What do you do to pamper yourself? Many people will say manicures, pedicures, facials, and massages and hey we think everyone deserves pampering now and again. But we're here to remind you that your vegetables should be pampered as well (what the heck!?). No we're not going crazy but you might go crazy for raw kale once you try it massaged. Still wondering what massaged kale actually is? Ready more below before you get to the recipe for this stunning salad.
Kale can be prepared in many ways: steamed, sautéed, baked, and one of our favorites, massaged. So why do we want you to massage your kale? Kale is a tough, high fiber green. When untreated, kale has a bitter taste and can be on the chewier side. By massaging kale with olive oil and sea salt, the cellulose (fiber) begins to break down which may aid in digestion and absorption of nutrients and lighten up the flavor. Massaged kale leaves will become a deep green color and take on a soft and silky texture making it much more palatable and enjoyable raw (or at least we think so). And you know how much we love our raw foods! So before you give up on raw kale because it tastes too "green" please try it pampered/massaged and see what you think. Also a note about the cheese we chose for this salad. Paneer is a fresh, unsalted white cheese common in Indian cuisine. What is unique about paneer is that it won't melt under high heat like most other cheeses and therefore lends itself to frying, toasting, and using in hot soups and dishes. You should be able to find paneer at your local market or ethnic grocery store. If not you can always substitute with another version of frying cheese such as Greek saganaki or "bread cheese". Bread cheese is native to Finland and Sweden as juustalepia but versions are made in the U.S., a brand we see commonly is Brun-Uusto (you can find out more here). Okay so enough with the cheese talk, who's ready to pamper their vegetables?
Paneer-Peach-Pepita Kale Salad
PREP TIME: 15 mins
TOTAL TIME: 20 mins
Servings: 4 small or 2 large salads
1 bunch organic raw kale
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
6 oz paneer cheese
1 Tbsp ghee
1 organic peach
1/4 cup pepitas
Coconut Balsamic Dressing
1/4 cup extral virgin olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup coconut sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/8 tsp cracked black pepper
Wash, de-stem and chop kale leaves and place in a large bowl. Drizzle 1 Tbsp olive oil over kale and sprinkle with sea salt. Using your hands, begin to massage olive oil and salt onto the kale until leaves are soft and dark green. Set aside. Add 1 Tbsp ghee to a medium sauté pan and allow to melt, making sure to cover the entire bottom of the pan. Cube paneer and add to hot saute pan. Sprinkle paneer with salt and pepper and pan fry for about 2 minutes on each side until golden brown. Turn heat off and set cooked paneer aside. Wash and slice peach into thin segments. For the dressing, combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar, coconut sugar, salt, pepper, and garlic in a bowl. Whisk ingredients together until a thick dressing is formed. To assemble the salad, combine massaged kale, cooked paneer, and sliced peaches, sprinkle with 1/2 cup pepitas, and drizzle coconut balsamic dressing over the top*. Serve and enjoy!
*Note that you may not use all the dressing depending on how dressed you like your salad - leftover can be saved in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Now weren't we right? Massaged kale has actually changed your life hasn't it? We hope you share this kale secret with everyone you know and keep pampering your vegetables. Though we think this salad is a perfect combination of ingredients, we know that massaged kale will be great with any other fresh salads you dream up this summer.
Jess and Cecelia
Jess and Cecelia welcome you to our kitchen. We are fun-loving and passionate foodies working to make the world a healthier, happier place one plant based recipe at a time.