Much like this farmer (Audra here), in 90 degree heat, summer lettuce starts looking a little weepy and sun burned. There are, however, a few greens that stand up to the heat and keep on producing nutritious greens, despite the soaring temperatures. At Groundworks, durable greens like kale and chard become the sole CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) & farmer’s market greens due to their ability to take the heat.
In the kitchen, this might mean a slight shift in our summer salads. If you’ve ever tried it, you’ll know that a bowl of raw, sliced kale can be a bit… well, tough to swallow. Take those same greens, and with a little TLC, coarse kale can be transformed into a bright, tender taste of summer.
See you at the farm stand,
Massaged Kale Salad
1 bunch kale (black kale is especially good), stalks removed and discarded, leaves thinly sliced
1 lemon, juiced
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
2 teaspoons honey
Freshly ground black pepper
1 heirloom tomato, diced small (about 1 cup)
Small handful toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds), optional
In large serving bowl, add the kale, half of lemon juice, a drizzle of oil and a little kosher salt. Massage until the kale starts to soften and wilt, 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside while you make the dressing.
In a small bowl, whisk remaining lemon juice with the honey and lots of freshly ground black pepper. Stream in the 1/4 cup of oil while whisking until a dressing forms, and you like how it tastes.
Pour the dressing over the kale, and add the tomato and pepitas. Toss and serve.