Oh my gosh do I have a PHENOMENAL recipe for you! And it comes with a story!
So – you may remember that my special gentleman moved during the thick of the pandemic. And I joined him on his apartment hunt! We went all over the city, looking at alllll different types of apartments – it was fascinating.
Well, as one does while apartment hunting, we would get hungry, and would try to eat at a local neighborhood restaurant around the properties, just to get a feel and flavor of the area.
So, the lunch we had right before he found his apartment was a phenomenal little eatery called Friedman’s West. They have a few locations throughout Manhattan, but it is a quintessential NYC brunch/lunch spot.
And the salad I had was out of this world. It was a citrus salmon kale salad that was kissed with juicy orange segments; buttery avocado; salty, crunchy almonds and hearty beets!
It was seriously one of the best salads I’ve ever had, and believe me….on the Specific Carb Diet…I know salads.
SO over the weekend, Steven wanted to recreate that salad, as we are both on a health kick before we leave for Wisconsin on Friday for the Fourth of July!
And my, my, my friends. Our homemade version was even better than I remember! (Because it was made with love, of course! (And massaged kale! haha))
Steven made his with rotisserie chicken (so easy), and I made mine with frozen cooked shrimp (also incredibly easy)!
Speaking of easy: I recently found this brand “Love Beets” ((NOT SPONSORED!)) But they are fully cooked, organic beets that are vacuum packed and ready to eat! They’re in the produce department. And they are a game changer! No more red-stained cutting boards or messy cleanup!
And wouldn’t you know, Steven has made this three times since! So, I think it’s safe to say, it’s a hit!!!
And it’s gluten free, Paleo, Keto and Specific Carb Diet friendly!
Here’s What You Need: Serves 2
3 “Love Beets” — or 2 whole, roasted beets, sliced
1 orange, segmented — reserve the juice for the dressing
1 avocado, sliced
1 cup dry roasted, salted almonds – rough chop
4 stalks of kale, stem removed, chopped and massaged with olive oil and salt
1 cup baby spinach
3 ounces of rotisserie chicken, sliced
6 shrimp (I used frozen cooked shrimp, and just thawed it!)
3 Tbsp EVOO
2 Tbsp Orange Juice (just squeeze the leftover orange pulp from above)
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
Good chef’s knife
Large Mixing Bowl
Small mixing bowl
Start out by thawing your shrimp, if using.
First, you’re going to want to massage your kale. This is really important, as it makes it softer, more easily digestible, and just plain tastier! Put your de-stemmed, chopped kale in a large bowl, drizzle it with 2 tsp EVOO and two pinches of sea salt, and with clean hands, get in there and massage it. I liken the motion to hand-washing something in the sink. You’ll feel it begin to soften and break down, turning a deep emerald green color!
Next, add the rest of your ingredients (minus the chicken or shrimp) to your bowl with the kale!
Combine your dressing ingredients, and mix to thoroughly combine.
Drizzle your dressing over your kale, and mix to combine.
To plate, serve half of the kale mixture to each person. Top each with half of an avocado – sliced – and the protein of choice!
Serve with an iced tea, and enjoy a fabulous, NYC brunch-worthy salad!
OH MY GOSH was this ever delicious! Steven and I joked that if we would have ordered this salad out at a restaurant, it would have literally been about 28 dollars…..$18 for the salad itself, and then $6 for the additional protein and $4 for the avocado! (Don’t you just love NYC prices?)
I’m telling you what – this is the salad that DREAMS are made of, people. DREAMS!! The colors, the flavors, the textures! The healthy components!
I consider myself a salad connoisseur, as that’s always my go-to-topped-with-salmon at a restaurant. It’s Specific Carb Diet friendly, and incredibly hard to mess up! SO, believe me, I know the trifecta of a good salad: There’s gotta be a crunch, there’s gotta be a creamy/fat component, and there’s gotta be staying power from protein. And this salad had all of them!
First of all, the nice crunch of the almonds were so satisfying! That, coupled with the cool, creamy and buttery avocado and the earthy beets. Just terrific.
Secondly — the flavor! Oh my gosh, oranges are SO SWEET this time of year, so take advantage of it! The citrus notes really sung, and their sweetness really brought out the natural sweetness of the beets. They are a pair that are made in Heaven! Plus the salty almonds and the meaty chicken or shrimp. YUM!
Finally, I think it goes without saying, but this dish was absolutely gorgeous. I mean, stunning, really. I would be proud to serve this at a dinner party or a luncheon, easy! The colors are just eye-popping! You start drooling just by looking at those sweet little orange segments peeking through the kale!
And speaking of kale – ok WOW – if you’ve never massaged your kale before, PLEASE DO! Most people don’t like kale, because they’ve never had it prepared properly. Let someone try it when it’s shown a little love….they will be singing a different tune! There’s absolutely NO bitterness or that “harsh green” flavor as my dad so lovingly calls it 🙂
Just do yourself a favor: make this dish! Your taste buds will thank you! 🙂
“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5
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