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Make Chef Greg’s Delightful Quinoa, Kale & Bacon Salad for Yourself!

Guests of Crescent Spur often tell us that a big draw for them is our food. As such, we’ve asked our own Chef Greg to pen a multi-part blog series, documenting one of his favourite meals. In part one of How to Feed a Heli-Skier, he’ll begin with a salad—and what a salad! Take it away, Greg…

Hiya! Chef Greg here. I’m the chef with Crescent Spur Heli-Skiing and over the season, I’m going to be sharing some of my favourite recipes that I like to serve heli-skiers and boarders. After a full day of skiing, our guests are not only hungry but they are also looking for a meal that is delicious, filling and sophisticated.

I’ve chosen these recipes for several reasons: the ingredients are pretty easy to find over the winter months and the preparation is straight-forward—so even if you’re not an expert chef, your guests will think you’ve hired a caterer. Enjoy!

Quinoa, Kale & Bacon Salad

Ingredients:
1 cup quinoa
1 cup apple juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 slices bacon, cut into inch strips*
1/2 medium onion (cut into thin slices)
1/2 apple (Granny Smith cut into thin wedges)
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 bunch kale (about 7 – 9 leaves cut into inch strips)
1/4 cup hazelnut or walnut pieces

Method:

  • In a small pot, toast the quinoa until golden brown over medium heat.
  • Add 1/2 cup of apple juice and 1/2 cup of water, with a pinch or two of salt. Bring to a boil, turn heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. When done, let sit for 5 minutes, drizzle a tiny bit of olive oil over the top, fluff it up… Let cool.
  • In a medium (thick bottomed) pan, fry the bacon until crispy, over medium heat. Set bacon crisps aside, reserve half of the bacon fat in the pan for the next step.
  • Add the onion to the bacon pan. Over medium high heat, fry the onions until a little colour develops. Add the apple wedges. Toss apples and onions in the pan to coat for a couple minutes.
  • Quickly add the other 1/2 cup of apple juice, apple cider vinegar, and Dijon mustard.
  • Let this mixture reduce for a couple of minutes, then add the kale, bacon, and nuts. Turn off the heat right away… you do not want to cook the kale!
  • In a decent size bowl, toss the quinoa and everything together. Serve in a pyramid shaped mound, making sure to have a few of the apple wedges on top.

* If you would like to make this a vegetarian dish, leave out the bacon and sauté the onions and apples in oil. Toss in 1/4 cup of feta cheese with the quinoa.