Kale Salad with Crispy Breadcrumbs and Lemon
There's an awesome restaurant here in Bozeman called Blackbird Kitchen. I love sitting at the cozy bar watching the pizzas sizzling in the wood oven and I long for the days of being "on the line". Each time I dine there I order the Kale Salad. When I eat it, I close my eyes and just taste, trying to catch its flavor profiles. One day I talked to the salad guy.... "Massage the Kale.", he whispered to me . MASSAGE THE KALE!!!! Of course! So, with this secret, I set out to recreate, what I think, is one of my Kale masterpieces. A copycat version~ But, I think I nailed it.
NOTE: The only labor-ish part of this recipe is the breadcrumbs~ Please don't skip it!!! DO NOT use store bought~ it's NOT the same! It's so worth it. Don't you trust me?
- 1/2 loaf/ 6-7 slices Crusty Bread such as Artisan Sourdough, ciabatta, or Levain
- 1/2 cup Olive Oil
- Salt and Pepper
- 1 Bunch Curly Kale stems removed and thinly sliced or julienned
- 1/4 cup Lemon infused oil or Extra Virgin Olive oil with juice of half of a lemon
- 1/2 tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes or to your heat preference
- Juice of 1/2 lemon whole lemon if using just Extra Virgin oil
- 1 clove Garlic thinly sliced
- Grana Padano or Parmesan for garnish
For the Breadcrumbs:
heat oven to 300
Line a baking sheet with parchment
Cut bread into 1 " cubes and toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper
Spread on the baking sheet and bake until very golden, dry and crispy about 30-40 minutes
Allow to cool completely
Pulse in a food processor, 1 cup at a time to create a large breadcrumbs. dumping into bowl after each batch.
For the Kale~and to finish salad:
Remove Kale stems and julienne (cut into strips) the kale leaves and set aside in a large bowl.
Drizzle the Kale with the 3 Tablespoons of oil , a pinch of salt, and rub together with finger tips and massage for 3 minutes ~ more the better.
In a large Salad bowl combine the lemon oil, sliced garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper and whisk.
Add the Kale and toss the dressing and kale together, sprinkle with 1/2 cup of bread crumbs and toss again, and turn the salad on a gorgeous platter.
Grate the Grana Padano on top. serve
Save the Extra Breadcrumbs in a ziplock and store in cool dry place or freezer!