This post may be forcing you to have an Indiana Jones moment: Kale? Why did it have to be kale?
Bear with me. Yes, it’s super-trendy and seems like the kind of rabbit-food roughage you punish yourself into eating, but this recipe will convert you. At least it did for me.
I tried a similar salad at a friend’s wedding at the Highline Hotel in Chelsea (woo, #kimandtaylor2014!) and got hooked. After years of sweet-meets-savory cranberry and goat cheese salads, this tangy, zesty wonder stood out in all the right ways. Days later I kept thinking about it: It was so simple, so garlicky, so cheesy. After a little searching, I found a similar recipe online, courtesy of the Gray Lady herself, and naturally, started fussing with it.
I like a little less salt and a little more lemon juice than the original recipe, but I encourage you to try it a few ways and make it your own. And if you come across a more satisfying set of ratios (or ingredients), let us know in the comments below, okay?
The beauty of the dressing is that you can get to the point where you just eyeball the ingredients, shake ’em in a sealed mason jar, and you’re good to go. That’s it.
What really sold me on this Garlic Parmesan Kale Salad though is how incredibly fast it is to whip up, how few ingredients it requires, and best of all, the fact that it’s such an uncommon combination of flavors that the meal never feels like a sad desk lunch. And bonus: That fibrous kale comes in handy — it’s so hearty that you can slather it in dressing as you box up your lunch on your way to work, and by 1 p.m., the kale is tender, not soggy.Victory! Savory, lemon-splashed victory!
Chop up a little grilled chicken or tofu on top, and you’ve got a complete meal you’ll savor every second of. Maybe pop a mint afterward though, ’cause your breath is going to be harsh. (Just being honest here.)
Garlic-Parmesan Kale Salad Recipe
Recipe adapted from Jill Moskin's Lemon-Garlic Kale Salad for the New York Times.
- 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 3-4 lemons)
- Pinch of salt
- 1 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 bag washed and dried kale, shredded and stems removed
- 1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- Combine the lemon juice, a small pinch of salt, extra virgin olive oil and minced garlic in a lidded jar or salad dressing container. Close the lid and shake vigorously. Set aside for at least 20 minutes, so the dressing is infused with garlic flavor.
- Tear the kale into bite-sized pieces, discarding any thick stems, and place in individual bowls or Tupperware. Before serving, toss with salad dressing and top with a hearty sprinkle of parmesan cheese. (Note: You can add the dressing and cheese in the morning, if you're taking the salad to work. Just make sure you refrigerate it.)