Sunday, May 15, 2011

Garlicky Kale Salad

This is another great recipe from Tea & Cookies. It was a very simple salad to make, with basic ingredients, but it was fresh, bright and packed a lot of punch. I doubled the recipe below, and we had enough to eat as a side to roasted chicken for dinner, then I had the leftover salad for lunch the next day. I absolutely loved the idea of grating the garlic on the microplane zester: it makes a garlic paste that visually disappears, but its taste is evenly present throughout the salad, without some bites that are bland and others that are overwhelmingly garlicky. The Engineer and I both loved this salad, but we both love garlic; you might want to start with only one clove and taste the dressing as you go. (In any case, I don’t recommend this on a first date, but as long as the Engineer and I both had garlic breath, it was fine!) I made the dressing again with another salad to help use up leftover produce, including kale and cabbage, and it worked really well. I’ll be making it again on a regular basis, because not only is it great, but I get to say, “Look, Mom, I’m eating kale and loving it!”

1 Tbsp olive oil (plus additional for drizzling, if you like)
1 Tbsp lemon juice (plus additional for drizzling, if you like)
½ tsp garlic (grated from 1 or 2 cloves)
¼ tsp salt
2 Tbsp parmesan (or pecorino) cheese, grated
a ½-inch slice of French or sourdough bread, toasted until dry and crunchy
2 cups of kale (Tuscan or dino kale is best), washed and cut in thin ribbons
ground pepper (or crushed red pepper flakes), to taste

In a large bowl, whisk the olive oil and lemon juice with the garlic until smooth. Add the salt and a few grinds of black pepper (or some crushed red pepper if you’d prefer). Add half of the cheese and mix until smooth. (I used the microplane zester for both the garlic and the cheese.)

Crumble the slice of toasted bread (this is a great use for stale bread) into small pieces and toss with the dressing. Add the kale and toss until the bread is evenly distributed. Taste and add a little more oil or lemon juice, if desired.

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