This recipe is based on the first kale salad I ever ate, years ago at the former Lu Lu Wilson restaurant in Aspen. One of my dinner companions recommended it to me, and I ordered it with some skepticism as I’d never before eaten raw kale in lieu of salad greens. Raw kale is now a staple of my diet, but I like it best minced as in this recipe, as opposed to eating big raw leafy pieces of it, which I find hard to, um, chew and swallow.
As with all my cooking, I rarely use exact measurements and often sub out ingredients to suit my mood, but here’s an approximation that I urge you to play around with. It’s best made ahead and allowed to marinate for several hours. That softens the kale and enables it to pick up the dressing flavors. The dressing is totally free form, just keep drizzling, tossing and tasting until you like it.
–1 bunch of kale, stemmed, leaves minced in food processor
–1/4 c. of some toasted nuts — pine nuts or almonds work well
–1/2 c. of some dried fruit, chopped — apricots, raisins, currants, prunes
— salt and pepper to taste
— drizzle to taste of extra virgin olive oil
— drizzle to taste of seasoned rice vinegar
— small drizzle of honey, if desired (though I find the rice vinegar usually provides enough sweetness)
–zest of one lemon and the juice squeezed over the greens
–1/4 c. parmesan cheese