Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Kale and Persimmon Salad

Persimmons will always make me think of my friend Courtney - she earned the nickname "Miss Persimmon" by the owners of one of the Minneapolis Asian grocery stores because once the fruits came in season, she would buy them by the case she loved them so much!  Courtney, you'll have to make a couple of adjustments to make this salad vegan, but it will showcase your favorite fruit no matter what.  Here's to Miss Persimmon, and this delicious salad!

YIELD: 4 quart-sized salads

  • 2/3 c apple cider vinegar, divided
  • 1 1/2 tsp honey, divided
  • 1 medium shallot, thinly sliced
  • kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1/3 c extra-virgin olive oil
  • freshly-ground black pepper
  • 4-8 oz steak, grilled or broiled until medium-rare, cooled, and thinly sliced
  • 4 oz bleu cheese, crumbled
  • 2 persimmons, cored and cut into wedges
  • 4-8 oz kale, stemmed and shredded
  • 1/2 c pecans, toasted and roughly chopped

  1. Make the pickled shallots: combine 1/3 c apple cider vinegar, 1/2 tsp honey, shallot, and a pinch of kosher salt; toss well to combine.  Let sit for 10 minutes until shallots are pickled; drain and reserve shallot.
  2. Make the honey-dijon vinaigrette: combine the remaining 1/3 c vinegar, 1 tsp honey, dijon, olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste in a pint-sized mason jar or other tall container.  Puree and emulsify the dressing using a handheld stick blender. 
  3. Pack the salads: divide the vinaigrette evenly between each of 4 tall quart-sized containers.  Layer the pickled shallot, steak, bleu cheese, persimmon, and kale in the jars.  Divide the pecans evenly between 4 2-oz jars or snack-size zip-top bags for each salad.  Refrigerate until serving.
  4. Enjoy your salad: invert your salad onto a plate or into a bowl.  Top with pecans.
TIME-SAVING TIPS: Use your favorite store-bought vinaigrette and croutons in place of the homemade vinaigrette.  Use bagged baby kale in place of the shredded kale.

SPECIAL DIET SWAPS: For a vegetarian salad, omit the steak.  For a vegan salad, also substitute agave nectar for the honey in the dressing and your favorite non-dairy bleu cheese or feta crumbles for the dairy cheese.  For a nut-free salad, substitute sunflower seeds for the pecans.  This salad is gluten-free as-is.

Food styling, photography, and infographics by Robert Campbell.

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