Happy 2015, you guys! Two weeks off from work was heavenly, but it really did a number on my routine…I feel like everything—healthy eating, working out, even blogging—falls out of wack without the (sometimes mundane) structure of work, so I’m looking forward to get back into the swing of things beginning this week, and starting with this salad.
We all know the deal. New year = resolutions. Resolutions = healthy eating. Healthy eating = kale. And lots of it. And we’re under no illusion here that kale is super exciting, right? Right. But there are a few ways you can make it a bit more appetizing, and one of those is this salad. The acorn squash and barley add a bit of hearty flavor to fill you up, and the pomegranate seeds (my favvvvorrrriteee winter fruit, hands down) adds a nice tart hit. This combo will definitely keep kale boredom at bay, I promise you that.
Winter Squash Kale Salad with Pomegranate and Toasted Barley
- One bunch of kale, washed and pulled off the “ribs” of the kale, into small pieces
- One pomegranate, cleaned
- 1/2 cup barley
- 1/4 avocado
- 1 acorn squash, sliced thin, seeds removed
- Brown sugar
- Olive oil
- Apple cider vinegar
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Clean pomegranate and set aside. Slice acorn squash into rings, removing the seeds and pulp from the middle. Put on a tray, drizzling with a bit of olive oil, salt, pepper and brown sugar. Roast in the oven at 350 degrees for approximately 20 minutes, or until fragrant and softened. Set aside.
To “toast” your barley (which will give it a nutty, deeper flavor), add a teaspoon of olive oil to a deep skillet and cook the barley until slightly browned and fragrant. Add water according to package directions (mine called for 1 and 1/2 cups) then cook on simmer until the water has been absorbed and the barely has enlarged.
In a bowl, combine the cleaned kale with a few drizzles of olive oil and 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then “massage” the kale with your hands until the leaves have softened a bit and turned a deeper green.
Toss in the barley and pomegranate seeds, then top with avocado and squash. Enjoy your healthy start to 2015!