Vacationing in Italy was one of the best foodtastic experiences ever. As someone who loves food to the billionth degree, I was compelled to try every version of pasta, cornetto (an Italian version of a croissant), and pizza. Sure, there were veggies and salads on the menus, but was I really going to make it all the way over there to have salad??? Hell to the no! So I ate. And I ate. And I napped. And then I ate some more. With zero ounce of guilt!
In the last several months I have been eating more beans, whole grains, and less dairy, so all that flour and cheese, I’m sure, shocked the heck out of my body. So I knew once I got back to the states, my insides would need a bit of cleaning. I scoured the net for the most cleansing foods and naturally leafy greens were on the list, along with parsley, lemon, and surprisingly, garlic. And so, my Cleansing Kale Salad was born.
It seems silly to write a recipe for salad when all you really do is just chop up some fresh produce and toss it in a bowl. So feel free to add or take away from my version, but keep in mind that for it to be a cleansing salad you want to use ingredients which are most cleansing to your body. See here and here for some great cleansing food options.
Cleansing Kale Salad (Makes 1 serving)
4 cups chopped kale
1/2 cup chopped zucchini
1/2 cup chopped summer squash
1/2 cup chopped cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1 clove of garlic, minced
Juice of 1 lemon along with its zest
Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
Here’s the hard part. Chop up all the veggies, mince the garlic, and place in a large bowl. Zest* and juice the lemon right into the same bowl. Drizzle with oil. Using your hands or some tongs, mix all ingredients. Because kale is much more substantial in texture than lettuce, you can let it sit in the dressing for a bit, this actually adds even more flavor. I let mine absorb the dressing for about 10 minutes before chowing down.
*When zesting your lemon go easy on the pressure. Try to only grate off the yellow skin and not the white pulp which tastes bitter.