NEW YORK CITY — The weather outside might be frightful, but you don't have to load up on filling and fatty foods to bolster yourself against the winter cold.
Help boost your energy levels and stay trim during these long winter months with this nutritious salad that is loaded with vitamins, minerals and fiber.
Oh, and it tastes great, too.
Kale, a bitter green that can be found in stores throughout the winter, is chock-full of fiber, Vitamins A, C and K, and minerals such as iron, magnesium and phosphorus.
In just one cup of this cruciferous, green superfood, there is more than 200 percent of the recommended daily allowance of Vitamin A and more than 100 percent of Vitamin C, according to analysis on Self.com.
In addition to the anti-oxidant vitamins, kale is also rich in lutein and xeaxanthin, which help promote eye health, WebMD says. And the fiber in the veggie helps lower cholesterol, especially when cooked.
Typically, kale is briefly sauteed or steamed, but this salad uses the vegetable raw — taking advantage of its crunch and deep green color.
The bitter, sulfuric bite that is sometimes associated with kale is mellowed by a tangy vinaigrette that uses Meyer lemons, a sweet version of the citrus fruit that is in season in winter.
The Meyer lemon is an aromatic, juicy fruit that has less acid than regular lemons and has hints of orange.
Filling out the salad are the tart and sweet crunch of green apples, crunchy fennel with its mild licorice taste, red onions for bite and roasted pistachios for a salty balance.
Why take a multivitamin when you can help beat the winter blues with this nutritious and delicious winter salad that can be made in a flash.
Bunch of kale, cut into strips
1 fennel bulb, stems and fronds intact
1/2 red onion
2 green apples
1/2 cup roasted, salted pistachios
Zest and juice of 1 Meyer lemon
1 red grapefruit, half of it juiced and the rest divided into sections.
Goat cheese (optional)
Salt and Pepper
1. Make the vinaigrette.
2. Season the Meyer lemon juice and 1 tbs. grapefruit juice with salt and pepper and whisk in the oil until the vinaigrette is thick. Let stand.
3. Remove the stems from the kale leaves and stack the leaves on top of each other. Cut into half-inch strips — about 4 cups.
4. Core, quarter and thinly slice the apples.
5. Cut the stems off the fennel bulb and slice thinly, about a cup. Cut the stems into bite-size sections and add, along with the fronds, to the bowl.
6. Mix all of the ingredients and toss with enough vinaigrette to coat.
7. Plate and sprinkle pistachios and goat cheese over the top.