During the holidays, our Test Kitchen cranks out the best cookies, cakes and slow-braised meats you can imagine (I can't remember the last time I ate a vegetable that wasn't drenched in butter). This might explain why we're craving this delicious and healthy salad from chef Jody Adams from Saloniki in Boston, Massachusetts.
Having lived in Greece as a child, Greek peasant salad is very near and dear to my heart, but in the dead of winter, it's hard to enjoy a dish that calls for out-of-season tomatoes and cucumbers. Adams's salad is a winterized alternative. The vinaigrette has authentic Greek flavors, such as oregano, red wine vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil. Tuscan kale is the perfect hearty green, and its texture complements the strong flavors of the kalamata olives and briny feta cheese. And, yes, we're still eating kale even after being exposed to atrocities like chocolate-covered kale chips.
When making this salad (or any other), test the seasoning of the vinaigrette on a piece of lettuce before dousing the entire bowl. This will help you get a better idea of how it tastes, especially since you wouldn't just eat the vinaigrette by itself. Or maybe you would. Whatever. We don't judge.
Winter Greek Salad
Recipe from chef Jody Adams, Saloniki, Boston, MA
Yield: 6 to 8 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: N/A
Total Time: 20 minutes
For the Red Wine Vinaigrette:
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon honey
½ teaspoon garlic, minced
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
For the Winter Kale Greek Salad:
1 cup (7 ounces) feta, crumbled
½ cup dried cranberries
½ cup (6 ounces) kalamata olives
1 tablespoon capers
12 stalks (½ bunch) Tuscan kale, stems removed and greens roughly chopped
4 green onions, thinly sliced
2 medium (8 ounces) carrots, peeled and julienned
2 celery stalks, thinly sliced
1 medium (8 ounces) green apple, cored and thinly sliced
¼ (6 ounces) medium head red cabbage, finely shredded
1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the red wine vinegar, mustard, oregano, honey and garlic. While constantly whisking, stream in the olive oil until incorporated and an emulsion forms. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and set aside for later.
2. In a large bowl, combine all of the salad ingredients and dress with the red wine vinaigrette. Season with additional salt and pepper if necessary, then serve.