Cheryl Slocum Cheryl Slocum
October 23, 2014

Fall's red fruits offer the sweetest rewards.

Though you can get grapes year-round, now is peak season for late summer's red seedless varieties. Flames are round and mildly sweet; oval-shaped Crimsons are juicy and crisp; Scarlet Royals' elongated berries have thick skin; and tightly clustered Rubys have a mild flavor. You'll taste the difference this time of year, when these fruits are at their sweetest. Frozen, they make an addictive snack; fresh, they complement most cheeses, from pungent blue to mild Brie. We roast them to bring out deep, rich, grapy flavor, then toss with earthy kale and salty Manchego cheese in a memorable salad.

Chicken and Roasted Grape SaladHands-on: 15 min. Total: 1 hr. 40 min.

Roasting mellows the tartness, deepens the flavor, and intensifies the sweetness of fresh grapes. The result? A midpoint between a raisin and a juicy fresh grape.

3 cups seedless red grapesCooking spray3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil2 teaspoons finely chopped rosemary6 cups cut prewashed kale, stemmed2 tablespoons white wine vinegar¼ teaspoon coarse sea salt4 cups shredded skinless, boneless rotisserie chicken breast2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice4 green onions, thinly sliced2 celery stalks, thinly diagonally sliced2 ounces Manchego cheese, shaved

1. Preheat oven to 325°.

2. Arrange grapes in a single layer on a wire rack set in a jelly-roll pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 325° for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until slightly shriveled. Cool on wire rack.

3. While grapes bake, combine oil and rosemary in a small microwave-safe dish; microwave at HIGH 40 seconds. Remove from microwave, and let stand 20 minutes. Strain through a sieve into a bowl; discard solids.

4. Place kale in a large bowl; massage kale with hands until tender and dark green. Add strained oil, vinegar, and salt; toss to coat. Add roasted grapes, chicken, lemon juice, green onions, and celery; toss. Top with cheese.

SERVES 6 (serving size: about 1¼ cups)CALORIES 342; FAT 14.3g (sat 4.3g, mono 6.4g, poly 1.5g); PROTEIN 34g; CARB 22g; FIBER 3g; CHOL 98mg; IRON 2mg; SODIUM 541mg; CALC 255mg

 

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