Vegan Kale Caesar with Farro & Sourdough Croutons

 

Happy New Year friends!! Whew, what a whirlwind week (slash year) it’s been!

How did you ring in the new year this year?? Nate and I spent the holidays traveling around visiting family, starting in North Carolina, driving to Atlanta, flying to upstate New York, and then flying back down south on New Year’s Eve (right before the ball dropped). We’re finally back home and having a peaceful (and productive) last day off before real life sets in again.

Dun, dun, duuunnnnnn.

Yeah, I’m not going to lie and say that I’m excited for the holidays to be over and to mentally prepare for those long winter months ahead. January through March are definitely not my favorite months of the year, but I’m determined to keep as much positivity as possible as the skies get grayer and the weather gets colder. I know it’s going to take a little more effort on my part— if you know me at all, you know how much I dislike the winter— but my 2017 goals will definitely help kick my butt into gear.

Speaking of which…

 

Vegan Kale Caesar with Farro & Sourdough Croutons

Vegan Kale Caesar with Farro & Sourdough Croutons // pumpkinandpeanutbutter.com

 

… I guess this is the time in the post where we talk about resolutions 😉 I’m not usually a resolution kind of person, but I always do a little reflecting as we ring in the new year about ways I want to grow and change in the coming year.

2016 was definitely a year of growth for my little family, mostly due to our wedding and new puppy. Nate and I grew stronger than ever and felt even more connected with this new, living, breathing thing in our lives that depended on us night and day (we love you, Augie!). 2017, I can already tell, will be a year of a different kind of growth.

 

Vegan Kale Caesar with Farro & Sourdough Croutons // pumpkinandpeanutbutter.com

Vegan Kale Caesar with Farro & Sourdough Croutons // pumpkinandpeanutbutter.com

 

My goals for this year are, honestly, a little selfish. I really want to focus this year on a little more personal growth— mostly revolving around finding a healthy balance with my personal life, professional life, and self-care. This was something I struggled with in 2016, between some life changes and work stressors, and it resulted in me not always feeling like my best self. I let myself get stressed out, I got sick more than usual, and I knew I needed to better manage my demands at work and home with some more self-care time. Ever felt like that before??

I know balance is truly hard to achieve— and that no one is perfect and, heck, life gets in the way sometimes. But I’d love to spend these coming months doing a little more yoga, carving out a little more time for exercise, eating a few more vegetables, and living “in the moment” a little bit more. I’d love to practice more patience, more gratitude, and rely on the things (and people) I love to calm down when I feel stressed out.

I know that I’m not always going to be on my game, and I’m definitely ok with that, but I think just being more mindful as we enter this next chapter of our lives will help me be, and feel, my best self.

 

Vegan Kale Caesar with Farro & Sourdough Croutons // pumpkinandpeanutbutter.com

 

So sticking with my goal of balance, I’m bringing you lots of healthy greens today. This Vegan Kale Caesar is simple, quick, and oh-so-satisfying as a lunch, side dish, or base for a larger meal. The best part, of course, is the tangy, salty caesar dressing! Definitely don’t be shy when you pour this creamy goodness on!

I topped my creamy greens with nutty farro (one of my favorite grains) and homemade sourdough croutons. I’m typically not a huge crouton person— but when you’re making a caesar salad, you just kind of need them. They’re super easy to throw together with what ever leftover bread you’ve got on hand, but I absolutely recommend sourdough if you have that option.

This salad is awesome as a post-new year’s detox, but is also fancy (and tasty) enough for holidays and gatherings. Definitely one of those “must pins” if you know what I mean!

Now what about you— I’d LOVE to hear, what are your favorite ways to maintain balance throughout the year, whether that be with health, nutrition, or just life stuff??

Let’s have a wonderful first week of 2017 everyone!

 

Vegan Kale Caesar with Farro & Sourdough Croutons // pumpkinandpeanutbutter.com

Vegan Kale Caesar with Farro & Sourdough Croutons // pumpkinandpeanutbutter.com

Vegan Kale Caesar with Farro & Sourdough Croutons

Serves 2-3
Cook time 25 minutes
Dietary Vegan, Vegetarian
Meal type Salad

Ingredients

  • 3 cups kale leaves, chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup dry farro
  • 1 cup water
  • 2-3 slices sourdough bread, cubed
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

for the caesar dressing

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, used a vegan brand, if needed
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Note

*caesar dressing inspired by oh she glow's crowd pleasing vegan caesar salad

Directions

Step 1
Boil 1 cup of water and add in 1/2 cup of dry farro. Turn down to medium heat and cover. Let simmer for 20-25 minutes, or until farro has reached your desired tenderness. Remove from heat.
Step 2
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toss sourdough in 1 tbsp of olive oil and salt and pepper. Spread across a baking sheet and bake for 10-15 minutes, watching to make sure they don't burn.
Step 3
While the croutons are baking, massage the kale leaves with 1 tbsp of olive oil, salt, and pepper for 5 minutes. Puree the caesar dressing ingredients in a high speed blender, then pour your desired amount on the kale. Toss to coat. Top with cooked farro and freshly baked croutons!

pumpkinandpb

Hi, I’m Liz and this is my food blog where I share my love of healthy foods and whole ingredients. You will find mostly vegetarian dishes, plenty of sweets, and lots of love from this little kitchen in Durham, North Carolina!

4 Comments

  1. Babe this looks fantastic!! Definitely fancy enough for the holidays!! But still so nourishing any time of year!! Yum! ❤️

    • Thanks Cailee!! You’re totally right— it’s SO delicious too 🙂 Happy New Year!

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