High Protein Spicy Vegan Kale Salad

Ingredients
  • 1 red pepper
  • 2 large carrots
  • 4 ounces mushrooms
  • 1 jalapeño
  • 4 Tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • red pepper flakes, to taste
  • chili powder, to taste
  • smoked paprika, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 4 cups kale, chopped
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 cup pepitas
  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • hot sauce, to taste
  • 1 avocado
Instructions
  • Preheat oven to 500°
  • Quarter red pepper and roast for 30-40 minutes, or until skin blackens.
  • While red pepper is roasting, cut carrots in half and then cut diagnolly into 1" inch slices. Chop mushrooms and jalapeño. Place veggies in large bowl and toss with 2 Tablespoon olive oil, salt and pepper, red pepper flakes, chili powder, smoked paprika, and liquid smoke. Set aside.
  • Remove large stems from kale and chop to size preference. Toss with 1 Tablespoon olive oil, salt, and lime juice. Set aside.
  • Drain and rinse black beans. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in skillet over medium heat. Add black beans and season with salt and pepper. Saute until warm.
  • Toast pepitas in small skillet over medium heat for 5-10 minutes. 
  • When red pepper is finished roasting, lower oven temperature to 400°. Set red pepper aside and add seasoned veggies to baking sheet. Roast for 20 minutes. 
  • While veggies are roasting, remove skin from red pepper. Add to blender with tahini and hot sauce. Process until smooth. Season to taste.
  • Arrange kale, roasted veggies, and black beans on dish. Top with avocado, pepitas, and dressing.

The fridge is full and there's nothing to eat

I'm not really a fan of salads. They get pretty boring for me. Raw veggies over greens with dressing. Yawn. I want my coffee with caffeine and my food with effort.

So, when my inventory was directing me towards a salad, I had to figure out a way to get excited. Here's what I had:

Can you see the concept emerging yet? Obviously, kale would be the base. Now, I haven't decided if kidney beans are infelxible or if I don't know how to use them properly, so until the jury is out on that, my 3 cans of kidney beans will have to hang around until I make chili. Maybe I should stop buying them? Black beans it is.

Black beans are versatile, yet I have a tendency to associate them with Tex-Mex. Elementary? Yup. And today I don't care. Broccoli out. Lemons out. Limes, avocado, and pepitas in. Carrots and jalapeños were an easy association. When you're at a Mexican restaurant with carrots and jalapeños, you're in a place worthy of God. Those mushrooms were about to spoil; they had to get used. (Next time I make this, I will skip the mushrooms.)

I eat tahini all. the. time. Creamy, filling, and functional, it will change your life. To spice it up, I'd roast my bell pepper and process them together with hot sauce.

Toast the pepitas. Massage the kale with oil, salt, and lime juice. Cut the avocado. Serve. 

We're talking about a lot of protein here. Kale, black beans, and pepitas. Plus the protein from tahini, and minimal amounts from the veggies. This recipe makes 2 servings and it clocks in over 40 grams of protein per serving. If you believe in "complementary proteins", it's covered here with black beans and pepitas. This, my friends, is the answer to:

Later!

Amos Lee

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