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No-Fail Kale Caesar Salad

May 24, 2011

My family and close friends definitely know my love (obsession) with cookbooks.  At times, I know they hesitate to purchase “yet another cookbook” for me, however, I am never disappointed in opening a gift to discover a new cookbook!  In fact, from that moment of first opening the gift, I cannot wait to find a quiet moment to flip through all the pages!   I especially enjoy the cookbooks with history and stories of the origins of the recipes.  My Italian cookbooks are like travel guides to the place I dream to go to one day.

Recently my niece, Nina, heard about this cookbook, specifically popular for one recipe, and immediately took her mother (my sister) to check it out.  And very soon after that, it arrived in my mailbox!  The cookbook, 100 Recipes Every Woman Should Know is from the editors of Glamour Magazine.  It is truly a great first cookbook for young, single women or a new bride as it not only has easy recipes but also speaks to women as a guide for life.  The recipes have fun names; I particularly like the Seduction Pork Chops, He Stayed Over Omelet, Get Skinny Dip, Man Trouble Mojito, Bikini Season Baked Salmon, Hook Him Apple Pie….. I think you get the idea!  The book lacks photos which I don’t mind, but would probably be helpful for someone new to cooking.   

The No-Fail Kale Salad caught my attention as I have been attempting to find more ways to incorporate this highly nutritious veggie into my meals.  The fact that the salad needs to rest an hour with the dressing on it is actually a positive as this salad can be made ahead for a dinner party; not having to be tossed and prepared at the last minute.  In fact, I’ve eaten the leftovers the next day and they are still good, if not even better! 

By the way, I’m curious; does anyone know about this book and the specific recipe my niece wanted me to try??

No-Fail Kale Salad

Caesar-style salad with kale, pecorino cheese, and homemade croutons

Adapted from 100 Recipes Every Woman Should Know

Juice of 1 lemon

6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (to be divided, 4tb – 2tb)

2 garlic cloves, mashed

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste (about 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper)

Red pepper flakes, generous pinch depending on preference of spice

4-6 cups loosely packed cups kale, preferably flat leaf purple kale – midribs removed and leaves thinly sliced

2/3 cup grated Pecorino Toscana cheese or Parmigiano Reggiano

1 small loaf ciabatta or other rustic bread cut into 1 inch pieces, about 1 cup

In a large salad bowl, whisk the lemon juice, 4 tablespoons of the olive oil, garlic, kosher salt and pepper.  Add kale and toss well.  Add 2/3 of cheese, toss again.  Rest salad for 1 hour in the refrigerator, the dressing will soften the kale and give it a romaine like texture.   

In the meantime, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Toss the bread cubes with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil.  Spread cubes on baking sheet.  Toast for 7 minutes or until golden brown.   Remove from the oven and cool.  After the salad has rested at least one hour, add the bread cubes, toss again and top with remaining cheese and serve.  Serves 4.

22 Comments leave one →
  1. May 24, 2011 1:21 pm

    I thought I invented the seduction pork chops! I love this salad. Isn’t it funny how certain foods are marketed to men and women differently.

    • May 25, 2011 8:01 am

      I so agree, marketing tactics are very clever. And simply changing the name of a dish, i.e., Seduction Pork Chops, instantly makes that dish so more appealing!

  2. May 24, 2011 3:34 pm

    What a great recipe! And, I too have been meaning to incorporate kale into my diet more often. Thanks for sharing!

  3. May 24, 2011 3:50 pm

    I’m like you… I have soooo many cookbooks but still love getting more.
    This salad looks great. Will have to check out the book.

  4. May 24, 2011 7:31 pm

    My mom will love this recipe, she’s a huge fan of kale and is also always looking for different ways to incorporate it into our meals. I’ve never heard of that cookbook before but the recipe titles sound super cute!

  5. May 25, 2011 8:01 am

    Mmm, this looks so delicious! I love kale, can’t find it all that often here though – makes me want a big bowl right now! I always like to rub the bread cubes in minced garlic as well as the oil before baking/roasting – gives them a really nice garlicky flavour!

  6. May 25, 2011 8:08 am

    Okay your like the second person this week using kale and it seems i need to get on the bandwagon and start doing things with it. I am thinking this salad looks AMAZING and maybe some crispy kale chips for another night! great post and recipe!

  7. May 25, 2011 8:12 am

    I rarely make salads with Kale for some unknown, but yours looks terrific and I can’t wait to try this simple but yummy recipe. I have heard several good things about the book too.

  8. May 25, 2011 6:45 pm

    That looks incredible!! I love a yummy salad :)

  9. May 25, 2011 7:41 pm

    Oh! I never made salad with kale…and looking at your recipe and picture I should give this a try. Looks delicious. Hope you are having a great week Linda :-)

  10. May 25, 2011 8:47 pm

    yum! what a great looking salad!

  11. May 25, 2011 9:28 pm

    Linda, the salad looks great! I love kale and use it regularly. I hadn’t heard about the book but I am a huge kale and garlic fan so this is a must try recipe for me. Thank you for sharing.

  12. May 26, 2011 8:28 am

    Such a great way to make use of kale. It has become so popular and this isa wonderful recipe.

  13. May 26, 2011 10:31 am

    I love bread salads and have been trying to find interesting kale recipes, this looks great and may be where the kale in the garden goes soon!

  14. Nina permalink
    May 26, 2011 4:42 pm

    WOW! I am so impressed with your blog Aunt Linda! That was so sweet of you to mention me regarding the cookbook I found for you. I’m so happy that you like it and that you talked about it on your blog! The kale ceasar salad looks delicious…I love ceasar salad!

    • May 26, 2011 6:43 pm

      Thank you Nina! I have a very good feeling you are going to have a passion for cooking too and enjoy cooking all kinds of food!! Love you!

  15. Gloria permalink
    May 26, 2011 5:04 pm

    You never cease to amaze me on all your receips! You are truly amazing and make me so proud of you. You are such an inspiration for me and all women in general. It is such a wonderful thing to have special interests which help you express yourself. I wish you continued success on your blog!

    • May 26, 2011 6:44 pm

      Thanks Gloria! I wish we lived close enough so you could come over for dinner!!

  16. February 8, 2012 4:33 pm

    I’ve never tried Kale salads before, so they are now on my must do list.

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