Delicata, Pomegranate Kale Salad with Lardon Dressing


Delicata, Pomegranate Kale Salad with Lardon Dressing

Last winter it felt like every single restaurant I went to there was some sort of kale salad on the menu. Usually some sort of hard cheese was involved like pecorino or Parmesan. There was sometimes fruit on it. And it was always massaged. I want a massage. Good gracious, enough with the dang kale, man. The last thing this universe needs is another kale salad. And here I am throwing another kale salad in your super cute face. But, this kale salad is really good. And there’s lardon dressing involved. I mean…bacon fat dressing, c’mon!

This lardon situation was supposed to be guanciale, which is my current love, but when I headed to my local hipster super artisinal neighborhood market and they didn’t have it, I turned to bacon. I figured if I couldn’t get it, you probably wouldn’t be able to find it either. So, instead we have this bacon/lardon situation. This salad is as fall as fall can get. There’s fennel, roasted delicata squash, pomegranate and sturdy kale. The kale can easily be swapped out for another kind of green, it just needs to be able to stand up to the hot, warm dressing and not wilt and wither away.

Delicata, Pomegranate Kale Salad with Lardon Dressing

This salad is easy with a capital E. The lardons are fried up in a pan, removed and then to that fat the dressing is made. A heavy splash of red wine vinegar, lemon juice, lots of pepper and a garlic clove are added to make up the dressing. The mixture is poured over the kale and massaged and tossed until the kale softens a bit. It’s a winner of a salad.

Delicata, Pomegranate Kale Salad with Lardon Dressing

Delicata, Pomegranate Kale Salad with Lardon Dressing
Delicata, Pomegranate Kale Salad with Lardon Dressing

In other news, a few of you recommended The New Girl and I resisted. I’m a brat. I dunno. Sometimes Zooey Deschanel kinda irks me. But in this show she’s completely won me over. I’m hooked. I’m still on season one and am surprised that I actually LOL.

And in other OTHER news, tomorrow is Amelia’s birthday. She’s officially a year old. Remember when she looked like this?! I just shed a mama tear. Well, there might be a kewl little party hat involved. And maybe a doggie birthday cake. Get excited. I know I am! I’m sorry I’m strange, hopefully you are too!

Delicata, Pomegranate Kale Salad with Lardon Dressing

Delicata, Pomegranate Kale Salad with Lardon Dressing


  • 1 small delicata squash, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 1 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 slices thickly-cut bacon, sliced into 1-inch-by-1-inch cubes
  • 1/2 fennel bulb, thinly sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 lemon
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 3 cups chopped kale
  • 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds, from 1/2 small pomegranate


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Rub the delicata squash with olive oil and sprinkle them with a few pinches of salt. Transfer to the oven to roast for 15-20 minutes, until tender when poked with the tines of a fork.
  • To a small pan, heat the olive oil. (This may seem like a lot of olive oil but we'll be using it for the dressing.) Add the bacon and cook until crispy and lightly golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to a bed of paper towels to drain.
  • Turn the heat to low and add the slices of fennel and cook until lightly sautéed, about 2-3 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add the garlic clove, red wine vinegar, juice from 1/2 lemon, a few pinches of salt and pepper. Cook for 1-2 minutes, until the garlic is fragrant. Add the kale to medium-sized bowl, pour the dressing on top and massage the kale salad for about a minute. You might feel a little silly doing this--don't worry! Transfer the salad to a serving bowl or plate. Arrange the delicata squash, fennel and lardon all fancy like. And then top with a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds.


*It'll serve 2 as a main course salad and will serve 4 as just a starter
Nutrition Facts
Delicata, Pomegranate Kale Salad with Lardon Dressing
Amount Per Serving (2 g)
Calories 0
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @acozykitchen on Instagram and hashtag it #acozykitchen
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  • Reply Belinda @themoonblushbaker October 16, 2013 at 1:56 am

    Happy birthday to Ameila! I hope you cook her up a great birthday cake ( I am sure you will with your talent)
    The combo of bacon, kale and pumpkin is like the new Caesar salad ( but better because kale is super healhtly right?) Stunning pictures, the slices of squash picture is my favourite.

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme October 16, 2013 at 10:16 am

      Oh her b-day cake is coming to the blog. There will be doggie frosting, too!

