Kale, that curly dark green leaf, is ubiquitous. I even saw it in Whole Foods today in the chip section… as in kale chips in savory flavors. I’ve baked and roasted it and added it to soups and sauces. But I hadn’t prepared it raw. How happy I am to report that it is delicious as a salad and is now a family favorite.
I tasted this at The Napa Valley Grill in Los Angeles and thought it would be even better with a few changes. I used currants instead of raisins and Spanish Marcona almonds instead of California almonds. I also like the idea of combining crispy sweet romaine lettuce with the slightly bitter kale. It is a happy combination of flavors.
The lemony whole-grain mustard dressing is just the ticket to dress these mixed greens. Remember that you can use this vinaigrette with any other green salad with equally satisfying results. If you can find Meyer lemons use them for an even richer citrus flavor. And tiny diced pears, peaches, nectarines, plums or even dried apricots make a colorful substitute for the currants. Serve this salad as a side dish with grilled fish or poultry or as a main course for lunch.
- To cook the quinoa, rinse ¾ cup quinoa, combine quinoa with 1 ½ cups water or chicken stock and boil it for 10 minutes. Let cool.
- To shred the kale and lettuce, stack leaves on top of each other, roll up tightly and then thinly slice through the leaves until you have shredded greens.
Shredded Kale and Romaine Salad with Quinoa, Currants and Almonds
Serves 6 as a side dish or 3 to 4 as a main dish
5 ounces shredded kale (½ 10 ounce bag)
1 medium head of Romaine lettuce, dark green leaves removed, shredded
1 1/2 cups cooked cooled quinoa
1/3 cup dried currants
1/3 cup toasted almonds, preferably Marcona, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup olive oil
¼ cup tablespoons lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium shallot, minced
1 ½ tablespoons Dijon style whole grain mustard
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
2 tablespoons freshly shaved Parmesan cheese, for garnish
- In a salad bowl combine the kale, lettuce, quinoa, currants and almonds together and toss.
- In a food processor combine the salad dressing ingredients. Process until smooth. Taste for seasoning.
- Just before serving, toss the dressing with the salad ingredients and garnish with the Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.