Everything I learned about eating right, I learned from my parents. In fact, I think my mom and dad were the original “health nuts.” When I was growing up, my mom cooked low-fat, nutritious meals, and our family dinner table looked like a rainbow—filled with plates of red, orange, green and yellow fruits and veggies. Except for my mom’s favorite lace tablecloth, there was very little white on the table, unless it was white-meat chicken or turkey.
With Thanksgiving—the biggest meal day of the year—just days away, the cliché “You are what you eat” certainly carries a lot of weight. One of my favorite ways to make Turkey Day festive, healthy and skin-friendly is to take a cue from my mom and prepare a rainbow of recipes featuring richly colored organic fruits and vegetables.
One of the technicolor side dishes I’ll be feeding my family and friends this Thanksgiving is an antioxidant-rich kale salad with pumpkin seed dressing. The recipe is adapted one of my favorite cookbooks, Eat to Live by Joel Fuhrman, M.D. (see below). It’s full of vitamins A and C and betacarotene … truly a superfood.
This Thanksgiving, I encourage you to get colorful in your kitchen. By doing so, you’ll be nourishing your skin and the skin of your guests as well. I hope you have a fabulous and festive holiday.
Crazy for Kale Salad with Dijon Pumpkin Seed Dressing
(Adapted from Eat to Live by Joel Fuhrman, M.D.)
¼ cup raw pumpkin seeds
1 cup water
¼ cup lemon juice
1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp. no-salt seasoning blend, adjusted to taste
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
½ tsp. garlic powder
4 Medjool or 8 regular (Deglet Noor) dates, pitted
1 bunch kale, tough stems and center ribs removed, finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 medium onion, diced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cucumber, chopped
½ cup pine nuts (Mediterranean pine nuts if available, or sliced almonds may be substituted)
½ cup raisins or currants (omit for diabetic or weight-loss diets)
2 Tbsp. hulled hemp seeds
Bake pumpkin seeds at 225 degrees for 15 minutes or until lightly toasted. Place pumpkin seeds and remaining dressing ingredients in a high-powered blender and blend until smooth. Add more water as needed to reach desired consistency.
Place chopped kale in a large bowl and “massage” 1 cup of dressing (or more if desired) into chopped kale leaves. Let the kale marinate in the dressing for 10 to 15 minutes to allow flavors to soak into the leaves.
Add remaining salad ingredients to the bowl of marinated kale and mix well.
Do you have a favorite skin-friendly recipe you’ll be preparing for family and friends this Thanksgiving? Share it by commenting below.