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Kale Salad with Roasted Fingerling Potatoes, White Beans, and Warm Bacon Dressing is a hearty meal in itself or a great side dish for just about anything.
The thing about kale is that I love it so much I could eat it every single day in about a thousand different ways. From soups to casseroles to baked eggs and of course salads galore (my favorite of which is this beauty, but that has been known to change so don’t quote me on that), I find myself always sneaking it into something.
I find potatoes in general and fingerlings in particular to be one of the many stellar additions to a kale salad. If you’re not familiar with fingerling potatoes, they are about the size of a finger and sometimes have a knobby or lumpy shape. Their skin is delicate (no need to peel them), and they hold up well to roasting. Because of their unique shape, I prefer not to cube them, but rather to leave them whole or just slice them in half lengthwise if they’re somewhat large. Not only are they easy and convenient to prepare, but they are a blank canvas in terms of possibilities, and they are gorgeous in salads! (Get more potato inspiration on the Potato Goodness website and like Potato Goodness on Facebook.)
I like turning to potatoes in the colder fall and winter months when I want a heartier meal. Roasted fingerlings boost the nutrition in this recipe, and also add subtle nutty flavor. White beans and a bit of bacon and cheese bump up the protein content, making this salad filling enough to work as a stand-alone meal. Of course it’s also lovely as a side dish paired with chicken or steak.
The interesting thing about this salad is that the dressing is warm, made with hot bacon drippings, apple cider vinegar, honey, and a touch of Dijon. I like to toss it with the kale while it’s still hot, so the kale gets ever-so-slightly wilted. Served with still warm roasted fingerlings, crispy bacon, and creamy cheese crumbles, this salad is a work of art.
What’s your favorite fall salad?
- 24 oz (1½ lbs/680 g) fingerling potatoes, washed and halved lengthwise if large
- 1½ tablespoons olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- 4 slices turkey bacon, chopped into ½-inch pieces
- 1 bunch kale, rinsed, thick stems removed, and chopped
- 1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 (15.5 oz/440g) can no-salt-added small white beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 oz (30 g) Stella Fontinella cheese, crumbled (see Note)
- Preheat the oven to 425F. Toss the potatoes, oil, and black pepper together and spread out on a large baking tray. Roast until the potatoes are tender inside and starting to crisp outside, about 30 minutes, tossing once halfway through.
- Meanwhile, add the bacon to a medium-large skillet over medium-high heat and cook until crispy, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- While the bacon cooks, toss together the kale, red onion, lemon juice, and salt in a large bowl and let it sit.
- When the bacon is crispy, use a slotted spoon to transfer it to a bowl. There should be about 2 to 3 tablespoons of bacon drippings in the skillet (if there is more than that, discard the extra); to the drippings, add the vinegar, honey, Dijon, and black pepper. Turn the heat down to low and whisk until combined; remove from heat.
- While the dressing is still hot, carefully pour it onto the kale mixture and toss to combine. Toss in the white beans.
- Pour the kale mixture onto a serving platter. Top with the roasted potatoes, crisped bacon, and crumbled cheese. Serve.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.