Most people seek out ways to be healthier, particularly at the start of the new year. Hitting the gym becomes a regular occurrence, along with selecting the right kind of foods. So I thought I would share one of my favorite ways to create a salad that is detoxifying, packed with Vitamin C, and extremely easy to make.
Kale is one of those leafy greens that you want to include in your diet on a regular basis. If you are not a fan of kale, I would encourage you to try this salad. It is marinated in fresh citrus juice which really helps soften the kale, making it more pleasant to chew and digest. Now when I say soften, I do not mean soggy. No one likes a soggy salad, am I right? You could even make this salad a day beforehand, and the next day, the salad will not be soggy!
So why is kale good for our immune system? Kale is packed with fiber, antioxidants, calcium, Vitamin K, Vitamin C, and iron. These vitamins and minerals are easily absorbed and help create a smooth functioning digestive system which is both nourishing and detoxifying to our bodies. The phytonutrients give a nice boost to our immune system as well.
Moving onto the citrus portion of this salad, winter brings us some amazing varieties! Two of my favorites are blood oranges and cara cara oranges. Not only are they packed with flavor and bursting with color, but they both have a substantial amount of Vitamin C. Cara cara oranges will provide you with 140% of your daily recommended Vitamin C intake, while blood oranges with provide you with 120%. Fiber, folate, and Vitamin A are also some of the benefits from consuming these beauties.
The dressing for this salad is so simple and guilt free. We have all heard how salad dressings can make a seemingly healthy salad not so healthy. Well, that is not a problem here. You will notice I used MCT oil for a healthy fat. As you know, those healthy fats are critical for immune health. If MCT oil isn’t your thing, feel free to sub it with the oil of your choice. Olive oil would be a good option. But to be honest with you, some fresh citrus juice may be the only drizzle you need. As I mentioned earlier, this salad can be made a day in advance as the kale will not get soggy overnight. As a matter of fact, I think it tastes better after the dressing has had a chance to marinate.
2 heads Lacinato kale
2 blood oranges
2 cara cara oranges
1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts (roasted or raw)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts (roasted or raw)
1/4 cup golden raisins (optional)
juice from one orange (either blood orange or cara cara), about 1/2 cup of juice
1 Tbs MCT oil
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp maple syrup (optional)
1) Slice kale leaves away from stems. Thinly slice the kale into strips and place in a bowl.
2) Mix the dressing ingredients and pour them over the kale. Massage the dressing into the kale and set aside.
3) Segment the oranges and toss them into the bowl of kale. Sprinkle in the nuts and raisins, toss gently. Serve immediately or chill until ready to eat. This is one of those salads that actually taste better after it sits for a while. You can actually make this a day in advance and give the kale time to really absorb the dressing. Serves 4 side salads or 2 larger salads.