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Saturday, December 6, 2014

Kale Salad with Cranberries and Pecans


This colorful salad makes a healthy holiday side dish. It's full of antioxidants and fiber from the cranberries and kale, and healthy fats from the pecans and anchovies.

In most recipes for kale salad, the leaves are massaged to render them tender and less bitter, but I find it unnecessary. I just make the salad first and allow the leaves to marinate in the dressing while I finish the rest of the meal. By the time everything else is ready, the kale is too. But I wouldn't hesitate to eat it just after I make it, as long as the leaves are cut into thin strips.

If you think you don't like anchovies, add them anyway because they add a savory flavor, not a fishy one. Anchovies are a healthy choice because they're low in toxins and high in the essential omega-3 fats that most of us don't get enough of.

1 organic lemon
1 garlic clove 
4 anchovies, minced
3 tablespoons cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt
Freshly ground peppercorn
Pinch red pepper flakes
1 bunch Tuscan kale (AKA black or lacinato kale)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup raw pecan pieces
1 cup finely chopped celery leaves
  1. Zest the lemon into a large mixing bowl. Cut the lemon in half and add 2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed juice.
  2. Grate the garlic into the bowl and whisk it into the lemon juice.
  3. Add the anchovies, olive oil, a small pinch of salt (the anchovies are also salty), peppercorn, and red pepper flakes. Whisk everything together, taste for seasoning, and make any necessary adjustments.
  4. Prepare the kale by cutting off the bottoms of the stems where there isn't much leaf on either side. Cut the leaves into thin strips. Add them to the bowl and toss to coat them thoroughly with the dressing. Add the cranberries and pecans and toss again. Stir in the celery leaves just before serving.

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