Chilled Kale Salad

I made this salad to bring to a cookout with a neighbor and afterwards immediately added this to my book of recipes! This salad is really versatile and you can add/subtract ingredients based on your mood & what's in the fridge.

Have you ever heard of massaging kale?

I hadn't until recently, so decided to give it a whirl. Massaging kale takes some of the bitterness out of the flavor and makes it taste a little lighter and sweeter. I don't do this when I cook kale because the heat usually takes care of the bitterness issue, but this is my go-to technique for eating raw kale.

So... start by rinsing the kale and cutting out the stems. To cut out the stems, I usually fold each leaf in half length-wise and cut each stem out individually. Once you've done that, pile the kale leaves on top of each other and give them a nice massage. I usually just squeeze the leaves back and forth with both hands. Usually 30-60 seconds will do the trick. 

You'll start to see the leaves loosen up a bit and the color may brighten. If you're not sure whether or not to keep going, take a bite! If the leaves still taste a little bitter, give them a little more love. 

Now the recipe...

Again, feel free to be creative here! But I used...

  • Kale

  • Chickpeas

  • Carrot

  • Celery

  • Apple

  • Parsley

  • Sesame seeds

  • Topped with homemade lemon-garlic tahini

Chop up your freshly massaged kale and add to a large dish.

Add cooked chickpeas - feel free to use the canned kind, but keep in mind that it's healthier if you buy dry chickpeas and cook your own. You never know what kinds of preservatives are in the water of the canned kind... definitely weirds me out.

(I'll also include a blog post later on how to sprout your own beans to add even more nutrients to the dish!)

Finely chop up carrot, celery, apple and parsley. I'm in love with this particular chopper - it's such a time saver and chops pretty much anything into such tiny pieces!

Sprinkle with sesame seeds.

The homemade sauce.

So - how do you make lemon garlic tahini sauce, you ask? Well, it's really pretty easy. First you'll need a blender or food processor. Add about 1/2 cup of sesame seeds, one lemon's worth of juice, 1 clove of garlic, some salt and pepper to your liking, and about 1/2 cup of sesame oil. (Olive oil or any other oil you like will work, too! I just love the sesame flavor.)

Blend those ingredients up until the consistency is to your liking. Feel free to add more oil to thin out the dressing. 

And there you have it!

Feel free to post comments, questions, successes below.