Winter Salads Made From Local Vancouver Vegetables

Three great winter salads that make the most of local winter vegetables.

Credit: Flickr / H Nau

Dark, leafy kale salad to refresh winter meals

Winter salads make for a great break from heavy roasts

Melting snow always makes me think it’s spring. So every time Vancouver blankets itself in snow—and denudes itself the following day—I grow tired of my roasted yam-and-squash mash and long for a refreshing salad.

Here are three great winter salads that make the most of local winter vegetables. My favourite is the kale salad, perhaps because it’s the most salady and easiest to make. The beet salad is wonderfully bright, and the red cabbage is fantastic because it gets better with age (well, to a point).

“Raw” Kale Salad

1 large bunch of kale
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 oranges, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
2 tbsp pumpkin seeds

Cut the spine, and any other large fibrous pieces, out of the kale and chop it into bite-sized pieces. Make sure the kale is completely dry. Place the kale into a salad bowl and gently massage the olive oil and salt into the leaves until they are fully coated and start to soften.

Add the cilantro and lemon juice and toss until well combined. Peel the oranges and cut them into suprêmes. Mix the oranges into the kale and top with the pumpkin seeds. 

Video: How to cut citrus fruit into suprêmes



Beet-Carrot-Parsnip Salad

6 medium beets
3 large carrots, cubed
3 large parsnips, cubed
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 small clove of garlic
3 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp apple juice
1 tsp Dijon mustard
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Boil the beets in a saucepan until fork-tender (about 30–40 minutes). Rinse, peel and cube the beets; set aside in a bowl. In another saucepan, cook the cubed carrots and parsnips until fork-tender (5 minutes). Drain and set aside in another bowl. For the dressing, combine the remaining ingredients in a blender.

Divide the dressing evenly between the beets and the carrots and parsnips and toss to coat evenly. Combine the two bowls gently just before serving, trying to maintain colour separation.

Red Cabbage Salad

1/2 head red cabbage
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup red wine vinegar (be generous)
3 tbsp sugar
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp tumeric
1/4 tsp black pepper
3/4 tsp onion powder

This salad needs to marinate for a long time. It’s good after 48 hours, but even better after 4 or 5 days.

Shred half of the cabbage finely and the other half coarsely. Place in a large bowl. 

Combine remaining ingredients for the dressing. Toss the dressing with the cabbage and place in a covered container in the fridge for at least 48 hours or until cabbage turns a rich red and softens.

Serve with local seafood on the side

Keep things light by serving your salads with local seafood. At the moment in Vancouver you can find clams, Pacific cod, Dungeness crab, Pacific flounder/sole, mussels, Pacific oysters, jumbo prawns, sablefish, scallops and west coast shrimp.