Raw Collard Greens with Crispy Squash, Grapes and Cashew-Lemon Vinaigrette

Raw Collard Greens with Crispy Squash, Grapes and Cashew-Lemon Vinaigrette

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Raw collards are highly underrated. The vinaigrette in this recipe will break down thinly shaved collard leaves slightly, infusing them with flavor while retaining just the right amount of crunch! To make this salad a one-dish meal, try throwing in some shredded roast chicken or grilled steak.

Ingredients

  • 1 splash olive oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 bunch collard greens, stems removed and leaves sliced very thin
  • 2 scallions, sliced
  • 1/2 cup halved red grapes
  • 1 small Delicata squash

Vinaigrette

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup just boiled water
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tablespoons herbs of choice (soft herbs work best: think dill, parsley, cilantro or tarragon)
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1/3 cup olive oil

Directions

Heat oven to 400° F.

Pour the just boiled water over the cashews and let them sit for 15 minutes while you prepare the squash.

Using a vegetable peeler, peel the skin from the ridges on the squash from top to bottom. Trim off each end, then cut the squash in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to scrape out and discard the seeds. Set each squash half cut-side down, then slice each half into 1/4-inch-thick half-moons. Toss the squash half-moons with a splash of oil and a pinch of salt, and arrange on a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake the squash for 12 minutes, then flip and bake a further 5 minutes. They should be golden-brown and crispy by this point. Set them aside to cool.

While the squash bakes, make the vinaigrette. Add the cashews, their soaking liquid and all other vinaigrette ingredients to the blender. Blend on high until fully emulsified and no chunks of cashews remain. Taste, and add more salt and/or lemon, if necessary. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Combine the shaved collards with a bit of the vinaigrette in a mixing bowl. Use your hands to make sure each leaf is coated with vinaigrette. Then mix in the grapes, scallions and crispy squash. Season to taste and serve.