|Massaged Kale Salad|
Okay, now it's just getting embarrassing. I mean first it's the Friday Shrimp and it's the best shrimp I've ever had. Then it's the Sloppy Bombay Joes and they're insanely good. Now it's this amazing - yes, that's right AMAZING - kale salad. I just can't help myself. When I try something new and it works and it's fantastic, I just want to shout it from the rooftops. So here I go again - Aarti Sequeira's recipes rock and this one is no exception!
Kale is loaded with nutrients and really good for you, and in this salad you get to eat it in its raw state (healthiest) and really enjoy the taste. Sometimes kale can be bitter but with Aarti's technique and additions, I promise you - you will become a kale fan, if not already. I use my husband as a barometer and he has said for years that he didn't like kale, nor mangos. This dish has both kale and mangos and he devoured it.
The firm kale seemed to make the mango almost taste creamy, and draped in the citrusy but lightly sweet dressing it was only enhanced further by the crispy, toasted pepitas. See Aarti's recipe here: Massaged Kale Salad and below is how I made it.
1 bunch kale, stalks removed and discarded, leaves thinly sliced (I used the kale with the small, curly leaves and it was perfect)
1 lemon, juiced
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
2 teaspoons honey
freshly cracked black pepper
1 mango, diced small (about 1 cup) (I used a Keitt Green Mango)
handful of pepitas (pumpkin seeds), lightly toasted
In large bowl, place kale, half the fresh squeezed lemon juice, a drizzle of oil, and a couple of pinches of kosher salt. Massage the kale with your hands until it starts to soften and slightly wilt. With the kale I used, this happened almost immediately, but it could take 2-3 minutes. Set aside.
In small bowl, whisk remaining lemon juice, honey and lots of freshly cracked black pepper. Then stream in the oil while whisking until it starts to emulsify and look like a dressing. Pour dressing over kale, add mango and pepitas, toss and serve.
Btw, this salad holds up well even after adding the dressing. The kale holds its shape and doesn't get soggy even when sitting for quite some time.
Cook's Note: To toast the pepitas, just place in a skillet over medium heat and lightly toast on each side, about 1-2 minutes per side.