Raw kale makes a fantastic salad with more texture and flavor than most salads made with mixed greens. The trick is slicing the kale thinly so the leaves aren't tough and chewy. And don't be shy about the dressing - I use more dressing on kale salads than I do on regular salads since the kale soaks it up without getting soggy.
Try to grate the cheese as thinly as possible for this salad. A microplane grater works great for this, or use the small holes on your box grater. Use a hard cheese with a salty, nutty flavor like Parmigiano-Reggiano, Grana Padano, Dry Jack or any type of Pecorino.
Tuscan kale (also called lacinto, cavalo nero, black and dinosaur) is used most often for raw salads. Tuscan kale has a dark green color and textured leaves. It tends to be more tender than varieties of kale with curly leaves, however, don't let this discourage you from trying curly kale raw. Dress the salad and then let it sit in the fridge for an hour or so. The longer it sits, the more tender the leaves will become. Kale is thought to be a nutritional powerhouse and good source of vitamins A, C and K and copper, potassium, iron, manganese and phosphorus.
- 1 bunch of kale, very thinly sliced. If the rib/stem is thick and tough, you can cut it out first and then just slice the leaves.
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced or finely chopped
- 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 cup finely grated hard cheese, plus more for garnish (cheese such as Parmigiano-Reggiano, Grana Padano, Pecorino or Dry Jack works well)
- 4 tablespoons oil (I like a combination of 2 tablespoons walnut oil and 2 tablespoon olive oil)
- Place the chopped kale in a large salad bowl.
- In a smaller bowl combine the lemon juice, shallot, and salt. To mellow the flavor of the shallot a bit, let this mixture set for 10 minutes.
- Add the grated cheese. Whisk in the oil.
- Pour the dressing over the kale and toss well. Grate additional cheese over the salad. Serve immediately or let the salad sit for awhile to soak up the dressing.