May 09, 2012

Mango Millet & Kale Salad


As I've mentioned before, one of my favourite things to make over the past year has been quinoa because I find it so easy to work with and there's so much you can do with it!  I can always throw together a quick and easy quinoa salad using whatever ingredients I have in the fridge and pantry and the leftovers make a great lunch to bring to the office too.

Lately, I've been hearing more about other grains like barley, buckwheat, farro, and kasha.  I haven't ventured into cooking with any of those yet, but I'm working my way there!

As a first step, I bought a small amount of millet from the bulk bin recently and I've used it in a couple of salads.  Millet is a small grain that looks like tiny yellow beads and it can be prepared in the same way as quinoa.

I haven't tried it on just its own yet, but I've discovered that cooking a combination of millet and quinoa together makes a nice fluffy, thick mixture that is a great base for a variety of fruits and veggies!



My favourite millet creation so far is this mango millet and kale salad that I adapted slightly from the blog Healthful Pursuit.  I made a few changes to the recipe, like using kale instead of spinach because I thought the kale would hold up nicely for leftovers.  I also left out the onion and added some diced cucumber, pepitas and cilantro in addition to the mango, almonds and cranberries.

I loved the combination of the sweet fruit and fresh cucumber with the soft millet and crunchy almonds.  The best part about this salad though was the lemon poppyseed dressing - it was the perfect balance of sweet and tangy and went so well with the rest of the ingredients. I also liked the way the poppy seeds dotted each grain of millet!

This salad is a nice light and fresh dish that's perfect for Spring. It's also a great recipe to make a big batch of and then store the leftovers in the fridge to bring for lunches throughout the week, since it keeps well (as long as your mango isn't already overly ripe). I actually have a potluck lunch coming up next week with the theme of "Spring Fling", so this would be the perfect dish to bring!

And for more tasty and gluten-free salad ideas, check out this round-up from Healthful Pursuit, where I got this recipe!



Mango Millet & Kale Salad
Adapted from Healthful Pursuit

1/2 cup dry millet
1/4 cup dry quinoa
1.5 cups water
2 cups shredded kale
1/2 cup diced cucumber
1 cup diced ripe mango
1/4 cup slivered almonds
2 tbsp pepitas
1/4 cup dried cranberries
2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Dressing
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tbsp raw honey (could substitute agave for a vegan version)
1 tbsp honey mustard (could substitute dijon mustard)
1/2 tbsp poppy seeds
1/8 tsp herbamare

Combine the millet, quinoa and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 10-15 minutes, until the water is absorbed.  Remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes, then remove lid and fluff with a fork.  Place in a large bowl and set aside.

Meanwhile, prepare the kale, cucumber and mango and set aside.  Prepare the dressing by whisking all the ingredients together in a small bowl.

Heat a small skillet over medium heat and add the almonds and pepitas. Toast for a few minutes, until the nuts are lightly browned and fragrant.   Transfer to the bowl with the millet mixture and stir to mix.

Add the kale to the millet while it is still warm and stir to mix thoroughly.  Next, pour the dressing into the bowl and stir again (you can even use your hands to massage the dressing into the kale if you want it to be a bit softer).

Add the cucumber, mango, cranberries and cilantro and toss to combine.

Chill in the fridge, or serve at room temperature.

Makes 3 large servings, or more as a side dish.


This was submitted to Wellness Weekend at Diet, Dessert, and Dogs

16 comments:

  1. Yum! This looks great! I've yet to try millet in a salad. I will definitely have to try this one. I love cranberries, mango and pepitas in salad. :)

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    1. Thanks, I love those things in salads too :) And now that I've tried millet, I should make more of an effort to try more new grains!

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  2. Sometimes I feel like I could eat quinoa with anything.... but I try to mix up my grains anyhow. Diversity is the spice of life! I am loving this combo of mango, kale and millet! Yum!

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    1. That's true...it took me so long just to try quinoa, so I should learn my lesson and branch out sooner! I love the asparagus and lemon combo with quinoa this time of year too!

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  3. mango mango mango! ;-) i might have to make this very soon with wheat berries or farro... but now i want to try millet too!

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    1. I thought you would like this too! I'm sure you could mix up the grains, as long as they will absorb the dressing well

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  4. The Pepitas are such a great addition! I LOVE cooking quinoa and millet together so so good - I actually have leftover quinoa mixed veggie bowl for lunch tonight plus extra for dinner tonight :)

    oh and the addition of almonds and cranberries - love it!

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    1. I think you are the one who convinced me to try millet...first your gingerbread muffins and then that asparagus tart! So I'm sure you would love this recipe too :)

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  5. Yum...this looks great! I love combining different grains to get some different textures and tastes in one dish! Oh, and mango...so good in a kale salad. Great pictures too!

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    1. Thanks! It helped that the millet and quinoa could just cook together for the same amount of time, so it was easy to combine them. I love mango and kale together too :)

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  6. What a great combination of ingredients!! I am very intrigued. I have sadly never tried quinoa, but it is definitely on my to-do list!

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    1. Thanks! It took me a while to try quinoa too, but once I did I started eating it more and more! You should definitely try it soon :)

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  7. Yum- great combination of mango and kale. I imagine the crunch and slight bitterness of the kale would pair wonderfully with the soft, sweetness of the mango. Thanks for sharing this!

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    1. Thanks Meghan ! The mango was definitely my favourite part of the salad, but I loved the mix of textures

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  8. This turned out so well at the potluck today! Loved the spinach version but kale looks good too!

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    1. I'm glad everyone liked it too! I liked both versions but I think I still prefer the kale because it didn't get as wilted as the spinach.

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