Fall Apple Salad
1 large bunch kale
2 apples that are crisp
1/3 C dried cranberries
1/3 C toasted pumpkin seeds
¾ C goat cheese, crumbled. (Feta is a good alternative, if you prefer.)
1 small shallot, minced
1/3 C extra virgin olive oil
3 T vinegar, apple cider vinegar is best!
1 T local honey or maple syrup
2 tsp Dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste
- Remove tough ribs from kale. Tear or chop leaves into bite-sized pieces. Transfer to a bowl and drizzle with half the extra virgin olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and use your hands to massage kale leaves until tender.
- Prepare the dressing by whisking together the remaining extra virgin olive oil, apple cider vinegar, honey, and Dijon mustard. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Core 1 apple. (Peeling is optional as the peel contains good nutrition.) Chop it into bite-sized pieces. With the second apple, core and quarter it. Use a cheese grater to make apple "snow." Add to the salad bowl.
- Add dried cranberries and pumpkin seeds (see note below). Drizzle dressing over the ingredients.Toss to combine and thoroughly coat each item with dressing.
- Crumble cheese over the top and season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Optional: Add shredded carrots, broccoli or cauliflower flowerets, leftover chicken, etc. to the salad if you are in the mood to clean out the fridge!
In September and October, local Apples are at their peak in most of North America and non-farm kids of all ages (like our grandkids!) can enjoy markets for "pick your own" and bagged apples. To find a pick-your-own farm for apples and much more near where you live, check out pickyourown.org. Then learn to can and freeze!
Years ago, I acquired an apple peeler-corer-slicer that earns its place in our tool drawer when apples are in season. Your great-grandma may have had one. Most orchard shops and hardware stores sell them. Here are some apple freezing tips.
Prepare what is called "acidulated" water: a fancy name for water plus acid. Use about 1/4 cup lemon juice to 1 quart of cold water. As soon as you clean, peel, core and slice your fruit, with a gadget or by hand, let the slices swim in a bowl of lemon water to prevent them from browning. At this point, you could can them, but since freezers came on the scene in the 1950s, it is another simple way.
Strain (do not rinse) and pack apples tightly in freezer bags and label. It's a very good practice to keep records of what, when and where any food goes in your freezer (and your fridge and pantry) to reduce waste and aid in meal planning. Plan on wintertime apple crisp, applesauce, apple bread or pie!
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