Another early morning.  I love this time of day. The time before day break.  I have one-sided conversations with the dog (who at best cocks his head quizzically at me but most often casts me a baleful look). I’m roasting a bunch of vegetables for the week.  More often than not, Geoff wakes up to a house smelling like Brussel sprouts; not coffee and pastry—I’m such a good partner (debateable DOT DOT DOT).  Martha Stewart I am not, but laundry is done and I reorganized a couple of drawers in the kitchen.   I swear I’m more productive between the hours of 4:00-6:00 a.m. than I am the rest of the day. Good thing that I have a bunch of friends on the east coast and training partners in the west with whom I can talk. I never used to get up this early but let’s face it:  Women 40+ are friggin’ crazy!

Kale Salad "bejeweled" with pomegranate seeds.  Love the persimmons-can't get enough this time of year

Kale Salad “bejeweled” with pomegranate seeds. Love the persimmons-can’t get enough this time of year

Yet another Kale Salad in the archives. I absolutely love sherry vinegar as its nutty nuances provide a lovely contrast to the persimmons.   Speaking of persimmons, make sure you use the apple-shaped Fuyu type, which tastes like a cross between a pumpkin and an apple.   The teardrop-shaped Hachiya persimmon is very tannic and unpalatable unless you freeze it-it’s used mostly in English steamed puddings (honestly, they do best as part of a pretty holiday centerpiece).   I eat Fuyu persimmons as I would eat pears or apples. Loaded with vitamin A, they flood the produce departments  from November-February and I indulge as the season is so short. There is something special about only being able to get a certain type of produce during a relatively short window of time. I think we used to call that seasonality but those lines are now blurred as blueberries are flown in from South America in February and tomatoes are grown, picked green and gassed to red in Florida during the colder half of the year so that we have access to these products, albeit inferior, year-round.

Kale is a fairly sturdy green, so I’m directing you to “massage” the dressing into the kale (yes, Jene Shaw, I dropped the “M” word in describing the method for making this salad-LOL). to soften it a bit.  If I were taking this a couple of pretentious steps further, I would call this “Massaged Kale Salad bejeweled with Pomegranates, Persimmons, Toasted Organic Pistachios and Solera-aged Sherry-Shallot Vinaigrette”.  Doesn’t that sound sexy?……oh, the power of words.

Note Definition of  Fork Friendly when piece of food can fit on a fork and fits into mouth without having to bend or cut it

Holiday Kale Salad

  •  1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Avocado Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Sherry Vinegar
  • 2 tsp Agave Nectar
  • 1 small Shallot, minced
  • 1 clove Garlic, minced (optional, but I usually throw some in)
  • 1 Tbsp Whole Grain Mustard
  • ½ tsp Sea Salt
  • ½ tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 large head Kale, washed, de-stemmed and torn into “fork friendly” pieces (about 6 Cups)
  • 2 Fuyu Persimmons, thinly sliced
  • ½ Cup Toasted Pistachios or Hazelnuts
  • ¼ Cup Pomegranate Seeds

Method

  • In bowl large enough to toss kale with dressing, whisk the Olive Oil, Sherry Vinegar, Agave Nectar, Shallot, Whole Grain Mustard, Sea Salt and Pepper.
  • Don on a pair of gloves or make sure that your hands are very clean and massage the dressing into the kale for 30-45 seconds.
  • Transfer to serving piece
  • Top with Persimmon slices, Pistachios and Pomegranate seeds.

Yesterday, most of the Groove Girls headed out for a ride tricked out in various Betty Designs kits.  It was a blast riding the Elfin Forest loop and I look forward to many more rides with these ladies.

We're missing Heidi and Kristin in this pic, but digging the fashion out on Del Dios

We’re missing Heidi and Kristin in this pic, but digging the fashion out on Del Dios

Heading up to Alga long course Master’s today as coach extraordinaire “Hux” will be running it and then catching a run on the beach at low tide in the p.m.  San Diego in November……what’s there not to like?