Friday, June 1, 2012

Confetti Salad

One of the things I love most about having a CSA is that it forces creativity in utilizing vegetables that you probably wouldn't have purchased if you would have shopped at the grocery store or even the farmers' market.

Like purple cabbage. Don't get me wrong: I love cabbage. Purple, green, white - I'll find uses for them all.

But a GIANT head of purple cabbage is probably not something I would ordinarily buy from the store. A head of cabbage goes a long way.

I have made several slaws and salads with this purple cabbage but yet still had half of the massive leafy vegetable. Also from the box and growing steadily older in my fridge: celery, carrots and half a red onion. What to do, what to do....

I will tell you what I did. I made this delicious "confetti" salad. I'm calling it that because there are so many colors going on and it is such an amalgamation of textures that it really reminds me of confetti.

The most delicious confetti ever.

And the great thing about making big batches of salad out of whatever you have laying around is that it gives you a healthy go-to snack or lunch option AND it probably saves you money by not throwing those veggies out at a later time because you couldn't think of a use for them. I used lemon in this dressing to give it some preservation power and some roasted chickpeas for a little protein kick (plus some extra fiber and flavor). I reckon it will stay good and crisp and fresh in the fridge for 3-4 days. That's my kind of confetti!

Fun fact: Did you know that cabbage is a good source of Riboflavin (aka vitamin B2)? Bet you didn't! But it is!
And what is Riboflavin good for?
It's good for metabolizing energy and helping your body process waste! Yay for cabbage!!

Confetti Salad
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and patted dry
  • 1 Tbsp Balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 large head of cabbage, chopped
  • 5 medium sized carrots, cut into 1/2 discs
  • 6 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 1/2 purple onion, diced
  • 1 large handful of italian parsley (or other fresh herb), chopped
  • 1/4 cup nori flakes OR a couple sheets of nori, finely chopped
For the Dressing:
  • Juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 2 Tbsp Spicy Mustard (or other mustard of choice)
  • 2 Tbsp flavored vinegar or apple cider vinegar (I had a bomb blueberry vinegar so I used that!)
  • 1 Tbsp Agave nectar
  • Splash of hot sauce (optional)

Preheat the oven to 425 and get those chickpeas roasting. To Roast: Toss chickpeas with balsamic vinegar and a bunch of seasoning of choice (I just used about 1 tsp curry powder and 1/2 tsp smoked sea salt). Grease a cookie sheet. Spread chickpeas evenly onto cookie sheet and pop in the oven for 20-25 minutes.

Meanwhile, chop all your veggies and combine them in a great big bowl.

Stir in the nori flakes.

In a separate, smaller bowl, whisk together all dressing ingredients.
Ahh how I love Instagram

When the chickpeas are done roasting, add them to the veggies and pour your dressing over the whole confetti concoction. Toss well and enjoy, knowing that your health is saving you time and money. (That's a deep realization right there).

Special Confetti Salad Bonus!

When your significant other is super stressed out and forgets his lunch AND his wallet at your house, you can pack him a super special lunch containing this delicious salad and make his day! Theoretically, if you were in this exact situation, of course.

I packed Colin this lunch containing Confetti Salad, a whole wheat pita, fresh cherries and blue berries, an apple, a Larabar, Coconut water and a couple squares of fair trade dark chocolate.

AND THEN I drove it downtown to him.

I try not to do super awesome things like this too often because I don't want to encourage him to "forget" his lunch and "forget" his wallet on a more regular basis :)

Just kidding! I love doing stuff like this when I have the time! There is nothing like a surprise healthy and satisfying lunch to make a stressful day better.

He also left his bike on the max so he really really needed it.

That's all for now, folks! Live long and prosper. And get creative with your own confetti salad!