A Bitten Word Recipe
We know, we know. Kale Salad. It's ubiquitous. It's overdone. And we've already hit "peak kale."
But at our house, kale salad remains a staple. Sure, we're ardent kale fans, but really it's just the accessory here.
This salad is all about the dressing: a potent garlicky concoction that makes kale salad an absolutely delight without having to add a bunch of salad toppings to hide the kale.
Full disclosure: the inspiration for this salad dressing came from an unlikely place: the buffet at Whole Foods. We don't buy off the buffet (no judgment if you do), but one day we were strolling along through the aisles and noticed a kale salad on the salad bar. The description of the dressing sounded deliciously lemony and garlicky, and simple to make. Some ingredients were listed, but no proportions. So we went home and played around with the recipe.
Flash forward: We've been making these salad almost weekly ever since.
Caution: It is very garlicky. But we like it that way. Just make sure your sweetie is 1. also eating the salad and 2. not a vampire.
The addition of liquid aminos, salt and the nutritional yeast give the dressing a salty/umami kick. We think it's delicious, but you should feel free to add in a little more olive oil if you think the flavor is too intense.
Oh, and a word on that nutritional yeast, which we first mentioned a couple weeks back. We're really enjoying cooking with it. It adds a nice savory, almost funky note that we enjoy. We are suckers for flavor shortcuts -- things like aminos, anchovy paste, Chinese five-spice or harissa that instantly add a depth of flavor. And nutritional yeast is a great addition to that flavor arsenal.
Overall, we really like this salad. The apples are a nice sweet contrast to the savory dressing and the kale. You can also experiment with other add-ins if you want: Raisins are nice. Toasted walnuts are delicious. You could substitute avocado for the apple. The dressing is really versatile.
If you need us, we'll be trolling the grocery store aisles looking for more inspiration...
Garlicky Dressing with Kale and Apples
A recipe from The Bitten Word
Yields a little more than 1 cup of dressing; you'll have dressing left over for another day.
For the dressing:
1 large head of garlic (approximately 20 cloves)
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons nutritional yeast
3 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons liquid aminos
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
For the salad:
1 pound kale, trimmed, stems removed, and chopped
1 small sweet apple (we prefer Honeycrisp), cored and cut into thin slices
Toasted walnuts, optional
Make the dressing: Using the flat side of a knife, smash and then peel the garlic cloves and place them in a food processor. Add the remaining ingredients. Process until smooth (30 to 60 seconds). Taste the dressing and adjust to your liking. If it's too garlicky for you, add up to another 1/4 cup of oil.
Toss your desired amount of dressing dressing with the kale and apples. We prefer a pretty heavy dose of this dressing on a kale salad (2 to 3 tablespoons per serving).