A month into the new year, I’m still pretty much on the wagon, healthy-eating wise. Are you?
I whipped up a veritable rainbow of a salad that you might like for lunch or dinner. Chock full of super foods like kale, chickpeas and the Italian whole grain farro, it is lightly sweetened with fresh mango, blueberries and chopped dates, and dressed in a sprightly, lemony masterpiece of a dressing. It was so good I made it two days in a row!
Remember two months ago when I advised you to make some preserved lemons?
Well they’re ready, and let’s put them to good use! (Didn’t do it? You can buy them, but please take this opportunity to go and make some for next time, because we’ll be using them again. And again. It’s cheaper and easier to make your own.)
This salad will make Meatless Monday downright appealing! It also holds well overnight, even dressed, so you can make it ahead, or be confident in taking the leftovers for lunch the next day. And it can sit out on a buffet table at a potluck or party, without any harm.
Recipe: Mango Chickpea Kale Farro Salad
- 1 (16- to 19-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup cooked and cooled farro
- 1 cup diced firm-ripe mango
- 1/4 cup finely diced red onion
- 1/2 a red bell pepper, finely diced
- 1/2 a yellow bell pepper, finely diced
- 3 large lacinato kale leaves, stem removed and leaves sliced into fine ribbons (chiffonade cut) [aka Tuscan kale, dinosaur kale, black kale, Cavolo Nero]
- 1 jalapeno pepper, stemmed and seeded, finely minced
- ¼ of a preserved lemon, both skin and flesh, finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar (I used Calolea White Balsamic Vinegar)
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 Medjool dates, pitted and finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- Pomegranate arils
- 2 green onions, sliced
- Combine all salad ingredients (except garnishes) in a large salad bowl. Toss gently to mix well.
- Add all dressing ingredients to a 2-cup measure or tall bowl and puree, using an immersion blender.
- Pour dressing over the salad, toss gently, and let marinate for 30 minutes.
- Serve on plates or in wide bowls, and garnish liberally with blueberries, pomegranate arils and green onion.
- Serves 4 for a main salad, and 6 for a side salad.
- Melissa’s Produce sent the farro for recipe testing. Farro is a type of Italian wheat that is nutty and chewy when you cook it, a bit like barley, which may be substituted if you cannot find farro.
- Calolea sent the White Balsamic Vinegar for recipe testing. They are makers of high quality, artisanal olive oils and vinegars.
- The National Mango Board sent the fresh mangoes for recipe testing.
- If you don’t have preserved lemon, you may substitute a splash of lemon juice and a pinch of salt, to your taste. But make some preserved lemon, I beg of you!
Adapted from Chocolate & Chillies
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Diet type: Vegetarian, Vegan
Number of servings (yield): 4-6
Culinary tradition: USA (Nouveau)
I found inspiration for the salad on the blog Chocolate & Chillies, written by Asiya, a former actuarial analyst who now stays home to raise her two sons in Toronto. I was assigned her blog as part of Secret Recipe Club, and today is our reveal day.
Asiya is Indian and her husband is Pakistani, so her blog is peppered with delicious sounding Indian food, including Mango Lassi, Potato and Cauliflower Curry, Chicken Biryani and an intriguing Low-Fat Butter Chicken.
A woman after my own heart, she loves to try new recipes, and features Sweet Potato Fries with unusual spices , sweets like Baked Cake Doughnuts and two ice creams I would like to try – Fresh Mango (Eggless, No Machine & Low Fat), and Eggless Roasted Banana Ice Cream.
In the end, though, I stuck to my healthy eating plan, and took my inspiration from her beautiful Mango Chickpea Salad. The colors simply beckoned to me, and I could imagine how fresh it tasted just by looking at the picture. Thanks, Asiya, for the inspiring, healthy dinner!
I’ve made a number of delicious dishes from Secret Recipe Club over the months. Here’s a list of what else I have chosen to make from others’ blogs for reveal days, and what they have chosen to make from Shockingly Delicious, in case you want to choose something from these lists.
Readers, you can see what other cooks in the Secret Recipe Club made this month, right below here in the array of photos. Click any of them to be transported to that particular recipe!