Though I'm typically partial to the granny smith apple, a new favorite snack combo of mine is a gala or pink lady apple with fresh squeezed lemon on top. The tart lemon juice over the sweet apple is so refreshing (which is why it doesn't really go with the granny smith...tart + tart = tart....yay math!). SO, the foodie in me wanted to transfer this delicious snack into something I could shovel into my face as a meal side. Hence, the salad. This salad features the delicious combo of apple and lemon, as it uses my super simple lemon vinaigrette recipe. Throwing in some toasted almonds and goat cheese (omit if you're dairy intolerant) just sets it over the top.
Sidebar...is anyone else completely and utterly irked when you bite into an apple and it's mealy? That's half the reason I like granny smith's more, because they are RARELY mealy. Whereas I've had far too many experiences where I think I find a great gala or pink lady, and then I bite into it, and its like eating sand. Sick. It makes me genuinely angry to my core that something could deceive me so deeply. Additional sidebar...I'm limiting the red apple choice to gala and pink lady, because anyone who argues that the red delicious, macintosh or fuji apples are better, is seriously disturbed. Honestly, when I see the mountains of red delicious's in the grocery store, I want to know who in the hell buys them. "Mmmm...really craving that burgundy colored apple"...gross...I'll pass. Quite frankly, not even a granny smith beats out the honeycrisps...but those are in season for like 4 hours out of the year sooooo....moving on.
Triple sidebar...my dad has a weird gypsy hand for the perfect pink ladies and galas. I'm literally never concerned about the probability of biting into a mealy apple when I know my dad selected it. He's also super OCD about things being just right, so I always get a good kick out of the image of him standing over the apple mounds for twenty minutes and methodically groping each and every one (and then putting it back just so...in fact, he probably reorganizes the entire apple stand with satisfaction, knowing his arrangement is far superior to the way it looked when he arrived upon it). Love ya, POPS! And your apple picking skillz.
For the Pink Lady Kale Salad
- 1 bunch of kale, washed, drained and chopped
- 1 large pink lady, chopped/cubed
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- 1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
For the Simple Lemon Vinaigrette
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 tbsp dijon mustard
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 tbsp coconut vinegar (apple cider vinegar will also work)
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- Chop, rinse and drain your kale. Tip: chopping kale is super easy if you bunch it all together really tight, and use a big sharp knife to whiz through it.
- Add the chopped kale and diced apple to a large serving bowl.
- Over medium heat, toast the sliced almonds in an ungreased skillet for about two minutes, or until the almonds start browning. Stir constantly and pay attention as these are very easy to burn! Add the almonds to the salad and top with the goat cheese.
- Prepare the vinaigrette. Either whisk or blend all the ingredients together until it thickens (key here to is add the olive oil last and pour in slowly while whisking/blending).
- Dress the salad with desired amount of dressing and enjoy this delightfully light and refreshing salad!