Simply put, kale is a misunderstood and underestimated green. Kale leaves are known to be tougher than the usual green as they grow with a natural waxy coating. To fix this tough issue, massaging or rubbing the leaves with oil and a little lemon juice before dressing them actually removes this waxy coating and softens the kale so that the leaves better absorb the flavors of the dressing. Using a vinaigrette with lemon juice like the recipe below will continue softening the fibers in the kale while adding great flavor.
Asian Pear and Kale Salad
1 bunch kale, washed, removed from stalks & cut into bite-sized pieces
Juice of one lemon, divided
Drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil plus ¼ cup for making the dressing
2 teaspoons honey or agave nectar
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pear, diced small (about 1 cup) can substitute other fruits if desired.
2 rounded tablespoons slivered almonds
- In large serving bowl, add the kale, juice from one half of the lemon, and a drizzle of oil. Massage until the kale starts to soften, 1-2 minutes. Set aside while you make the dressing.
- In a small bowl, whisk lemon juice from the remaining half lemon with the honey and freshly ground black pepper. Stream in the 1/4 cup of oil while whisking until a dressing forms.
- Pour the dressing over the kale, add the pear or other fruit of choice and almonds.
- Toss and serve. Keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 2 to 3 days.