As of late, my favorite meal to host is brunch. I get to feed people, one of my favorite activities, and people get to be fed by me, which I assume is one of their favorite activities, though I can’t say for sure. Thus, brunch is the inspiration for this light salad. It’s healthy, tasty and perfect for Spring. And if the phrase “brunch salad” didn’t win your heart, the Lemon Vinaigrette will. It is the silkiest, lemony-est, most delightful dressing. It’s simple to make too. I learned how to do it from the fabulous and informative staff at Salumeria Rossi. If you happen to have a porch with a Wisteria tree overhang, you really have everything covered. Except for the wine – which your brunch guests should bring themselves.Print
Kale and Roasted Root Vegetable Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
- Yield: feeds 2–3 people 1x
For the Salad:
Kale: 1/2 bunch from the grocery store should do it. Chop it up into bite size pieces.
Red russet potatoes: about 6, quartered.
Multicolored carrots: I used yellow, orange and purple varieties. Peeled, and quartered.
Asparagus: Small bunch, maybe about 10-12 stalks. You can use more if you like.
Chicken or Turkey sausage: 2 links, removed from casings.
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup white wine
For the Dressing:
1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil (first cold pressed, please!)
The juice from 1/2 lemon
Small tupperware bowl with a lid…or any container with a lid
For the salad:
First, we roast the root veggies. Heat up your oven to 350 degrees (I actually used my toaster oven for this purpose). Place your chopped veggies and taters in a bowl. Sprinkle with sea salt, fresh chopped rosemary and drizzle with olive oil. Mix it up, so that it all gets evenly coated.
Lay your seasoned, oiled veggies out on a cookie tray and place them in the oven for about 25 minutes, or until they turn both soft and crispy. You maybe want to give them a flip halfway through their cooking time.
Remove them from the oven and set them aside.
While the veggies are roasting, you can start up the sausage.
In a skillet or frying pan, heat up about 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
Add in the sausage and break it up with a wooden spoon. Sprinkle in a little more sea salt, black pepper and rosemary if you like. Allow the sausage to brown up a bit.
As the sausage is cooking, add in the 1/4 cup of white wine. Let the sausage cook in the wine until the wine is almost completely reduced. This should take about 15 minutes, at which point your sausage will be cooked and it will still be moist and flavorful due to the wine it has absorbed.
I preferred my asparagus steamed. And there’s a super-handy trick for steaming green veggies like asparagus. Here’s what to do:
Boil some wanter. Plunge your asparagus in the boiling water for about 2 minutes. You don’t want them to be soggy. I hate soggy veggies. You want the crisp – they need snap.
Ready a colander in the sink. Pour your asparagus into the colander, allowing the boiling water to drain out. Immediately rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
Your veggies will be bright green like a newly bloomed tree in spring time. You can thank me later. Or now…now’s always good.
By now your root veggies should be roasted, your sausage cooked and your asparagus steamed. What to do now? Throw them all in a salad bowl and make some Lemon Vinaigrette!
For the dressing:
Pour the olive oil into a small tupperware bowl with a lid. Squeeze the juice from 1/2 of a lemon into the olive oil.
Place the lid securely on and SHAKE! SHAKE THE Buh-jeezus out of it! Alternately, if you are opposed to shaking (who are you?), you can wisk it up in a bowl.
The lemon juice will be nicely incorporated into the oil. Pour it over the salad and mix it all up.
Pick out one piece of sausage and test it….and then one more….