29 April 2009

salt "cooked" kale

my friend melanie introduced me to the wonders of raw kale salad. she brought it to a brunch at chuck and hank's place, and i fell in love. she explained that the kale was first rubbed with salt, which apparently breaks down the cellular structure just enough to make the leaves tender and delicious, while preserving that fresh taste.

our kale, which had over-wintered in our cold frame, has really taken off this spring. we harvested a bunch, and i made a salad from this recipe:

1 bunch kale
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt (or more, to taste)
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 grapefruit, sliced and chopped

chop the kale into thin ribbons. drizzle the olive oil onto the kale, sprinkle with salt and then massage the kale with your hands. add lemon juice, vinegar and grapefruit to kale, toss and serve. (recipe adapted from one i found on elanaspantry.com).

the salt massage also releases the juices, and brightens the leaves to a glossy emerald. this one has grapefuit, but you could leave it out. melanie's salad featured pomegranate seeds, sparkling like little jewels, in the rich green ruffles.


Abby said...

I LOVE raw kale salads! Scott used to work at a raw cafe in Atlanta, and makes an amazing kale salad. Don't you just feel amazing after you eat something like that?!

Steph said...

Awesome - I will try this! Our kale is ready to pick. We've been steaming it and eating with a bit of vinegar, and toasted sunflower seeds.

Actchy said...

This is the second kale recipe I've seen in the month that looks tempting. The other is as follows:

A bunch of kale
Olive oil
Parmesan cheese, grated

Preheat your oven to 375F. Tear the kale into bite-sized pieces and wash and dry it in a salad spinner, but don't worry if the leaves are still a little damp -- somehow it gets crispy anyway.

Spread these pieces in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and then toss them gently. Sprinkle grated Parm evenly over the kale. It should be a light dusting, not a heavy snowfall.

Bake in oven 10 minutes, or until kale is shriveled and crispy-looking, but still green. It shouldn't take much longer than 10 minutes, so do keep an eye on it; it can quickly turn to a brownish mess, very disappointing.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the fantastic recipe. I wish I had more recipes I can experiment with acai juice because I happen to be a huge fan of acai juice.

E... said...

Just have to echo Actchy on the toasting up the kale in the oven recipe. I made it and loved it, though no one else in my house caught on enough for me to try it by buying my own bunches: one person can only eat so much kale. I got my version of the recipe from a book called the Dinner Diaries: Raising Whole Wheat Kids in a White Bread World, which I would highly recommend for anyone struggling to feed their children healthy food.

Lee said...

I just started a parasite cleanse and was looking for a way to cook kale without cooking in oil, which is how I usually do it. I LOVE this salad. My very first attempt was one minute after reading your recipe on line. I added some basil, replaced the balsamic vinegar with raw pastuerized apple cider and sprayed a bit of bragg's amino acids, a dash of dulse flakes....heated up some quinoa from last nights dinner and yummmmmy! Thanks for making my cleanse bit easier!