I spent last weekend in Chelan, Washington and brought back a TON of  just picked Washington apples!  In my attempt to lay off the sweets, this time I decided to use them for something other than an apple crisp.  I found this recipe online and plan to whip this up for this week’s salad.   I may decide to skip the kale massage and salt part, but we’ll see.  Ether way, I’m looking forward to enjoying my healthy salad.

The bright flavors and crisp, layered textures of this salad will immediately bring you out of your winter-time funk. First off, let me explain what massaged kale is (other than pure-green-bliss). Kale is kind of hard in it’s raw form; it’s tense, it’s chewy, and super bitter–not the best–unless sauteed, baked, or, massaged with sea salt. And massaging works really with Dinosaur kale–the flat, dark green leaf, not the frilly leaves of Russian and other varieties of kale (although, you can use those too). To massage kale: take about a teaspoon of nice sea salt and sprinkle it over washed dinosaur kale leaves cut into 1/4 inch wide strips all tossed into a bowl. It’s up to you if you want to leave the stems on–sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t. Then, using your hands, squeeze the kale vigorously, so that the kale softens and moisture begins to sweat out. Take a moment and taste a piece to see if you need to add a little more salt, it really brings out the moisture and softens up the leaves nicely. The result is delicious! The dressing for this salad was light, refreshing, and perfect for the cold/flu season as there is no oil base for it and it’s packed with good vitamins. Feel free to experiment with roasted pumpkin seeds or tamari almonds instead of the sunflower seeds as well. Enjoy!

Serves 2-4

1.  Rinse off the kale, Cut crosswise into 1/4 inch pieces, including stems if using dinosaur kale. Sprinkle on 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and begin to squeeze the kale and salt vigorously with your hands so that the kale softens    and moisture begins to sweat out. Taste it to see if you need any more salt, which you probably will. Massage the kale until it’s moist and tender.

2.  Mix together the lemon juice, honey, and ginger, and combine with the kale. Toss together. Slice up the apple into small chunks, the radish, the avocado, add the roasted sunflower seeds and some pepper–toss it and serve.

  3.  *to roast sunflower seeds, put into a shallow pan, preheat your oven onto 350 degrees F and bake for 10-15 minutes. For lighter a roast, 10 minutes, for a darker roast, 15 minutes. Enjoy!