Featuring winter greens, this hearty salad is perfect for the cooler half of the year. Lately it has become one of my go-to staples. The raw veggies are super healthy, but the real star is the dressing. I’ve taken to using it on all sorts of salads, and even on soba noodles, and it’s equally delicious on all of them. I can’t take any of the credit for the dressing, since it comes entirely from this recipe, but I did put my own spin on the salad with a couple of additions.
Kale, Brussels Sprouts, and Tofu Salad
(Adapted from here)
1 16 oz container extra firm tofu
1 bunch green kale
12 brussels sprouts (about 2 big handfuls worth)
1 large carrot
1/2 tsp sea salt
3 tablespoons sliced toasted almonds
1/4 cup shaved Parmesan (use a vegetable peeler to shave the cheese into little strips)
1/2 cup tahini
1/4 cup rice vinegar
4 teaspoons white miso
4 teaspoons maple syrup
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 cup water
Heat the oven to 350°F. Grease a baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside. Slice the tofu into strips about 1/2-inch thick and 3 inches long. Place on the greased baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes, turning the strips over halfway through the cooking time. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
While the tofu is baking, use a knife to cut out the ribs of the kale leaves, and then chop or tear the kale into small, bite-sized pieces. Place the kale in a medium serving bowl and sprinkle half of the sea salt over the kale. Use your hands to massage the kale by lightly scrunching handfuls. Release and repeat until the kale becomes darker in color and more fragrant, gradually adding the remainder of the salt.
Chop off and discard the stem end of the brussels sprouts and any discolored outer leaves. Slice the sprouts as thin as possible, into a slaw. Add the sprouts to the bowl.
Peel the skin off the carrot and discard, then use the vegetable peeler to shave the remainder into the salad, until the carrot becomes too thin to shave any more.
In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the tahini, vinegar, miso, maple syrup and red pepper flakes. Whisk in the water until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Pour the dressing over the kale and sprouts and carrot and mix well.
Cut the cooled tofu into cubes, and toss with the salad.
Before serving, top with the toasted almonds and parmesan shavings. Serve immediately. Keeps well in the refrigerator for a day or two, but wait to add the almonds and Parmesan so they don’t get soggy.
Although I eat this for lunch all the time, it would also make a great Thanksgiving side salad, especially if you have vegetarians (or vegans, if you leave off the cheese), coming for dinner.