Kale salad with za’atar cauliflower & avocado-tahini dressing

Well, that’s a mouthful. (Literally and figuratively, hehe food jokes.)

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However, I feel a lengthy name is necessary for this salad because every part is equally important. The za’atar cauliflower is so addictive you could eat it on its own, and the avocado-tahini dressing is a total show-stopper.

This is one of those lunches you prep the night before, then assemble in your office’s kitchen, lingering slightly longer than necessary hoping someone will ask you about it so you can humble brag.

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Er, is that just me who does that? What can I say, the more I cook the more I become an insufferable narcissist.

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The recipe is actually a mash-up of two – the salad itself comes from Green Kitchen Stories and calls for a yogurt dressing. I’ve become obsessed with subbing avocado for dairy so I found the avocado-tahini dressing from Love & Lemons.

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The end result is a bowl containing all my favorite flavors. So delicious, so good for you, so obviously the answer to “What should I make for lunch tomorrow?”

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Kale salad with za’atar cauliflower & avocado-tahini dressing
(Salad adapted from Green Kitchen StoriesGreen Kitchen Stories, Dressing from Love & Lemons)

Yields 2 meal-sized salads

Note on the dressing: This recipe is really more of a sauce, so I started with the original measurements for lemon juice, olive oil and water, then added more of each, a little bit at a time, until I reached my desired consistency.

For the salad:
1 head of cauliflower chopped into bite-sized florets
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1 tablespoon za’atar, plus 1 teaspoon
1/2 large cucumber, seeded and sliced into half moons
14 ounce can of chickpeas
4 cups kale, center stalks removed and torn/sliced into bite sized pieces
3 tablespoons pomegranate seeds

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with foil.

In a medium bowl, toss cauliflower with 2 tablespoons olive oil, salt and 1 tablespoon za’atar, until coated. Spread evenly on the baking sheet and roast for 20-25 minutes, until soft and bronzed.

Meanwhile, drain chickpeas. Heat remaining olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add chickpeas and remaining teaspoon of za’atar, stirring to combine, and cook until slightly softened, about 5 minutes.

Remove cauliflower from oven and allow to cool slightly. Top kale with cucumber, pomegranate seeds, chickpeas and cauliflower and drizzle with avocado-tahini dressing, recipe below.

All ingredients can be prepped in advance and stored in separate containers until ready to assemble.

For the dressing:
1 small avocado or half of a large one
1 1/2 tablespoons tahini
1 small clove of garlic
2 tablespoons lemon juice, plus more to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more as needed
4 tablespoons water, plus more as needed
Salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients in blender or food processor until thoroughly combined and creamy in consistency. Add additional lemon juice, olive oil and water to thin consistency as needed, tasting after each addition.

Store in a sealed container or mason jar. Dressing will keep in fridge for about 3 days.

 

 

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