Sometimes the simplest combinations can be the most fantastic. In this salad, superfoods unite for a protein and vitamin packed lunch. If you’re a carnivore, think about topping this with grilled curry spiced chicken breast, or even a nice seared slab of chimichurri rubbed grouper. The options are endless. The best part is the salad can be separated into individuals containers, and eaten throughout the week as a grab and go lunch option. The kale is sturdy and stays crunchy from Monday-Friday. Mix it up daily with new proteins, dressings, or enjoy as is. Right now I’m mad about lentils, and here’s why you should be too:
- good source of protein, especially for vegetarian and vegans
- provide slow burning energy to keep stamina up
- promotes digestive health with dietary fiber
- great source of folate and potassium
- contains B6, folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin K
- glutathione, an antioxidant that fights of disease in the body and slows the aging process
- full of cartenoid antioxidants, which are anti-inflammatory
- a healthy fat, containing omega 3 fatty acids which keep the brain sharp, skin glowing, and hunger at bay
Coconut: I could write ALL day about the benefits, so I’ll just name a few now.
- helps protect against osteoporosis
- a low glycemic food
- contains antibacterial, antifungal, antiparasitic healing properties
- great for skin & hair, containing omega 3 fatty acids
A killer resource for a comprehensive list of coconut’s is on The Coconut Research Center’s page.
French Lentil, Kale, Coconut & Avocado Salad: Serves 4
1 cup cooked french lentils, cold
1 head Tuscan kale
1/2 red onion, sliced
1 cup unsweetened organic coconut flakes
1 avocado, cubed
Begin my washing the kale thoroughly and patting dry. Sometime kale can have a bit of grit to it, which can really throw a wrench in your salad plans. It’s like biting down on sand at the beach. Remove the stems and give the leaves a rough chop. Combine in a large salad bowl with the lentils.
In a separate bowl, sprinkle about a teaspoon of sea salt over the red onion, mix by hand, and let sit for 5 minutes. This will “sweat” the onions, taking the bite off. After 5 minutes, rinse under cold water. Add the onions to the kale with the coconut flakes and avocado. Just like that it’s ready to eat or store for the week.
Simple olive oil and an aged balsamic vinegar work great as a dressing. Today I used a simple tahini and nutritional yeast dressing a la Oh She Glows style. I’m going to save all the amazing benefits of nutritional yeast (FULL of B vitamins to name just one) for another day.