Leopold’s Kale Salad with Currants and Pine Nuts

Kale Salad w/ Toasted Pine Nuts, Currant, Dates, Garlic and Parmesan in a Honey Citrus Vinaigrette | www.whiskeyandchanel.com

The first kale salad I ever had was at Leopold’s Kafe & Konditorei in Georgetown in Washington, D.C. and it had me hooked on the first bite.

Now, I’m talking back in the day before kale was “cool”…before the curly greens fronds were trending on twitter and clogging up Pinterest boards, this kale salad stood strong on the menu. There was no social influence on my appreciation for this sweet, tart and nutty green concoction. It was just awesome. Like, f*cking awesome.

The combination of nutty kale and toasted pine nuts, complimented by sweet dates and little currants, with the bite of garlic chips and freshly shaved parmesan, all dressed a sweet citrus vinaigrette is untouchable. That first bite sealed the deal and so began my love affair with kale. 

Kale Salad w/ Toasted Pine Nuts, Currant, Dates, Garlic and Parmesan in a Honey Citrus Vinaigrette | www.whiskeyandchanel.com

Now you can be damn sure every time I’m back in town I stop at Leopold’s to enjoy a kale salad with mom, but in the mean time, the in-between time, I always need a fix. So here it is, my craving killer, my very own version of Leopold’s infamous kale salad. You’re going to want to get acquainted.

Serves 2. Or one, if you’re me and don’t share well.

*Scroll to bottom for printable recipe*

PROCESS:

First you’ll want to get your kale ready. Remove the stems from your kale and chop into thin strips. THIS IS IMPORTANT. One of the most attractive features about this kale salad is the finely shredded leaves. They absorb the dressing better and provide a better texture to the salad. Plus it’s more manageable to eat. Kale can be seriously awkward in large pieces.

Kale Salad w/ Toasted Pine Nuts, Currant, Dates, Garlic and Parmesan in a Honey Citrus Vinaigrette | www.whiskeyandchanel.com

Go ahead and mix up your dressing, because we want the shredded kale to soak in the dressing for at least 5 minutes prior to assembly the salad. This allows the dressing to soak into the leaves and also will make them a bit more tender and awesome.

Combine all dressing ingredients and whisk vigorously until well combined. Coat kale leaves with dressing and set aside, tossing every now and again to coat evenly.

Now it’s time to prep your pine nuts and garlic.

Kale Salad w/ Toasted Pine Nuts, Currant, Dates, Garlic and Parmesan in a Honey Citrus Vinaigrette | www.whiskeyandchanel.com

For the toasted pine nuts, simply heat nuts in a dry fry pan on medium-low heat, tossing often, until lightly browned and aromatic, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.

In the same fry pan, heat canola oil over medium heat. For the garlic chips, slice cloves into slivers and lightly fry in oil until lightly browned, 3-5 minutes. Set aside on paper towel.

Kale Salad w/ Toasted Pine Nuts, Currant, Dates, Garlic and Parmesan in a Honey Citrus Vinaigrette | www.whiskeyandchanel.com Kale Salad w/ Toasted Pine Nuts, Currant, Dates, Garlic and Parmesan in a Honey Citrus Vinaigrette | www.whiskeyandchanel.com

Now, combine dressed kale with toasted pine nuts, garlic chips, dates, and currants. Top with shaved parmesan and chow down.

Kale Salad w/ Toasted Pine Nuts, Currant, Dates, Garlic and Parmesan in a Honey Citrus Vinaigrette | www.whiskeyandchanel.com

Now, do you feel that? That warm and fuzzy feeling? That’s love. Embrace it.

And if you’re ever in Washington, D.C. make sure to stop by Kafe Leopold and try the original.

Kale Salad w/ Toasted Pine Nuts, Currant, Dates, Garlic and Parmesan in a Honey Citrus Vinaigrette | www.whiskeyandchanel.com

Cheers!

Leopold’s Kale Salad

  • Servings: 2
  • Time: 20mins
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Kale Salad w/ Toasted Pine Nuts, Currant, Dates, Garlic and Parmesan in a Honey Citrus Vinaigrette | www.whiskeyandchanel.com

INGREDIENTS:

Salad 

2 cups finely shredded kale (2-3 leaves)

2 Tbsp toasted pine nuts

2  Tbsp pitted dates (sliced, about 4)

2 Tbsp dried currants

2 Tbsp freshly shaved parmesan

3 garlic cloves

2 Tbsp canola oil (olive works too)

Honey Citrus Dressing 

1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar (champagne or white wine work too)

1 tsp honey

Zest of 1/2 lemon

Juice of 1/2 lemon

PROCESS:

First you’ll want to get your kale ready. Remove the stems from your kale and chop into thin strips. THIS IS IMPORTANT. One of the most attractive features about this kale salad is the finely shredded leaves. They absorb the dressing better and provide a better texture to the salad. Plus it’s more manageable to eat. Kale can be seriously awkward in large pieces.

Go ahead and mix up your dressing, because we want the shredded kale to soak in the dressing for at least 5 minutes prior to assembly the salad. This allows the dressing to soak into the leaves and also will make them a bit more tender and awesome.

Combine all dressing ingredients and whisk vigorously until well combined. Coat kale leaves with dressing and set aside, tossing every now and again to coat evenly.

Now it’s time to prep your pine nuts and garlic.

For the toasted pine nuts, simply heat nuts in a dry fry pan on medium-low heat, tossing often, until lightly browned and aromatic, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.

In the same fry pan, heat canola oil over medium heat. For the garlic chips, slice cloves into slivers and lightly fry in oil until lightly browned, 3-5 minutes. Set aside on paper towel.

Now, combine dressed kale with toasted pine nuts, garlic chips, dates, and currants. Top with shaved parmesan and chow down.

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