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Kale and Orange Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

Kale and Orange Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

A beautiful contrast between the clean, brightness of lemon and the gentle sweetness of fresh orange brings a simple kale salad to life. Toss with Parmesan cheese and toasted pecans and simple becomes quite delicious!

Kale is a sturdy green that has been grown in gardens for thousands of years, first appearing in this country in the 1600s. Kale is more common now than in recent years but there are still a lot of naysayers when it comes to this gorgeous green. I love using this green in juices – it’s loaded with vitamin C, calcium and fiber and according to the American Kale Association kale was considered a super food during World War II. The balance of flavors in this salad  are quite basic – kale, lemon, orange, Parmesan, pecans, garlic and rich olive oil – but the results are really wonderful!

Kale’s tough leaves and stems can be a challenge. As with any hearty green you need to wash the leaves thoroughly. Start by placing the leaves in cold water, swish them around to loosen any grit in the leaves or on the stems. Then rinse and repeat until the water is clear and there is no sign of grit on the kale – about 2 to 3 times.

Roll up the leaves out in an absorbent towel and let the greens dry. You don’t want any moisture trapped in the leaves to water down your vinaigrette. You can wash the kale 2 to 3 days in advance and refrigerate.

Next tackle the stem, which is really quite easy. Lay the leaf out flat with the stem side up or fold the leaf in half and cut the stem away. Or simply grab hold of the stem in one hand and the leaf in the other and pull the stem from the leaf.

Next you need to tenderize the leaves. There are two ways. One is to “massage” the leaves. Emily found a great way to tackle this task. She drops the leaves into the bowl of her KitchenAid mixer and lets the beaters do the work. Beat until the leaves looked as though they’ve been sautéed. The second is to chop the leaves into very, very fine pieces – almost mincing them.

Kale has an slightly peppery note that plays well with both tangy and subtly sweet notes. Light and refreshing – this kale salad is perfect for a midwinter break!

Kale and Orange Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

For the salad:

1 bunch curly kale, about 10 to 12 ounces

¼ cup chopped toasted pecans

1 large Cara Cara or navel orange, peeled, sectioned and cut into bite-size pieces

¼ cup shredded Parmesan cheese plus extra for serving

For the lemon vinaigrette:

Zest from one small lemon, about ½ teaspoon

3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, about 1 small lemon

¾ to 1 teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

½ teaspoon minced garlic

5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Remove the stem from the back of the kale leaves. Finely chop the kale leaves – almost mincing them. You want 4 cups of chopped greens.

Toss the kale leaves into a large serving bowl along with the orange, the toasted pecans and the Parmesan cheese.

Place the lemon zest and the lemon juice along with the ¾ teaspoon of the kosher salt, pepper and the garlic into a small food processer or blender.

Add the olive oil and process until the vinaigrette is smooth and blended together. Check for seasoning and add the additional ¼ teaspoon kosher salt if desired.

Pour the vinaigrette over the kale salad and toss to fully coat.

Top with an extra sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.

This salad keeps for a day or two in your fridge even with the dressing. Serves 4.

Kale and Orange Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

February 4, 2019
: Serves 4.

A beautiful contrast between the clean, brightness of lemon and the gentle sweetness of fresh orange brings a simple kale salad to life. Toss with Parmesan cheese and toasted pecans simple becomes quite delicious!

By:

Ingredients
  • For the salad:
  • 1 bunch curly kale, about 10 to 12 ounces
  • ¼ cup chopped toasted pecans
  • 1 large Cara Cara or navel orange, peeled, sectioned and cut into bite-size pieces
  • ¼ cup shredded Parmesan cheese plus extra for serving
  • For the lemon vinaigrette:
  • Zest from one small lemon, about ½ teaspoon
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, about 1 small lemon
  • ¾ to 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon minced garlic
  • 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Directions
  • Step 1 Remove the stem from the back of the kale leaves. Finely chop the kale leaves – almost mincing them. You want 4 cups of chopped greens.
  • Step 2 Toss the kale leaves into a large serving bowl along with the orange, the toasted pecans and the Parmesan cheese.
  • Step 3 Place the lemon zest and the lemon juice along with the ¾ teaspoon of the kosher salt, pepper and the garlic into a small food processer or blender. Add the olive oil and process until the vinaigrette is smooth and blended together. Check for seasoning and add the additional ¼ teaspoon kosher salt if desired.
  • Step 4 Pour the vinaigrette over the kale salad and toss to fully coat.
  • Step 5 Top with an extra sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.
  • Step 6 This salad keeps for a day or two in your fridge even with the dressing.


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