Winter Vegetable Salad with Orange Vinaigrette
Our wedding is still three months away but it feels like it’s coming up next week. Time is flying by and there are still so many little details to consider. I never could have imagined how consuming all of it is. Or how expensive.
I’m working extra shifts on the weekends to help offset the cost of everything, so life is busier now than ever. Which is fine. It’s great, in fact. Just a tad overwhelming, you know?
Work like an ant. One day at a time. That’s what I have to remind myself.
It’s been difficult to focus on creating new recipes but I’ve been obsessing over oranges lately. If someone starts peeling one, no matter how far away I am, the bright citrusy scent hits me smack in the face. There’s something so clean and refreshing about that smell!
Or maybe it’s just my immune system begging me to slow down and feed it some vitamin C?
Regardless, I’ve wanted nothing more than to take the plentiful bundles of kale at the market and coat them with a fresh orange vinaigrette.
I know a salad seems unseasonal to those of you who live in the land of ice and snow but it’s been in the 50’s and 60’s here so I’m mixing up the soup rotation with a few salads here and there.
To keep things interesting, I thought adding roasted beets and carrots with a light honey and ginger glaze would be nice.
Then, because I associate beets with goat cheese…not sure why, I finished the whole thing off with goat cheese and pecan crumbles.
The dressing was everything I hoped for. Full of citrus flavor but not enough to overpower the subtle sweetness of the glazed beets and carrots.
Plus, it’s colorful and nutritious enough to keep your energy up for whatever life brings. Whether it be shoveling snow or working two jobs to pay for a wedding…
2 bunches of kale, removed from stem and chopped
3 beets, peeled and diced
3 large carrots, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
salt & pepper
2 tablespoons honey
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
4 ounces goat cheese
1/2 cup pecans or walnuts, finely chopped
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (I used Trader Joes white balsamic)
1 garlic clove, minced
juice and zest of one large orange or two small
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Prepare beets and carrots by washing, peeling and dicing them.
- Arrange the peeled and diced carrots and beets on a baking pan lined with parchment paper or a glass baking dish then coat with two tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Roast in oven for 35 to 40 minutes, stirring half way through so that they cook evenly.
- While the veggies are roasting, wash the kale and remove the stem before chopping it in to bite size pieces. Dry thoroughly then set aside in a large bowl.
- Prepare dressing by combining all of the ingredients in a small bowl and mixing well. I like to use a food processor to mince the garlic and orange zest then I add the rest of the ingredients and blend.
- Pour the dressing into the large bowl and massage the kale with your hands for about one minute, until it is well coated with the dressing.
- Add the goat cheese to the finely chopped nuts (again, I like to use the food processor to finely chop the nuts) and mix together until the goat cheese is covered.
- Once the vegetables are done roasting, remove them from the oven and drizzle with honey. Sprinkle them with the ground ginger and stir around until evenly coated in the glaze.
- Distribute the kale onto separate plates and arrange roasted veggies on top.
- Finish with a few tablespoons of goat cheese and serve.