My name is Ashley McLaughlin and this is my blog, Edible Perspective. To learn more about my journey head on over to my about + FAQ pages. I'm thrilled that you stopped by. Enjoy!

  


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Monday
Jan212013

millet salad with sun-dried tomatoes, kale, and beans

I love collaborative dinner with friends.

Don’t get me wrong, though, I also enjoy hosting and cooking the entire meal on my own.  But there is something slightly more fun about hodgepodge-ing together an impromptu dinner with friends.

Millet Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Kale, and Beans  // edible perspective

This happened yesterday.  I get the text.  “Want to do dinner later?”  me: “YES!  What can I bring? Where? When?”

The menu quickly came together:

They had barbeque sauce.

We had tofu + tempeh.

They were going to make the veggie salad.

I was going to make the grain salad.

They had sweet potato fries.

Aaaand. Done!

I sliced + pressed the tofu and took it to their house to marinade in the barbeque sauce.  They decided on slaw, and I decided to make a hearty millet salad.  Something that would work as a side or even stand alone as a meal…with an egg on top of course.

Millet Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Kale, and Beans  // edible perspective

Next came the “what,” of what was going to be in the salad.  I believe you aware of my current enthusiasm for kale, so I’m sure you knew that would be included.  Next, a little more protein.  Beans!  Now, something with a little flavor.  Sun dried tomatoes + feta!  And to top?  A nice bright dressing finished with sliced almonds.

Millet Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Kale, and Beans  // edible perspective

This salad has crunch + chew in all the right places.  The kale was baked into bite-sized kale chips and then gently stirred in with the other ingredients.  If serving right away, they retain their crispiness and are not tough to chew through, which can sometimes be the case with raw kale.

While chomping away at our delicious dinner spread, our friend Megan said, “sun-dried tomatoes are nature's pepperoni!”

SO TRUE.  I absolutely loved that description!  Flavorful, soft, bright in color, and good in just about any savory dish.

Millet Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Kale, and Beans  // edible perspective

Print this!

Millet Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Kale, and Beans  [yields 4-6 servings]

for the salad:

  • 1 1/4 cups uncooked millet, rinsed + drained
  • 1 tablespoon sunflower oil, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups low/no sodium vegetable stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 6 cups well-chopped curly kale, stemmed + washed
  • 1/2c+ oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, chopped + blotted
  • 1c+ cannellini beans, rinsed + drained
  • 3oz feta or goat cheese, crumbled
  • salt/pepper
  • sliced almonds

*I used a rounded 1/2 cup of sun-dried tomatoes and a rounded 1 cup of beans.

for the dressing:

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon brown mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt + pepper
  1. Place all dressing ingredients in a blender and blend until fully combined.  Taste and add more salt, pepper, and/or honey if desired.  Set aside in the fridge. 
  2. Preheat your oven to 350*.
  3. Heat a large pot over medium and add 1/2 tablespoon of oil.
  4. Once hot, add the millet and toast for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until it starts to turn golden brown and smells nutty.
  5. Slowly add in the veggie stock and water. Be careful, it will spatter.
  6. Bring to a boil, stir, then cover the pot + reduce heat to simmer.  Cook for 18-20 minutes until liquid is absorbed. Do not stir while it cooks. 
  7. Remove from the heat and let sit for 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork. 
  8. Measure 4 cups of lightly packed millet and spread onto a baking sheet, then place in the fridge (~1hr) or freezer (~20min) until fully chilled.  Turn a few times to release the heat.
  9. While the millet is cooking, pat the kale dry, then place on a large baking sheet and rub 1/2 tablespoon oil and a sprinkling of salt + pepper into the kale.
  10. Bake for about 20 minutes, turning once or twice, until just starting to crisp and lightly brown.  Let cool.  Don’t over-crisp the kale or it will fall apart in the salad.
  11. Place the chilled millet, kale, beans, sun-dried tomatoes, and feta in a large mixing bowl.  Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper, then pour about 1/2 of the dressing overtop of the salad.
  12. Gently toss until well combined.  Taste and add more dressing, salt, and/or pepper if desired and toss again.
  13. Place in a serving dish and garnish with more feta and sliced almonds.  Or, store covered in the fridge until ready to serve.

