Everyday recipes for the paleo autoimmune protocol

Pomegranate Purslane Salad

Pomegranate Purslane Salad

A colorful salad for late summer, with a few unusual ingredients.  I’m so happy to introduce you, if you haven’t already met, to purslane.  Purslane is technically a weed, and it can grow anywhere in the world where there’s a long enough growing season.  It can tolerate both drought and poor soil, and grows on most continents, including Australia!  Purslane has a lemony taste and a meaty, succulent-like texture.  Purslane also contains more omega-3 fatty acids than any other plant, making it a great choice for AIP.

Purslane can be eaten cooked or raw.  All parts of the plant can be eaten.  In this recipe, I’ve cut smaller sprigs off the main stem of the plant, and put them whole and raw into my salad.  Yum!  I was able to find purslane at my local produce market, but if you are not able to source it, you could leave it out of this salad.  Alternately, you could replace it with a thick sort of AIP-friendly sprout.

The next unusual ingredient in this salad is a pomegranate.  I imagine you have come across whole pomegranates, or their seeds, being sold in grocery stores and health food markets.  The whole fruits can be intimidating to process, but I have a couple tips to share with you to make it easier.  I’m going to break down my favorite pomegranate-opening method into discrete steps here.

You will need a medium-sized bowl filled with water, old clothes or an apron, and a knife.  Pomegranates are a bit messy!

  1. Your pomegranate has five subtle ridges running from top to bottom.  Use your knife to make slits in the pomegranate’s skin along each of the five ridges.  Be sure to cut through the rind, but not into the fruit beneath.
  2. Hold the pomegranate under water in your bowl with both hands.  Work your thumbs into one of the slits you cut until you have a firm handle on the fruit, then pull the fruit apart into two pieces.
  3. Use the remaining slits to help you pull the fruit apart into its five component wedges.
  4. Working one wedge at a time, separate the seeds of the fruit from the white pith.  As you do this, the seeds will sink to the bottom of the bowl, and the pith will float.
  5. Use your hand to skim all the white pith off the top of the water.  You can throw this away or recycle it.
  6. Pour the rest of the bowl through a strainer; you should be left with the seeds, ready to eat!

Well.  Now that the hard part is done, you’re ready to toss together this salad!  It’s a very pretty affair, and its unusual ingredients would make it a fun dish to serve to company.  If you are unable to find a brand of AIP-friendly sausage near you, and don’t wish to make your own, bacon would also be a good choice for some protein and fat in this salad.  You can use any dressing you like on this salad, I kept it to a very minimal balsamic vinaigrette. 

Bon appetit!


Pomegranate Purslane Salad
  1. Small bunch kale
  2. Small bunch purslane
  3. 1 Tbsp olive oil
  4. pinch salt
  5. 2 sausages
  6. 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
  7. 1 sweet potato
  8. 1/4 c radish, broccoli, or alfalfa sprouts
  1. 1 Tbsp olive oil
  2. 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Cut the sweet potato into small cubes, toss with 1tsp of the olive oil and a pinch of salt, and roast for 1 hour until soft.
  2. Remove the thickest stems from the kale. Chop the kale into small pieces. In a bowl, mix the kale with a few drops of olive oil and a pinch of salt. With your hands, firmly massage the oil into the kale until the leaves become tender and translucent.
  3. Chop the sausages up roughly and brown them in a skillet.
  4. To make the dressing, add the olive oil in a slow stream to the vinegar as you beat with a whisk or a fork.
  5. Cut the purslane off of the thickest stem and into small sprigs. Toss the purslane, kale, pomegranate seeds, sausage, sweet potato, and sprouts together in a bowl, and serve with the dressing.
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