I’m trying out a new format for this recipe post. In honour of my wonderfully quirky and candid cousins who said “I don’t want to read about your life – I just want your recipe”. Said with love, of course. Pure honesty. <3
- Kale, 1 large bunch, rinsed, de-stemmed and chopped/torn into small pieces
- ⅓ cup quality cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil
- Juice of 1 lemon (about ¼ cup or so)
- ⅛ cup wine vinegar (red or white)
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- ½ cup sundried tomatoes, chopped into small pieces
- ⅛ cup red onion, diced small
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- salt & pepper - a few dashes of each
- ⅓ cup pumpkin seeds (or other seed/nut of your choice)
- optional: avocado, black olives and/or capers
- Rinse kale, remove tough stems and chop or tear kale into small bite-sized pieces.
- Toss kale bits with some of the olive oil in a large bowl - really massage the oil into the kale, to soften the leaves. Let sit for a few minutes while you prepare the dressing.
- In a medium-sized jar, prepare the dressing: combine remaining olive oil, wine vinegar, lemon juice, maple syrup, garlic, red onion, sundried tomatoes, salt and pepper. Shake it all up in the jar - it will be a pretty 'lumpy' dressing.
- Toss dressing into the bowl of kale along with the pumpkin seeds and any other optional add-ins.
- Mix well and serve.
… And now, for anyone who does want to read my ramblings (including more description and perhaps a side-ways photo…)
It’s mid-November in Ottawa, which would normally mean my gardening season is long over – in fact, my garden *should* likely be buried in snow or covered in frost by now. BUT – lucky for us – we’ve had a particularly mild fall (15 degrees today, instead of a typical November at 1 degree celsius!) and my kale is still happy and green in the garden! Seriously – even my hardy ligularia has packed it in for the year – but check this out:
Happy as can be. I discovered another exciting kale quality a few years ago: it is biennial!!! That means it will come back – apparently certain varieties are even perennial, returning each year, but the varieties I have planted pop back up after a one-year hiatus. I know – exciting stuff!
Anyway, on to the recipe. I started making this salad a few years ago, when my daughter was just 2 and she consistently devoured it – even as a toddler. She was thrilled to help me make it as part of tonight’s dinner – so thrilled that she ate four helpings and was very sad that there wasn’t more.
In a large salad bowl, prepare:
1 bunch kale (I like the curly varieties for this salad). Rinse and remove stems (these can be saved for making compost soup broth), then tear or cut leaves into small pieces (the smaller, the better). Add a few tablespoons of quality olive oil and massage the oil into the leaves, like this:
My daughter generally doesn’t love getting her hands slimy, but for this salad, she happily dove right in!!
For the dressing:
I like to prepare my dressings in glass jars with tight-fitting lids, so I can shake them up quickly and store extras (if any) conveniently for later. Alternatively, just mix with a fork or whisk in a small dish or cup.
1/3 cup cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon (approximately 1/4 cup)
1/8 cup wine vinegar (white or red is fine)
1 Tbsp maple syrup
1/2 cup sundried tomatoes, chopped into small pieces
1/8 cup red onion, diced
salt & pepper, a few dashes of each
Shake up your dressing and mix it into the kale. It will be quite thick and lumpy (…and incredibly flavourful).
1/3 cup pumpkin seeds (or other seed/nuts of choice)
optional: capers, black olives, avocado
Unlike most green salads, you can make this one ahead of time and let the dressing settle in. Kale is tougher than your average leafy green, so doesn’t go soggy and limp the way a lettuce salad would. Go ahead and pack it in your lunch or take it to a pot luck – with the dressing ON!