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Eat Your Vegtables!!

Recently we dined for lunch at Cracker Barrel. We both had the daily special which was chicken breasts on a bed of wild brown rice. Of course, if you know the restaurant chain, the entrees come with two fresh side dishes of your choice from the menu. I always favor their green beans, so that was one I chose. The other was from the little display tablet on the table, advertising their newest side order...Kale Salad. It looked very good, and the description was just to my liking...everything mixed in the side dish are some of my favorites - dried cranberries, pecans, brussel sprouts, maple vinaigrette dressing with a beautiful dark green kale. When our orders arrived, the chicken and rice was piping hot...delicious. The beans of course, delicious with the old, home-style bacon bits! Then, the taste test....the kale. Out of this world delicious! Now I must confess, I've never ever in my life had kale to my knowledge. I've seen it on serving plates as a color adding feature with an orange slice....I've eaten the orange slice but never touched the kale. After all, it's a vegetable! And since mom always said "Eat your vegetables" I still to this day tend to be on the verge of defiance. "Nope. nope! If you say it's good for me, I'm not gonna do it!!"

Next visit to the grocery store, I picked up all the ingredients to try and replicate the salad I had. I also went out on Google and researched the heart health benefits of kale. Guess what? It's good for you. In fact it is TOP in the World Health list of the best, healthiest foods!! Go figure. The kale works with your body's bile to burn the BAD cholesterol and adds to the GOOD cholesterol [which is essential to a healthy body battery...the pumper...the heart]  All this time, my mom was right...eat your vegetables. lol

This is what I did, and it turned out pretty good. I had no idea the portion ratio of any thing, and I never measure stuff when I cook...

I used:
[all ingredients are approximated]

1/2 pound of fresh, raw brussel sprouts [whole]
1 large stem of raw curly leaf kale [about 2 cups] (cut)
1 small package of chopped pecans
1 cup of dried cranberries
1/4 cup of maple syrup [the REAL stuff!]
1/4 cup of sesame oil [I read a recipe online that uses olive oil]
and a dash of dried mustard

In a blender filled with water, I chopped at low speed the sprouts and kale. Drained this mixture in a colander.


After the vegetables drained I placed in a large mixing bowl and added the cranberries and pecans. Then, mixed in the syrup, oil, and dried mustard.


I then covered it and chilled to a cold temp and served as a side dish with pork chops and baked potato. I made brownie points with Bud. He liked it...I thought it needed more maple flavoring, so with the leftover salad, I added another 1/4 cup syrup. A sweet, complimentary salad with a crisp, crunchy texture that was good for the taste palate!!

It's also loaded with a good portion of Vitamin K
which is good for aged eyes/vision!!

13 comments :

  1. Hello, I have always loved kale and most veggies. My mother made kale often with ham. Your recipe looks delicious, thanks for sharing. Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend!

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  2. I eat kale daily Welcome to my world! I have it steamed and without any sweet anything, I love the taste of it, but i might add a few dried cranberries, that sounds delish. :-)

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  3. I tried Kale once about a year ago and thought I would gag, but I had made Kale crisps out of it per found on FB. I am laughing now, I had never had it and swore not to. this morning I came home with Kale.. I was told it is good for constipation... I said I will just eat a few pieces a day like it is medicine. with breakfast, I ripped off a curly piece and ate it plain. I was shocked I liked it. I will be adding it to my salads now. I can't eat what you made, because of the maple syrup, I wonder how it would taste without it. also I don't own a blender. but I will be eating my kale once a day, even on a sandwich instead of lettuce.. this looks fantastic.. since Jan 28 I have eaten more fruit and veggies than I have in my whole life.

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  4. I have substituted kale for spinach in quiche. It was great but I've never eaten it raw.

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  5. Fresh, raw brussel sprouts... a chill went down my spine...but I trust your opinion!! :)

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  6. You must be a wonderful cook to be able to do this! actually I have never eaten kale either!! I do know it is so good for you! And our daughter-in-law makes kale chips! the grandkids love them. We have a Cracker Barrel very close, they serve home cooked food. And I LOVE their gift shop!

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  7. I haven't been to a Cracker Barrel in years. We don't have one close to us but I would love to try this salad so I guess I will just have to put it together myself. I will try your recipe as it sounds delish. Hugs, LJ

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  8. I don't think I've ever had kale either. That salad does sound good. I would try it but I know for a fact Wade wouldn't eat it

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  9. I've never had kale but this looks pretty tasty!

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  10. Oh my....I have had raw kale, the first time I ever had it....and NEVER again. I have had some pretty good kale salad and I have had different flavor fried kale chips, also pretty decent. But, I can't seem to forget that first bitter taste and due to that, I find it hard to order, buy or fix kale.

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  11. Now this would be just what my mother would love to have, as kale was one of her favorite vegetables. She ate very healthy all of her life. Enjoy those yummy vegetables and the rest of your weekend too!

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  12. I hadn't eaten Kale before until a short time ago. Don't know why I didn't buy more but I'm sure I would love this salad.

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  13. I've been changing my diet and this would fit right in for eating well. :) It looks delicious! I may just make this! :)
    happy Sunday,
    Marie

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