You could call this "Kale Salad with Cranberries and Pumpkin Seeds" because, of course, that's what it is. You could also, and maybe more accurately, call it "The Kale Salad That K.C. Brings to Everything" because it's also that. You can make it in advance and it just gets better, and everyone's all: "hey, this is delicious!" and I'm all: "dude, I know. That's why I brought it." The folks from CA Grown asked me to share some of my favorite recipes using some of the 400+ specialty crops grown in Golden State, so I'm sharing this one, along with these Edible Flower Pistachio Shortbread Cookies and one more coming up! It's just in time for the holidays, which means you have time to make this the salad you bring to everything too.
Choosing dried fruit for your kale salad:
I used cranberries here, which is the only ingredient not from California (well, beside salt. But you could actually get that from CA too.) Sometimes I use golden raisins instead, or one of my favorite combos is chopped dried apricots and pistachios. Feel free to switch out the mix-ins as you please, and through in a little Feta or Parmesan if you're into that kind of thing.
You can make it in advance:
Since kale holds up well, this salad keeps for 2-3 days in the fridge, so it's great for batch cooking/meal prepping/leftover lunch taking. Top it with a little chicken and you're ready to ride.
How to get kale tender enough to eat raw: the massage is the key to great kale salad.
The kale in this recipe gets a heavy rub with olive oil and lemon juice, and needs to marinate for at least tens minutes. The lemon juice + EVOO coating isn't just delicious dressing - they work together to tenderize the kale leaves.
I often make the kale portion of this salad the night before serving or in the morning, and mix the cranberries and seeds in later.
Kale Salad with Cranberries and Pumpkin Seeds
- 1 bunch of kale stems removed
- Juice of one lemon
- 2 tablespoon Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 tablespoon pumpkin seeds
- 2-3 tablespoon dried cranberries or other dried fruit
- ½ teaspoon each, sea salt & black pepper
- Cut kale into pieces and place in a large bowl. Drizzle olive oil and lemon juice over kale and massage into leaves until thoroughly coated. Allow to marinate for at least 10 minutes (15 is better).
- Toss with nuts, cranberries, and salt and pepper. Taste and add additional seasoning if needed. Enjoy!
Sponsored by California Grown. All opinions are my own. But you knew that.
photography by: James Collier