Ever since 2009, we’ve been a part of a CSA farm share. This year, for various reasons, we decided to bow out – though right now, I can’t really think of why other than the logistics of picking up the bin. And honestly, I’m missing our weekly share. It introduced us to a lot of vegetables I wouldn’t normally pick up. Some were oddballs that I made work, others were vegetables I thought I hated but with the proper technique I learned to love.
Luckily, our neighbourhood has a plethora of mom and pop markets along with a few good organic grocers. I’m not wanting for much which makes missing our CSA a bit easier to bear. To pick up a choice of several varieties of local kale, or a gigantic ball of jicama, or a pint of fragrant local raspberries, I just have to pack my bags and walk a few blocks down the road. I’m pretty lucky. And yet, after a good month of being a vigilant meal planner combined with the ease of shopping, I’ve dropped the ball. It’s probably in part to being busier at work and having a more scattered brain, but I’ve been feeling like all my meal expectations have flown the coop. This week I am truly sucking when it comes to dinner.
At least I can think back on last week when I made this terrific kale and millet salad. It’s filled with all kinds of things you’d find in a greek salad: cucumbers, kalamata olives, red onions, red peppers, feta, a balsamic dressing. Add in your freshest garden tomatoes if that’s your thing (it’s definitely not mine). But the main twist is the kale and millet added to make this a more healthful meal. The kale gets lovingly massaged with a little oil and vinegar and the millet bulks things up.
It’s a quick meal to and it’s perfect for hot summer evenings when making dinner is the last thing on your mind. Like tonight. As in, I should make this tonight. The ingredients are probably ones you’ve already got on hand. Don’t have millet? Don’t fear – throw in some quinoa, farro, wheat berries or even couscous. I also think chickpeas would add in more texture and protein. It’s flexible and forgiving with ingredients, which is perfect for a harried evening.
kale & millet salad
This recipe served up 2 large bowls, but it’s easy to double the recipe. Looking to add more protein? Bulk up the salad with chickpeas or diced cooked chicken, but we thought it was just perfect as is.
1/2 c millet
1/2 bunch of kale
1/2 cucumber, diced
1/2 red pepper, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 T red onion, finely
3 T balsamic vinegar
2 T olive oil
1 t dijon mustard
1/2 t honey or agave syrup
salt & pepper
feta cheese, crumbled
Add the millet to 1 cup of water and bring to a boil in a covered pot. Turn down heat to low and let simmer until water evaporates, about 15 minutes or so. Fluff with a fork and set aside.
Remove the tough ribs from the kale and slice the leaves thinly into ribbons. Add a pinch of salt and a smidge of oil into your serving bowl along with the kale and massage for a minute or so until the leaves turn wilty and dark green. Add in the diced vegetables along with the millet.
In a small jar, shake together the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, mustard, honey and salt & pepper. Taste & adjust seasonings if needed. Pour over the salad and toss well. Sprinkle with olives and feta cheese, divide between 2 bowls and serve.