Kale Salad with Roasted Parsnips and Pear

makes 4ish appetizer/side servings. you can make this a meal over warm or cold quinoa and lentils!

because the best kind of salad is the kind of salad that can hang out in your fridge, and potentially gets even better with time. great option for making the night before a dinner party or whenever you have lots of other day-of things to do.

for the dressing:

2 tbsp tahini or almond butter

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp horseradish (grated prepared kind is great to have around)

3 big cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp apple cider vinegar or rice wine vinegar

2 pinches salt

1 pinch cayenne pepper

dijon mustard (optional)

lemon juice (optional)

for the salad:

1 big bunch lacinato (dinosaur) kale, preferably, though any kind will do!  - washed, rinsed; then leaves torn, big ribs cut up very very very small or set aside for some other project if you hate raw kale ribs (I prefer them stir fried until tender in hashes)

2 parsnips (or more, because more is more), peeled and diced into smallish pieces

handful of shallots, peeled and diced into smallish pieces

olive oil, salt and pepper for roasting

1 hard pear - bosc is great here - sliced thin. a crisp and flavorful apple (perhaps pink lady or granny smith) will work too.


Heat oven to 400 F. Put all dressing ingredients in a small bowl and mix well. If you taste the dressing and it isn't zingy enough to your taste, add some dijon mustard and/or more horseradish.

In a large bowl, massage kale leaves (and ribs if using) with dressing for at least 5 minutes - the kale should seem to decrease in volume and grow more vibrant in color and glossiness. If the kale fully absorbs the dressing before 5 min, add more olive oil. Let hang out in fridge - it's great to do this an hour or more before serving, or even a day ahead. 

Toss parsnips with olive oil, salt, & pepper and spread out in roasting pan in single layer. Do same with shallots in a separate pan so that you keep your flavors potent and powerful by being apart. Put in oven. Shake pan and turn pieces every 5 or so minutes so vegetables brown evenly, should take 15-20 minutes. May need to turn oven up to 425 F towards the end. Once well-roasted, set aside to cool.

Taste a bit of kale and potentially drizzle with more salt/oil/tahini/horseradish/vinegar/lemon juice to your liking. Add slightly-cooled roasted vegetables and pear.