Baby kale and roasted cauliflower are drizzled with a creamy tahini dressing and sprinkled with pomegranate seeds for a beautiful winter salad!
I have quite a fondness for roasted cauliflower. I can easily eat the whole pan. (OK, I did eat the whole pan here. All of it. Don’t judge.)
And while I’m happy to have it all on its own, sometimes I round it out as a side dish by serving it over a bed of baby kale, drizzled with a delicious tahini dressing — that takes just minutes to throw together — and sprinkled all over with pomegranate seeds.
All together, this is some winter salad loveliness, my friends. So many gorgeous flavors and textures.
Soft, but sturdy baby kale leaves, tender roasted cauliflower with crunchy bits all around the outside, all studded with small, sweet pomegranate seeds and a generous drizzle of a lemony tahini vinaigrette.
Impressive but oh so easy.
The pomegranate seeds here are like little jewels, bringing some sparkle and dazzle to the salad. They add lightness and sweetness and contrast so well with the creamy, rich tahini dressing. Sprinkle on as may as you like.
You can buy them in containers as seeds, but that’s pretty expensive. I buy the actual pomegranate - still not cheap but they go on sale throughout the winter - and then remove the seeds myself. If you’ve never done it, it’s really easy and actually pretty fun.
How to seed a pomegranate:
- Squish the outside of the pomegranate all over a bit to get the seeds on the inside to loosen up. Next, use a knife to make a ½-inch deep cut around the middle of the pomegranate all the way around. Then pry apart the two sides.
- Once it’s opened, work with each half, holding it upside over a bowl and banging on the outside of the pomegranate with a wooden spoon. Keep banging all around and over the top of it until most of the seeds have come falling out. This is the fun part. Bang, bang, bang. Whack, whack, whack. (No, I’m not stressed. Why do you ask?)
- If some of the white flesh part of the fruit comes out too, don’t worry, just pick it out and discard it. I like to rinse the seeds in cold water after I’m done, and then dry them really well and store them in the fridge.
Pomegranate seeds are great to add to salads and I even like them sprinkled over my Greek yogurt in the morning. They’d be delicious in a martini or some champagne, too. Just sayin’.
Also, you can store extra pomegranate seeds in the freezer so you don’t waste any.
But first, sprinkle them all over this delicious kale and roasted cauliflower salad and be prepared to devour it.
For the salad:
- 1 large head of cauliflower, washed and cut into small florets
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- 8 oz. raw baby kale (or a mix of baby kale, spinach and chard)
- ½ cup pomegranate seeds
For the creamy tahini dressing:
- ¼ cup tahini (see notes)
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice (from about one lemon)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Hot water, as needed to get it to the right consistency (see notes)
- Preheat the oven to 400.
- Mix the cauliflower florets with olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder and red pepper flakes, if using. Spread in an even layer on a baking sheet and roast at 400 for 30-35 minutes, stirring once.
- Meanwhile, make the dressing. Add all of the ingredients to a small jar, cover and shake well to combine. Add splashes of hot water, about a teaspoon at a time as needed, to thin the dressing out and get it to your desired consistency.
- To plate the salad, spread the baby kale out onto a serving plate or individual plates. Top with the warm roasted cauliflower and drizzle all over with the dressing. Sprinkle with pomegranate seeds (about 2-3 tablespoons per person) and serve!
Depending on the thickness of your tahini, the dressing can be a little thick. I add a splash at a time (a teaspoon or so) of hot water from the faucet to help loosen it and get it to drizzling consistency.
Tahini, if you aren't familiar, is made from ground sesame seeds and can usually be found near the peanut butter in your grocery store. It’s creamy, rich and nutty and a key ingredient in hummus.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 211Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 717mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 8gSugar: 9gProtein: 8g