Sunday, October 18, 2009

Massaged Kale Salad with Asian Pear, Smoked Gouda and Cucumber

This is one of those rare October weeks at the farmer's market where you can find summer foods like tomatoes and cucumbers alongside harbingers of fall like delicata squash and Asian pears. To take advantage of the seasonal overlap, here's another massaged kale salad! The crisp, clean taste of the cucumbers and the sweetness of the pears nicely offsets the assertiveness of the kale and gouda. If Asian pears aren't available, we've also tried this with slices of green apple with good results. Best of all, this requires no dressing beyond the olive oil used to massage the kale, making it an excellent choice for you brown-baggers who would rather not get vinaigrette all over the inside of your briefcase.

1 large bunch curly green kale, washed, de-stemmed and chopped (about 5 cups)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large Asian pear, diced
1/2 cup cubed smoked gouda
1 small Persian or English cucumber, diced

Place kale in a large bowl and drizzle with olive oil and salt. Massage the kale for a few minutes, until it breaks down and wilts. Top with pear, gouda and cucumber and enjoy!

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