Published December 4, 2012 - Last Updated February 15, 2021
Hanukkah is all about fried foods… latkes, sufganiyot, keftes, birmuelos. While frying is a symbolic way to celebrate the holiday, it’s also a surefire way to pack on the pounds (and, in my case, can lead to a major grease-induced tummy ache). To offset all of that fried, fatty holiday goodness, I created this festive kale salad for the holiday. Kale packs a major nutritional punch. I used to detest the stuff, but after I discovered the kale massage, it quickly became my favorite leafy green. Massaging removes the natural bitterness of the kale, making it a more neutral base for your favorite salad toppings. I’m now a big fan of kale, and it never tasted better than in this wintery root vegetable salad!
To start, I roasted a few beets— a combination of red and golden, to make the salad more colorful. If you’ve never tried roasting beets, you must, it brings out their natural juicy sweetness. To learn how, click here. Next, I candied whole pecans on the stovetop using maple syrup and a touch of cayenne for heat. I whipped up a simple salad dressing– olive oil, rich balsamic vinegar, real maple syrup (not the imitation pancake stuff!), and lemon juice for brightness. Finally, I sprinkled the whole salad with crumbled feta, which offset the sweetness of the salad with a lovely salty touch. If you prefer the tang of goat cheese, that would also be lovely. And if you’d rather keep this salad dairy-free, not to worry– it will taste great without the cheese, too.
This Kale and Roasted Beet Salad with Maple Balsamic Dressing will make a colorful and flavorful addition to your holiday table. Of course, it’ll also help to mitigate some of the latke-induced calorie guilt! It’s full of vitamins and nutrients, but it doesn’t taste like health food. If you’re anti-kale, like I used to be, feel free to use fresh spinach or your favorite dark salad greens– just skip the massage/wilting step in the recipe. My favorite part is the hint of maple and balsamic flavors in every bite… so seasonal, just perfect for winter. Enjoy!
Other Great Recipe Ideas
Cookin’ Canuck: Gorgonzola Cheese Cups with Pear & Hazelnut Green Salad Recipe
La Fuji Mama: Daikon, Carrot, Persimmon, and Pomegranate Sunomono
Recipe Girl: Beet and Goat Cheese Arugula Salad
A Spicy Perspective: Fennel Salad with Roasted Beets and Shaved Asparagus
Thanks for stopping by! I am fascinated by the story behind the food – why we eat what we eat, how the foods of different cultures have evolved, and how yesterday’s food can inspire us in the kitchen today. Read more...