Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Massaged Kale Salad

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Raw Kale... Really??? Doesn't that sound... well, doesn't that sound harsh?  Something that would taste rough and gritty going down.

Well, I was just introduced to a technique that turns normally rough greens into something soft and especially tasty.  the trick is to aggressively massage the kale.  Do this by hand and you can actually feel the texture of the greens turn from rough  to soft.  From something you would refer not to eat to something special.

The Massaged Kale does retain it's shape, even when rubbed with oil and lemon juice.  The leaves absorb the oil, keeping this salad clinging wet with the simple dressing without having it pool into the bottom of the bowl.  And of course, as you can tell from the photos, the delicious fresh bold green color makes this simply stunning salad something special to serve!

Keep scrolling down for this easy to follow recipe...

This raw salad deserves a specialty Olive Oil.  Here in god's Country (Kansas City), we are fortunate enough to have a specialty Olive Oil store called The Tasteful Olive....
Welcome! We are a unique olive oil and vinegar store where you can sample over 60 fresh unflavored, fused, and infused olive oils from around the world and aged/naturally flavored balsamic vinegars, and browse many other accessory gourmet products. "For the love of good health!" 
The store is a delight to shop at.  It is near a Penzey's Spice specialty store, sharing a block with one of the area's best Farmer's markets, so a foodie heaven!

Well, the Tasteful Olive stocks an amazing Blood Orange Olive Oil that is wonderful when drizzled on (or in this case massaged into) raw vegetables and salads.

Just a tip on raw veggies and salads, these are the times to break out the slightly better quality of Olive Oil and dressings.  The nature of the premium oils is enhanced because you do not cook with them... just the pure taste of the oil.  This will work and taste just fine with "normal" Extra Virgin Olive Oil.  But if you have a chance to add a premium oil like the one from The Tasteful Olive....you will be rewarded with something special.

there are a couple of extras, Lemon Zest, toasted pine nuts and some fantastic sweet dried cranberries.  I added some fresh grated Parmesan and my new FAVORITE salad was born!

OK, Here's what I did...

Massaged Kale Salad

  • 1 Large Bunch Kale, torn into bite size bits and massaged until tender
  • 1/4 Cup Premium Olive Oil, I used Blood Orange Infused EVOO
  • 1 Lemon Zested and juiced
  • 1/2 Cup Dried Cranberries
  • 1/3 Cup Pine Nuts, toasted
  • 1/2 Cup Freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Small Pinch Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 Small Kumato Tomato or Plum Tomato, thinly sliced
  • NEXT TIME, I will add some Mandarin Orange Slices
Cooking Directions
  1. In a large bowl, drizzle the Olive Oil over the Kale pieces. Begin to massage the kale vigorously to break down the rough texture. You can feel the kale release and become much more tender... Note: This is a KEY STEP.
  2. Add the Lemon Zest and Lemon Juice from the single large lemon (or two small ones)
  3. Add the remaining ingredients, toss and...
  4. Serve COLD or room Temperature and ENJOY

Be brave, massage your kale... you will be thrilled you did!

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