February 20, 2014

Kale Salad with Chimichurri and Hummus


Kale Salad with Chimichurri and Hummus


I'm stretched. One old house, two kids, two dogs, one husband with a demanding job and various volunteer commitments have left me flailing.

Each thing is suffering in some way - either the kids don't have enough of my focused face time  or I forget to submit the form for their entry to this, membership to that or registration for the other thing. The dogs are bouncing off the ceiling, chewing the runner on the stairs and following me around e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e looking hopefully into my eye when they can catch it hoping I'll take them for a walk or to the dog park. My husband wants me to listen to his work challenges, their progression and resolution and also please tell him where he needs to be when and could I email him directions too.

I communicated wrong dates for the school fundraiser because as I was typing the email for it I was mentally already on to the next thing. I missed our daughter's parent-teacher conference, twice! Once because I was planning rides to a 4th grade roller skating party - the other time I was probably wrist deep in biscuit dough, listening to Fresh Air and having a grand ole time.  No tiger mother here. I know people are starting to think to I'm a flake. I might be... but that's not why I'm messing up. I just have too many bits and pieces tap-tap-tapping on the inside of my brain. My untoned caboose is jumping from one track to the other without any quality control measures and I find I'm rolling along with a missing wheel or two. It's not my finest hour.

Calgon, take me away. Or should I say Julia Child?

(At this time I'd like to thank anyone who's actually read to this point and didn't skip ahead to the recipe. It's this kind of free therapy that is keeping me sane).

We've been eating loads of this salad ever since they started packaging baby kale into easy to rip open plastic tubs (which are even easier to recycle now that Mpls has gone to single sort recycling bins). I've been wanting to try Smitten Kitchen's Ethereal Hummus recipe so I'm using that as a creamy base which kale has no trouble holding up to.  It's worth the trouble. You drag your fork through the hummus, then scoop up some crunchy salad dressed in a ka-pow chimichurri dressing and it's a bright combination of creamy, crunchy, rich and fresh. If you don't like chimichurri, just use lemon and olive oil on your salad and it will be just as great, but milder.




Kale Salad with Chimichurri and Hummus

Servings - variable - I use about 1 large handful of kale and tomatoes per person, 1/4 avocado and a heaping tablespoon of onion and almonds.

Baby kale, chopped
Avocado, cubed
Red onion, thinly sliced (soaked in cold water to take out some of the sharpness)
Sliced almonds, toasted*
Cherry tomatoes, halved
Hummus (recipe below)
Chimichurri (recipe below)

1. Put 1/2 cup of hummus on plate and spread out.

2. Toss salad ingredients with a little chimichurri (tablespoon per person). You can add more at the table if desired but this is strong stuff so start small.

3. Spoon salad over hummus and serve.

* Toast almonds by placing them on a sheet pan and baking them at 350ยบ until lightly browned (5-7 minutes).

Lemon "Ethereal" Hummus 

Find recipe here - the only change I made was to add the zest and juice from 1/2 a lemon.

Chimichurri Sauce

Makes about 3/4 cup - you'll have leftovers which are great on meats, pasta, etc. Keeps for a week in the refrigerator

1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cumin
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 cup (packed) italian parsley
2 tablespoons fresh oregano
1/2 cup olive oil

1. Combine everything in a blender and process until thoroughly combined, adding a bit of water if you need to thin.
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