Millet Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Kale, and Beans  // edible perspective

If you haven’t explored cooking with millet yet I highly recommend it.  It’s much cheaper than quinoa and offers close to the same nutritional profile.  I actually prefer it to quinoa, as it’s quite a bit heartier and nuttier in flavor. 

Millet Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Kale, and Beans  // edible perspective

Our spontaneous dinner turned into quite the success!  And can I just say that barbeque-grilled tempeh is my new favorite thing?  Oh yes it is.

Ashley

Reader Comments (24)

Grain salads are basically the only thing I ever want to eat for the rest of my life. This one is probably at the top of the list!
January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHeather @ Heather's Dish
I'm always in need of some newer inspiration with millet, and this combination hits me just right. Your friend is so spot on about the sundried tomato and pepperoni comparison too. Brilliant.
January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaura
I completely agree with you on the millet. It's such a great grain and I've been using it much more than quinoa lately. I love the concept of this salad; kale is awesome! I really like the idea of slightly baking the kale for the salad, I will have to try it!
January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHerbivore Triathlete
YES! We have a package of kale that's been awaiting our use. I think I know what I'm making! :)
This looks wonderful, yum! I have not had millet in awhile, but need to add it to my list for this. Thanks!
Yum! I just bought some sun-dried tomatoes the other day, and hadn't decided what to do with them yet. This looks like it!
January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterErica {Coffee & Quinoa}
I've only tried millet once, cooked with coconut milk, and was not sold... This dish sounds terrific, especially the combination of kale and white beans, two of my current favorites! We had an impromptu dinner party last night, too--i provided a "caesar" style kale salad.
January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLindsey @Pas de Deux Blog
you can bet your bottom I'll be making this :D
January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMeg @ A Dash of Meg
Love this! I've never cooked with millet but you've inspired me to try. I love the use of sundried tomatoes here too, and feta of course!
@Lindsey - I think the cooking method is key with millet. I haven't tried cooking millet in milk, but I have done that with brown rice and quinoa. I'll have to test it out with coconut milk soon! Glad you had a delicious and impromptu dinner party as well!

@Amanda - Let me know what you think of millet if you decide to give it a go!
January 21, 2013 | Registered CommenterAshley
This salad looks so good! I haven't had millet in way too long, and especially not combined into an excellent one-dish meal like this. :)
January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterEileen
I need to cook with millet more often. I just love when a dinner idea comes together so brilliantly!
January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLauren
yummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm
January 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterkelsey
I love your blog Ashley! Your photography is beautiful and I learned so much from your tutorials. I still feel like I have no clue what I am doing, but they were very helpful!
Keep up the good work.
@Sarah - Thanks for taking the time to say hello. I truly appreciate your sweet words. :) I'm glad to hear the tutorials were helpful! Keep at it!!
January 22, 2013 | Registered CommenterAshley
I love potluck dinners with friends too :) I've made a lot of grain/quinoa salads in my day -- they're like my favorite go-to day-to-day thing to make. But this seems like it really does have a perfect balance of textures!
January 22, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKatie @ Blonde Ambition
I need to try this. Ah-mazing.
January 23, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHeather
This looks amazing! While I'm not GF I am trying to incorporate new grains into my diet. I will definitely be trying this. Thank you!
January 23, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLisa
Dinner with friends is so rewarding and fun! I love planning fun and new recipes to share with my friends and family. This millet salad looks packed full of vitamins and delicious flavor! Very beautifully presented, too!
January 25, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJulia
FABULOUS combo!! I also love using sundried tomatoes. I use them to replace bacon in recipes that call for it (like in pasta or soups). It's a perfect vegetarian substitute!
January 27, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAlison
I have made things with millet before and hated them... but I still had some left in my cupboard I've been meaning to use up. I pinned this recipe to try, and I just made it, and OMG YUM! I may be a convert. Thanks Ashley :)
March 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaceyAnn
I made this with some modifications with what I had on hand - pintos for white beans; olives instead of cheese; roasted cherry tomatoes for sun dried tomatoes and it was really good. Recipes with millet are a little hard to find and this was a good one :)
August 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJeanette
@Jeanette - So happy to hear you enjoyed it! Love your additions!
August 6, 2014 | Registered CommenterAshley
Millet is wonderful in salads -- key is to rinse it well and drain it immediately after cooking.
November 1, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJane Barr

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