In Season: Kale Salad

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Lately, in this In Season series, we're taking a look at what I take home from Crooked Sky Farms each week and see what I've done with my CSA share, or part share. This week I'm using Toscano/black/dinosaur/cavolo nero/lacinato kale.

Chow Bella readers, consider yourselves lucky. This was a last-minute, very-last-bite, so-much-better-than-it-looks photo of the salad that I assembled for my contribution to our pot luck style Christmas dinner and it's going on my permanent holiday rotation. I will also make this anytime I'm hungry, and when kale is in season.

I knew I wanted to make a version of the super-sexy "massaged" kale salad, like the one at True Food. I love this maple mustard dressing and I bathed cleaned, chopped Toscano/black/dinosaur/cavolo nero/lacinato, with orange-flavored dried cranberries and chopped candied nuts. It was so good.

Don't forget this recipe. Bookmark it, tag it, share on Facebook or do whatever you need to do to remember where to find it. All my dining guests (including myself) volunteered to be the one to scrape the bits stuck to the sides of the serving bowl onto our plates for a second helping. It's sweet, chewy, crunchy and feels good to eat because it tastes so delicious and you know your putting good stuff in your body. It's time to get ourselves back on track, people. This is a good way to get there.

Christmas-y Kale Salad

1 bunch Toscano/black/dino kale, cleaned and chopped (or however much you want)
2 handfuls dried cranberries (orange-flavored, if you can find it, are wonderful - Trader Joe's has 'em)
2 handfuls candied nuts, chopped into large bits (I like pecans, myself)
Maple Mustard Dressing, to coat (recipe follows)

Maple Mustard Dressing
¼ cup walnut oil (or another nut oil, or canola, but walnut oil is very good here)
2 tablespoons maple syrup (grade b is best)
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon coarse-grained mustard
3 tablespoons soy sauce, tamari is nice
2 pinches of salt, or to taste
couple cranks of freshly ground black pepper

Place the kale, cranberries and nuts into a large bowl. Pour the dressing ingredients into a jar with a lid and shake, shake, shake until it's all incorporated (you could also use a bowl and a whisk). Drizzle only a few tablespoons of the dressing over the kale, fruit and nuts and instead of tossing, use your hands and massage it in. If you feel like you need to add more dressing, have at it. Store the leftover dressing in the fridge and use within a week.

Place into a serving bowl, if you wish, and devour.

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