  • Reply Elisa @ Insalata di Sillabe October 16, 2013 at 5:35 am

    Oh my, the colors of this salad are simply gorgeous and so festive! I guess this would be a crowd pleaser for Christmas lunch…I know, we’re still just in October but this salad totally reminded me of the holidays!

    xo, Elisa

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme October 16, 2013 at 10:17 am

      UGH. This year I’m being so gross. I already know what my holiday cards are going to be like and the Christmas tree I want has already been scouted. MAKE IT STOP!

  • Reply Abby @ The Frosted Vegan October 16, 2013 at 5:37 am

    Ok I’ll take a trough of this (minus the lardon obvi for me)+ New Girl marathon+ I wanna squeeze your cute puppy!! Happy Birthday to your fur baby!

  • Reply dishing up the dirt October 16, 2013 at 8:10 am

    This is an absolutely stunning salad! BTW I was late to The New Girl too and now I’m hooked!

  • Reply cindy October 16, 2013 at 8:40 am

    this salad is SO pretty! and, I have to admit, I struggle with kale. I mean, I’m cool with it in soups and stuff…but I have yet to fall in love, despite how much I try. Let me love you, kale!

    Also, I love New Girl…and I love the She and Him Christmas Album, but I totally think Zooey’s singing voice sounds like a muppet. Like, when I hear her sing my brain pictures her as a muppet from Sesame Street.

  • Reply Sophie @ dinnersforwinners October 16, 2013 at 9:24 am

    You’re not strange! I like to get my pup a special treat when it’s his birthday, too 🙂 He will not wear hats, though! And I do not get sick of kale salads, so this looks GREAT! I know how nutritious kale is and also how much I enjoy it — no matter what salad I’ve thrown together for my lunch at work, I almost always add some ribboned kale because it holds up so well. Then I feel EVEN stronger than Popeye. Hurray!

    I was way late to New Girl and my husband and I both ended up loving it! At first I thought there was no way adorable Zooey would be able to act awkward and “uncool”, but Nick totally won me over 🙂 I think that comment from Cindy about Muppet-Zooey singing is hilariously accurate 🙂

  • Reply Francesca October 16, 2013 at 9:32 am

    Happy Birthday to Amelia and I would eat (only) this kale!

  • Reply Sara/Matchbox Kitchen October 16, 2013 at 11:47 am

    The world can always use more kale salads. I love kale!

  • Reply holly ; the hobbit kitchen October 16, 2013 at 12:35 pm

    this looks gorgeous! i’m totally with you on the whole “who needs another kale salad?” thing, and yet i keep making them all the time as well! and this really does look lovely – anything with lardons on is bound to be good. great post as always, and i hope celebrations for amelia’s birthday go well! 🙂

    the hobbit kitchen x

  • Reply Allie @ 6000 Miles to Home October 16, 2013 at 1:30 pm

    that salad is GORGEOUS – what a cute autumn dish. Can’t wait to try it! p.s. I felt the same way about new girl and Zooey – but now I’m addicted. Those boys are just too hilarious.

  • Reply Kris October 16, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    FYI – no link to the baby amelia pic!

  • Reply Sarah | The Sugar Hit October 16, 2013 at 6:42 pm

    I definitely am too! And that bacon fat dressing? YEAH! That’s the business.

  • Reply Nicole October 16, 2013 at 9:04 pm

    This salad is too beautiful! Also really loving delicata squash right now. Fall everything is too good.

    Is it a stupid question to ask how to massage kale? Does that really look like what I think it does?

  • Reply Madonna/aka/Ms. Lemon October 16, 2013 at 10:27 pm

    I just discovered delicata squash. I stuffed them with Italian sausage and topped with bread crumbs. It was so delicious, but I think yours will be wonderful. I was thinking kale and walnuts, but now I see all kinds of possibilities.

  • Reply Christina @ The Beautiful Balance October 17, 2013 at 11:56 pm

    I absolutely love that you’ve used delicata squash. I can’t get enough of it during the Fall and can’t believe I have never thought to throw it in a salad. I can’t wait to try this! I will have to substitute the lardon dressing for a vegan friendly dressing–pomegranate dressing? yum!

  • Reply Erin @ Meaningful Eats October 26, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    This sounds like a wonderful combination! I have been loving delicata squash this year!

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