Kale Salad

The Cowgirl Gourmet was inspired to recreate this recipe from a dish at Lulu Wilson in Aspen, Colorado

This salad is amazing. I wanted to cancel my appetizer and tell the waiter to just bring me another salad, but I didn't. Five years later, the actual recipe passed my way via an industry magazine. While I do like my version, please review the notes below for the Lulu Wilson salad recipe. Or so they say...

Serves 4

2/3 bunch of kale, about 4 cups

½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated, plus more for garnish

1/3 cup currants (or other dried fruit, such as cherries, cranberries, raisins)

1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted (or other nuts, such as walnuts, pumpkin seeds, pecans)

Juice of one lemon

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

Carefully remove the leaves from the stem and wash and dry thoroughly. Julienne or chiffonade the kale leaves and put in a large salad bowl. Add Parmesan and currants and toss.

*In a separate bowl, slowly add the evoo to the juice of one lemon and create an emulsion. Add salt and pepper and stir. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss to combine. You want the leaves to be coated, but not super wet, so if you need to (depending on how much kale you used), make a little more dressing and add to coat.

Add the pine nuts that are still warm, as they will help to wilt the salad. Toss thoroughly and refrigerate up to one hour.

As it sits, it marinates and becomes truly spectacular. Before serving, toss thoroughly again and taste. You may want to add a little more of something (lemon juice, evoo, currants, Parm or toasted pine nuts) if one area of flavor is feeling flat.  Grate a bit more Parm over the top for presentation and garnish and serve.

*NOTE--In September of 2012, the actual recipe from the restaurant appeared in one of the industry culinary magazines I receive. Yes, that's right--five years after my trip, the recipe lands in my lap. Here's the way they make the salad for just one serving:

2 oz. kale

2 Tablespoons evoo

1 Tablespoon lemon juice

1/4 cup currants

1/4 cup Parmesan

1/4 cup pine nuts

Put kale and olive oil in a bowl and toss by hand. Add lemon juice and toss again. Add currants, Parmesan and pine nuts and toss by hand until mixture is soft. Taste and adjust quantities if needed. Serve on a chilled plate.