer salad that can aid digestion and elimination of nasty toxins that have built up, whilst still seriously satisfying your taste buds and injecting our systems with some seriously rewarding nutrients to improve overall good health.
Rather than a base of lettuce or baby greens, this recipe calls for a bunch of raw kale as the base ingredient. For those that have not heard of kale before (where have you been hiding?), it has recently been labelled a ‘nutritional powerhouse’ as it is packed with so many nutrients including fibre and sulphur (for detoxification), vitamin C, A and K (great for improving your immune system, metabolism, vision and skin), folate (improving brain function), iron and omega 3 fatty acids. Also for those of you that are calorie counters (for which I am not a fan), one cup of kale contains only 33 calories. Which means you can fill up on this super nutrient dense leafy green without risking calorie overload, and the high fibre content means you will feel satisfied for longer than traditional lettuce leaves.
Add to the kale base, a good serving of pomegranate seeds and not only does the salad now burst with brilliant colour and crunchiness, we have now taken the health benefits of this salad to a whole new level. Pomegranates have been identified as the most powerful anti-oxidant of all fruits, with many studies indicating the pomegranate is one of the most powerful, nutrient dense foods for overall good health with anti-cancer and immune supporting effects and positive effects on lowering cholesterol and blood pressure.
To this already nutritious base of kale and pomegranate I like to also add a combination of seeds (sunflower or pepitas) and nuts (walnuts or pistaschio’s work well) to the salad for added crunch, protein and a hit of good fats required to fuel the body and top with some aged parmesan for a sharp flavour hit. Topping off the salad with a deliciously citrus dressing, using apple cider vinegar and extra virgin olive oil as the key ingredients, also allows us to absorb the most of the minerals from the ingredients whilst adding a lovely refreshing tanginess to the salad.
So have I won you over? Hope so….
So here you go – my Kale, Pomegranate and Walnut Salad. I hope you enjoy it as much as my family does. Give it a whirl and play around with the seed and nut combinations until you find your own flavour preference.
This salad goes well as a side dish for white fish fillets, ocean trout, poached chicken or even pork or beef fillet on the BBQ. Or just top it with some shredded chicken or tuna or sardines for an easy, super healthy lunch or light dinner. I guarantee it will fill you up and provide you with a real health boost, leaving you feeling light and clean for the rest of the day. Enjoy!
Kale, Pomegranate and Walnut Salad
- 1 bunch kale (I prefer to use Curly Kale for this recipe)
- 1 pomegranate
- ½ cup walnuts
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds
- ¼ cup shaved parmesan cheese
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup olive oil
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tbsp djorn mustard
- 1 clove of minced garlic
- Celtic salt to taste
- Strip the kale leaves from the stem and break into small pieces. Rinse and pat dry then place in a large salad bowl.
- Cut the pomegranate in half, turn upside down and tap the outer shell with a large spoon to release the seeds. Sprinkle the pomegranate seeds over kale leaves. Looks great already right?
- Sprinkle over the sunflower seeds and walnuts halves (broken into smaller pieces if you prefer).
- Combine the dressing ingredients in a small glass jar and shake well.
- Pour dressing over salad just prior to serving and then add the parmesan flakes.
Doesn’t it just make you happy looking at it. And now you know the health benefits that accompany every delicious mouthful, there is no reason for your happiness rating to hit a 10/10.