Its Yoga Week in DC so take a moment to chill and say Namaste! There is no better time than spring to focus on reconnecting our bodies with our minds and start anew. The practice of yoga has evolved over time and has an ancient history with roots in spiritual discipline. Modern yoga can encompass five major areas including proper relaxation, exercise, breathing, diet, and meditation or clearing of the mind. If you are not an actual yoga practitioner you can still benefit from the basic principles of yoga and derive its benefits. Here at Katic’s Korner, relaxation, breathing and mindfulness practices are all encouraged as part of a healthy lifestyle. Adding a glass of wine to your dinner routine can slow down the pace and take the stress levels down a couple notches.
I chose a recipe that utilizes simple ingredients that are in season now and can be found in all supermarkets or your local farmers market during these next few weeks. Kale is an interesting green as many people think of it as a fall or winter vegetable. It is grown in the spring and can be more tender this time of year than the dense varieties you see later in the season. Most people love a Caesar salad and this recipe will lighten up the ingredients and eliminate the need to use a raw egg for the dressing. This salad will increase your nutrient intake, give you the energy you need to get through your yoga class but won’t weigh you down for the perfect downward dog.
You can add some grilled shrimp or chicken to make this an entree salad or use as a side to any main course.
The spirit within me salutes the spirit within you. Namaste………
To celebrate Yoga Week events and for information about Yoga on the Mall this Saturday visit www.dccy.org or on Facebook at DC Yoga Week.
Recipe for Kale Caesar Salad
1/3 cup Greek non-fat yogurt
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon anchovy paste
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons grated fresh Parmesan cheese
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 bunch kale, washed, dried, and sliced into thin pieces
Homemade croutons using ciabatta bread* or packaged croutons
Grated fresh Parmesan cheese
In a mixing bowl, stir together yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, anchovy paste and Dijon mustard. Gradually whisk in olive oil until combined. Stir in freshly ground black pepper, to taste. Set aside.
Place prepared kale in salad bowl. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese. Drizzle on salad dressing and toss gently to coat leaves. Toss in croutons. Garnish salad with a bit more fresh Parmesan and serve.
*Note: To make your own croutons, slice some ciabatta or sourdough bread into small cubes. Toss with some olive oil and coarse salt to coat and bake in a 375 degree oven until bread is dry and crispy. This should only take about 7-10 minutes. Let cool. Packaged croutons are fine if your time is limited, but homemade ones will kick this salad to a new level!
Wine Pairing: Anton Bauer Grüner Veltliner Gmörk
Grüner Veltliner is Austria’s signature grape. It tends to be higher in acidity than many white grape varieties and express notes of lime, grapefruit or lemons. The high levels of acidity are what make Grüner a perfect pair for any salad. Since most salad dressings contain vinegar or lemon juice it is important to pair the acid in the dressing with the acid in the wine. Many wines don’t stand up to salad dressings because they don’t contain enough acidity. Grüner will also be full enough and more rounded in texture and weight to balance out the creaminess of the yogurt in this recipe.
The Anton Bauer Grüner Veltliner exhibits classic Grüner characters of clean citrus and granny smith apples. It displays bright acidity on the palate with full fruit flavors. You can’t go wrong with this wine during the spring season. It will pair with any salad or the green vegetables on display at your nearest market.
It is easy to find in many wine stores or supermarkets in your area and is priced reasonably at around $12.99 a bottle.