We’ve been very busy in the macnamania household with family visiting, project working, and just general adjustment to life with a first year resident. At the end of the past few days I think all three of us have been exhausted. But we’re getting by pretty well, and doing our best to enjoy the summer.
We’ve been eating a lot of kale salad. Seriously. All the kale salad. I’m kind of obsessed. And so I thought I’d share our most recent fave. And it’s an easy peasy way to enjoy all that summer produce out there.
Strawberry and Kale Salad
Serves two people who are serious about their kale salads
1 bunch kale (any kind will do, choose your current fave)
10 -12 strawberries
1-2 oz extra-sharp white cheddar (we do live in WI now, afterall)
a handful (1/4 cup maybe)l of slivered almonds (whole or sliced would work fine too)
De-stem and chop the kale. I like to chop my kale in thin strips. Chewing raw kale works your jaw muscles, so smaller pieces is a bit easier to manage. Drizzle chopped kale with balsamic vinaigrette (see below) and massage dressing into the kale leaves with your fingers. Yes it’s messy, yes it’s worth it.
Dice the strawberries and add to kale. Grate the cheese, or I like to cut it into 1/4″ cubes and toss it into the bowl. Toast the almonds until they are starting to brown. Let the almonds cool for a couple minutes before adding to the salad. Mix well. Add more balsamic vinaigrette if needed. Eat.
The Only Balsamic Vinaigrette Recipe You’ll Ever Need
makes 1.5 cups of dressing
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup of your favorite brown mustard
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 garlic clove, pressed or very very finely chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients in a jar with a lid. Shake well to mix. Taste, if it’s at all “meh” add more salt, mix and taste again. The salt is the key to making all the flavors meld together. It will go from tasting like balsamic vinegar to tasting like salad dressing with the addition of a bit more salt.
Fun fact: the mustard acts as an emulsifier, so it holds the oil and vinegar mixture together.
I keep a jar of this stuff in my fridge pretty much all the time. It keeps well and it’s good on pretty much every salad ever.
Note that olive oil has a pretty high solidification temperature, so it will start to get thick in the refrigerator. Take it out a little bit before you are going to dress a salad so that it can melt back into the dressing. Or swirl the jar under a warm running faucet to melt quicker.