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12721Shredded Kale Salad w Pecan Parmesan&Cranberries

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  • arlen baden
    Jan 11, 2014

      The Best Shredded Kale Salad


      bestkalesalad 3668   The Best Shredded Kale Salad

      Whenever I’m in the Phoenix area, I make a point to dine at True Food Kitchen. For those who aren’t familiar with True Food, the famous Dr. Andrew Weil (along with restaurateur Sam Fox) opened this restaurant in 2008. There are now several locations. The entire menu is based around Dr. Weil’s Anti-Inflammatory Diet and food pyramid with an emphasis on local and organic food whenever possible. And I can tell you, every time I’ve been the restaurant is absolutely packed (and it’s a huge restaurant!).

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      [image source: True Food Kitchen]

      Everything I’ve had at this restaurant has been ah-mazing. Even though it’s not a vegan or vegetarian restaurant, I always find a few great options on the menu. My last visit was no different. I ordered The Autumn Ingredient salad and I was blown away. It’s bursting with roasted squash, brussels sprouts, pomegranate, cauliflower, mulberries, and white beans. It was the first time I’ve had roasted pomegranate seeds and I can tell you I’ll be doing this real soon. The only thing that I didn’t care for was the Horseradish Vinaigrette that came with it (but I’m not a horseradish person, so what do I know).

      Also intriguing, was my mom’s Tuscan Kale Salad – I love the idea of shredded kale (it just seems so much easier to chew!). The shredded kale was tossed in a simple lemon garlic dressing with a few handfuls of breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese thrown in. I decided I had to make a vegan version of this salad as soon as possible. I knew it would make the perfect salad starter for any holiday menu!

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      The Best Shredded Kale Salad with Pecan Parmesan and Cranberries

      Vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free
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      Inspired by a kale salad my mom enjoyed at True Food Kitchen, I knew I had to make my own vegan version as soon as I was back in my kitchen. The key to this salad is finely chopping (or shredding) the kale. The lemon garlic dressing will coat each and every tiny piece of kale, working its magical softening powers and infusing it with so much flavour. Instead of cheese, I topped the salad with my homemade toasted pecan "Parmesan" topping and a handful of dried sweetened cranberries. The result is one of the BEST ever kale salads I've tried to date. No joke. Two bunches of dinosaur kale might seem like a lot, but once it's shredded, it only makes about 8 cups and then it further reduces in volume as it marinates by almost half. If you are making this salad for more than 4 people, I suggest doubling it. I felt like I could've had half of the lot just on my own...

      4 small bowls
      Soak time
      1 hour
      Prep Time
      30 Minutes
      Cook time
      10 Minutes


      For the salad & dressing:
      • 2 medium bunches destemmed Lacinato/dinosaur kale, finely chopped (8 cups chopped)
      • 2 large garlic cloves
      • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
      • 3-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, to taste
      • 1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
      • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (just eyeball it)
      • 1-2 handfuls dried sweetened cranberries, for garnish
      For the pecan parmesan:
      • 1 cup pecan halves, toasted
      • 1.5 tablespoons nutritional yeast
      • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
      • 2 pinches fine grain sea salt


      1. Preheat the oven to 300F. Spread the pecans onto a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 8-10 minutes until fragrant and lightly golden.
      2. Remove the stems from the kale and discard (you can save for smoothies if you are hard core!). Finely chop the kale leaves (the smaller, the better!).
      3. Wash the kale and spin dry. Place dried kale into a large bowl.
      4. For the dressing: In a mini food processor, process the garlic until minced. Now add the lemon, oil, salt, and pepper and process until combined. Adjust to taste, if desired. Pour the dressing onto the kale and mix it into the kale with your hands or toss with spoons. Keep mixing for about 1 minute to ensure everything is coated perfectly.
      5. For the pecan parm: Rinse out the mini processor and pat dry. Add the pecans into the processor and process until the pecans are the size of peas or a bit larger. Now add in the nutritional yeast, oil, and salt and process again until it's a coarse crumb. Be sure not to over-process - we still want a nice crunchy texture here, not powder.
      6. Sprinkle the pecan Parmesan all over the salad. Toss on a handful or two of dried cranberries. Wrap and place in the fridge for 30-60 minutes to soften. I tried letting this salad sit overnight in the fridge and I greatly preferred the flavour of the salad served the day of, so I don't recommend making this salad the day before and letting it sit in the fridge overnight.
      Note: 1) Instead of a mini processor, you can chop/whisk the dressing and pecan "parmesan" by hand. 2) For a nut-free version, try using breadcrumbs instead of pecans.

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      Like I said, I felt like I could’ve polished off the entire salad on my own. It’s that good. I hope it’ll convince you to give kale a shot if it’s not already on your regular rotation!


      Read more: http://ohsheglows.com/2013/11/25/the-best-shredded-kale-salad/#ixzz2q1Oj0JAz