Welcome to Cook This Tonight! Every week we’ll bring you an original Plated recipe fresh off our menus to help lessen the effort of last-minute weeknight dinner planning, so you can make time for what’s worth it.
We’ve got the summer salad you’ve been waiting for. Here, we top kale with marinated white beans, fregola, juicy grapes, feta, and addictive candied almonds. Get back into the kitchen after the holiday weekend with this salad and then save the recipe for your next barbecue—the longer the kale sits, the more flavor it absorbs so it’s a perfect make-ahead dish.
White Bean, Kale, and Fregola Salad
2 15-ounce cans white beans
9 ounces red grapes
12 ounces dinosaur kale
1 cup fregola
3 tablespoons sliced almonds
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
½ teaspoon ground allspice
7 ounces feta cheese
Raw kale can be tough, so it requires a bit of TLC. If you have an extra pair of hands in the kitchen tonight, they can help massage the kale in Step 1 to soften them up and mix the salad in Step 5.
1. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil over high heat. Drain and rinse white beans. Rinse all produce. Halve lemons. Halve grapes lengthwise. Pat kale dry with paper towel, then thinly slice leaves, discarding stems. Using your hands, massage kale until beginning to soften, 1–2 minutes. Peel shallot and mince enough to yield 3 tablespoons (save remainder for another recipe).
2. In a large bowl, combine white beans, juice of 1½ lemons (save remainder to brighten a glass of water), shallot, and ½ teaspoon salt. Toss to combine, then set aside to marinate until Step 5.
3. Season boiling water generously with salt. Stir in fregola and cook until tender, 9–10 minutes. Drain and return to pot, off heat. Though fregola is shaped like a grain, it’s actually a pasta, and should be cooked like other noodles. The amount of water isn’t indicated because you’ll drain the fregola when it’s finished cooking.
4. While fregola cooks, place almonds in a small nonstick pan over medium heat. Toast, stirring constantly, until light golden, 2–3 minutes. Add brown sugar and cook, stirring, until sugar begins to melt and cling to almonds, 2–3 minutes. Add allspice and ⅛ teaspoon salt; cook, stirring vigorously, until fragrant, 1 minute more. Remove pan from heat. Transfer candied almonds to a plate to cool.
5. To bowl with marinated beans, add ¼ cup olive oil and season with pepper as desired. Gently toss to combine. Once cooked, add fregola to bowl with marinated beans, along with kale and grapes. Crumble over half of feta and toss to combine.
6. Divide white bean, kale, and fregola salad among serving plates. Crumble over remaining feta and garnish with candied almonds.
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