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Summer Kale Salad
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Summer Kale Salad
We love kale salads, and we love vegan chef Tal Ronnen, so you can imagine our excitement when we got a sneak peek of his new book Crossroads (out this October, but available for pre-order now)—and discovered the coveted recipe for his Los Angeles restaurant's signature kale salad. Tossed with currants, pine nuts, and a lemon-thyme vinaigrette, let's just say this is one of the best kale salads we've ever had. Sure, celebrities frequent Ronnen’s eatery Crossroads Kitchen (which happens to be nominated for a 2015 Veggie Award), but this zesty salad outshines the brightest of stars.
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Serves 4
What You Need:

For the Salad:
2 bunches (about 1½ pounds) lacinato kale
½ cup dried currants
½ cup pine nuts, toasted
Salt and pepper to taste

For the Lemon-Thyme Vinaigrette:
½ small shallot, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
2 fresh thyme sprigs, leaves stripped from the stems
¼ cup white balsamic vinegar
Finely grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon agave
1½ cups extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
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What You Do:

1. For the salad, lay each kale leaf upside down one at a time on a cutting board and use a paring knife to cut down both sides of the center rib to remove. Stack a few leaves at a time, roll them into a tight cigar shape, and cut crosswise into thin ribbons (no more than 1⁄8 inch). You should have about 6 cups shredded kale.

2. Place shredded kale in a colander or salad spinner and rinse with cold water. Drain and dry well. Combine kale, currants, and pine nuts in a salad or mixing bowl.

3. For the dressing, combine the shallot, garlic, thyme, balsamic, lemon zest and juice, agave, and oil in a small mixing bowl or Mason jar and season with salt and pepper. Whisk or shake vigorously to blend. Leftover vinaigrette can be kept covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

4. Drizzle salad with vinaigrette and season with salt and pepper. Gently toss with hands to dress salad evenly, and let stand for about 10 minutes. Serve salad in a salad bowl or divide among four individual plates.

Photo by Lisa Romerein
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