This is one of those things that I noticed one morning and then seemed to see it everywhere — massaged kale salad. This, of course, means that I had to try it. Basically, you massage sea salt into the kale (preferably dinosaur aka lacinato kale) with your fingertips. This softens the kale and releases its natural moisture and bitterness making it lusciously smooth and tender. This dressing is the perfect pairings of flavors and textures, too, with a nice kick from the ginger and the honey and lemon flavors melding it all together and softening it. I made half a batch for a delicious weekday lunch — mmmm!
Massaged Kale Salad
Adapted from Eating is Art
1 bunch kale
1/2-1 teaspoon sea salt
4 tablespoons honey
4 tablespoons lemon juice (one whole lemon)
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1 apple (cored and sliced)
6 radishes (sliced)
1/2 cup roasted sunflower seeds
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Spread sunflower seeds in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes or so. Remove and let cool.
Rinse the kale well and then cut into 1/4 inch wide strips and place in a large bowl. (I prefer to remove the stems, but if you'd like, with the dinosaur kale, it's not really necessary.) Take about a half teaspoon of sea salt and sprinkle it over kale. Then, using your hands, massage and squeeze the kale vigorously, so that the kale softens and moisture begins to sweat out. Taste it to see if you need any more salt, which you probably will. Massage the kale until it’s moist and tender.
Mix together the lemon juice, honey, and ginger. Toss together with the kale. Add the apple, radish, avocado, roasted sunflower seeds and some freshly ground black pepper. Toss again to combine.