All you want for Christmas is a Christmas salad – right? Ok, maybe not, but in between all of the cookies and other sweet treats, doesn’t it just feel so good to eat something nourishing before your next cocktail? This salad is packed with so many things that I crave, like dark leafy kale and hearty farro; and to make it extra festive – hazelnuts and pomegranates. It’s the salad that looks like a Christmas tree.
You can use either lacinato kale (pictured) or curly kale for this recipe. I usually find curly kale to be a little bit softer, but this pretty bouquet of local lacinato was on the smaller side so the leaves were nice and tender – especially after massaging them with this tangy dressing.
This salad looks gorgeous as a side dish on your holiday table or is delicious with soup for a cozy night in. If you want to make it a meal on its own, add your protein of choice, and pack it up for lunch during the week. It’s great the second day (and also the third).
- ½ cup uncooked farro
- 1 small bunch kale (about 6 cups chopped, coarse stems removed)
- Squeeze of lemon
- ⅓ cup toasted hazelnuts, chopped
- ¼ cup pomegranate seeds
- ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese (optional)
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (or fresh lemon juice)
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- ½ teaspoon grated ginger
- ¼ teaspoon honey or maple syrup
- Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Rinse the farro, then add it to the boiling water. Reduce the heat and simmer for 45 to 90 minutes, or until fork tender. Drain and set aside.
- In a small bowl, make the dressing by whisking together the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, mustard, garlic, ginger, honey (or maple syrup if vegan), and a pinch of salt and pepper. (It'll taste very tangy but it'll mellow once it's tossed with the hearty kale and farro).
- Chop the kale into small pieces and place in a large bowl. Drizzle with ⅓ of the dressing, a squeeze of lemon, and a pinch of salt. Massage the kale until the leaves are soft and wilted. Add the cooked farro, hazelnuts, pomegranate seeds, feta, if using, and ⅓ more of the dressing. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Toss to coat and serve on plates or on a platter. Drizzle remaining dressing on top.