Kale is the ultimate SuperFood, an anti-cancer food packed with vitamins and minerals and cell-coating arsenal.
I fell in love with Kale at a quaint pizza joint called The Luggage Room in Pasadena, California. The Luggage Room, the sidecar of La Grande Orange, serves pizza made with a 19 year old sourdough starter crust. For beer lovers, the Pasadena Stone Brewing tasting room is across the courtyard, and patrons may bring bottles of Stone or Growlers to the Luggage Room to pair with pizza. A popular pastime of the local cycling population.
Alas I digress.
The Kale Salad at Luggage Room was an inspiration to me, and shortly thereafter I was introduced to the term “massaged Kale” at the Market on Holly. I had to ask, “massaged Kale?” The process was easy: cut the Kale, pour olive oil, lemon juice, sprinkle sea salt and rub, or massage, the Kale until it felt soft and looked almost cooked.
I tried the process at once. It’s simple, and the massaged Kale acts as a base for any toppings you’d like to add.
Here are a few ideas:
Basic Massaged Kale
I bunch of Kale for every 2-3 people
1 lemon per bunch of Kale
High Quality Olive Oil
Redmond’s Sea Salt
Rip or cut Kale to your preference. May be shredded or simply torn pieces. The smaller the pieces, the softer the consistency of the Kale. Drizzle enough olive oil to coat the entire Kale, squeeze the juice of 1/2 lemon and add more if there is not a puddle in the bottom of your bowl. Sprinkle sea salt. Mix the Kale, oil, juice and salt and let sit for up to 30″ if you have other dished to prepare. (If you are pressed for time, just go to the massage). Proceed to massage the Kale. I use surgical gloves, especially if the Kale if for guests. Massage by grabbing a handful and rubbing the pieces together. Repeat until the entire bowl of Kale has been softened to taste. I recommend tasting as you go so you may find the exact consistency. If you are making this salad for guests, opt for the softest Kale. When your full bowl has been reduced by half, you’re likely finished with the massage. At this point, the salad is ready to eat, or you may add myriad toppings to taste. This is an excellent salad for work lunch as it never becomes soggy or swampy after sitting overnight in the refrigerator.
1/8 – 1/4 cup crushed fresh nuts. I prefer Pecans. Sometimes I use Marcona Almonds.
1/4 cup dried fruit. Cranberries are delicious here.
1 cup of fresh fruit. Fresh figs, diced apples are always a great choice.
1 avocado, diced.
Shredded cheese. A hard sheep’s cheese is nice here, such as Pecorino Romano. Or a Bleu cheese for a richer taste.
When it comes to toppings, the options are endless. A combination of Marcona Almonds, Fresh (or dried) Figs and shredded Pecorino will bring guests back for more (better make extra!).
I hope you enjoy the massaged Kale. Kale is also easy to cultivate at home, it can be grown in pots or in the ground. Be wary of gophers, they truly love it. Add this to your weekly menu and you’ll get a large amount of essential minerals your body needs to function.
A few Kale facts about daily values for a 1 cup serving:
|Vitamin A||133%||Vitamin C||134%|
|Vitamin B-6||10%||Vitamin B-12||0%|