Wednesday, October 12, 2011

vegan mofo :: lemony raw kale salad recipe

Kale makes a crunchy, flavor-packed salad base
As I mentioned in my last post on anemic produce, these days, many supermarket lettuces taste frighteningly neutral and lack varietal individuality. Since a stellar salad requires an assertive base, I've been foregoing box-shop lettuces for flavor-packed baby organic spinach, baby greens, arugula, mâche or frisée. This has been my pattern, as of late. And we all need to break out of patterns, right?

Most people, myself included, tend to view kale as a vegetable that should be cooked. But if you chop kale finely enough, its slightly bitter aroma and stalwart crunch makes it a primo fresh salad base. And unlike lettuce-based salads, you can make a kale-based salad ahead of time without worrying about it wilting [perfect for picnics and packed lunches]. In fact, I recommend making this salad a day or so ahead, so the kale has time to absorb the bright citrus essence. You can also stretch it out by adding fresh greens just before serving, like baby spinach. This recipe takes a whopping 10 minutes of hands-on time. [Take that, Rachel Ray.]

Lemony Raw Kale Salad
  • 1 T extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 T nama shoyu or soy sauce
  • Juice and zest of one organic lemon
  • 5 scallions including greens, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1/2 T agave nectar
  • 1 bunch of kale, destemmed and finely chopped [1-inch pieces, or smaller]
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 T sesame seeds, or more, to taste
Serves 4

In a large bowl, whisk together oil, nama shoyu, lemon zest and juice, scallions, garlic and agave nectar. Toss in the kale and stir well to coat. Adjust seasonings. Ideally, let in marinate in the 'fridge overnight. Just before serving, toss in sesame seeds.


julie hasson said...

Your salad looks great Dynise! I too have been forgoing regular lettuce, and enjoying raw kale salads. Something else we have in common; )

xo Julie

VeggieLow said...

i LOVE raw kale salads... i like to use avocado as the dressing and massage the leaves w/ it and some evoo... i'll try it w/ lemon and shoyo tho - this looks deelish!

Jeannie said...

Sounds delicious!!

One tip: I julienne my kale, stems included, with my food processor--it's faster than chopping by hand.