One of my biggest pet-peeves is when someone takes credit for another person’s work. There’s no shame in mimicking someone else. We should emulate people we feel are great, imitation being a form of flattery after all. There’s certainly nothing wrong with being inspired by others either, or leaning on someone else’s experience and knowledge to achieve a goal. Seriously, life is hard and we should work together! We should build each other up, treat each other with kindness, and acknowledge the efforts made by another to make something great.
“The more credit you give away, the more will come back to you. The more you help others, the more they will want to help you.” – Brian Tracy
There’s many places where I find inspiration and greatness to mimic. I love watching a select few cooking shows (currently Cooks vs. Cons) and find all kinds of new ideas from what the chefs do willingly and under pressure. When I eat out, I love to see what the chef has done and think about how I might incorporate the idea. The two food-related emails I open consistently are from Epicurious and Saveur. Both have great recipes that have turned out wonderfully each time I’ve tried, and they are all feasible meals for a busy person like me.
All that being said, I can’t take full credit for this recipe. I was inspired by a very very similar dish I saw in an amazing slideshow on Epicurious starring kale. The link to the original recipe is here. As soon as I saw that picture, I had that feeling you get when something resonates completely with your style and vision. You know the one?
I made a few switches, namely upping the “krunch” factor and leaving out the cauliflower. It’s a great naturally vegan salad with very little work time! I actually made it twice, once according to directions, and a second time where I made it more to my liking. I had leftover rice that worked perfectly, making it a lot easier the second time around. Next time you make rice, make a little extra, lay it out to dry overnight, and refrigerate until you decide to make this salad.
Here’s a link for more delicious salads. As always, leave me a comment to let me know how you enjoyed this recipe!
Krunchy Kale SaladPrint Recipe
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tsp honey
- 1/4 cup short-grain brown rice
- Kosher salt
- Vegetable oil (for frying; about 1 1/2 cups)
- 1/2 small bunch curly kale, ribs and stems removed, leaves coarsely chopped (about 2 cups)
- 1/2 cup cucumber, thinly sliced and quartered
- 1 scallion, thinly sliced
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/3 cup roasted salted almonds
- 1/4 cup roasted salted pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- Freshly ground black pepper
6 hours before eating, bring 3/4 cup water to a boil in a small sauce pan. Cook rice until tender, about 40 minutes, checking water levels as you do. Drain rice, return to pot, cover for 10 minutes. Spread out on a baking sheet to dry (about 6 hours).
2 hours before eating, combine cranberries and vinegar in a small bowl. Let sit about 2 hours.
When read to eat, heat oil in a skillet up to about 1 inch thick over medium high heat (about 350°). Working in batches, cook rice in oil in a single layer until golden and puffed, about 1 minute. Using a fine-mesh sieve, transfer puffed rice to paper towels to drain; season with salt and pepper and let cool.
Meanwhile, pulse almonds and pepper flakes in a food processor until finely chopped. Transfer to large bowl. Working in batches, pulse kale in food processor until finely chopped (but NOT a puree!). Add to bowl with almonds, seeds, scallion, and cucumber.
Add the olive oil and lemon juice to the cranberries and whisk to combine - this will be your dressing. Add more vinegar to taste.
Pour contents into kale mixture along with puffed rice. Mix to combine and serve immediately.