A Kind Green Salad

I used to see a therapist who often stressed the importance of being kind to one’s body. I attempted to harness understanding from the phrase with the absolute minimum amount of effort. Sure, it sounded logical enough to not go through life intentionally effecting damage to your person, but I always responded to the phrase with such a literal interpretation. Whenever she would bring it up, I’d have a mental vision of a pencil-drawn stick figure punching itself upside the head with its ineffectual graphite fists. Since I’m as far from being a violent creature as is humanly possible, and since I certainly don’t walk around punching myself in the head, I figured that I already had the whole being kind to myself thing taken care of. Check! What’s next on the list?

A fuller understanding of the concept of kindness has since taken root. I catch hints of nuance embedded in many activities, but especially in eating. Although being kind entails giving your body what it wants, it also means eating what it needs. In a way, I derive a similar kind of joy from eating a dish of chocolate gelato as I do hunkering down with a bowl of greens. The pleasure of a good taste is mimicked by the pleasure of satisfaction of nourishment. It feels good to be kind!

This salad isn’t fancy but it’s packed with flavor and nutrients. Here’s the breakdown: kale (I used curly, but feel free to use any variety,) radicchio, hemp seeds, sweet and spicy basil dressing. I can eat a seriously HUGE bowl of this and call it a meal but if you remain skeptical that it’s not enough for you do not feel limited! Add whatever strikes you. I’m sure blanched cauliflower, grated carrot, tamari almonds, or cherry tomatoes would all be delicious. Try it first, then assess. Enjoy!

Kale and Radicchio Salad with Sweet & Spicy Basil Dressing

Serves 2

Ingredients:

1 Bunch Kale, stems removed, leaves roughly chopped

1 Small Head Radicchio, cored and chopped

2 T + 3 T EVOO

1 C Fresh Basil Leaves

1 tsp Soy Sauce

1 T Apple Cider Vinegar

1 tsp Lemon Juice

½ tsp Cayenne Pepper

1 tsp Agave Sweetener

2 T Hemp Seeds

S + P to taste

Directions: Place chopped kale in a large bowl. Drizzle with 2 T EVOO and massage oil into the leaves until they are tender and dark green in color (5 mins.) Add Radicchio.  In a blender, combine remaining 3 T EVOO, basil leaves, soy sauce, vinegar, lemon juice, cayenne, and agave. Blend until smooth. Pour dressing over salad and toss to coat. Sprinkle with hemp seeds. Season with salt and pepper if desired.

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