Lacinato Kale and Mint Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing
October 24, 2014 § 81 Comments
Admittedly, we don’t eat much kale in our house, and really for no other reason than I just don’t notice it when I’m at the market (as if it doesn’t exist). Humph! It’s the season for kale right now and I have been noticing towering stalks growing in gardens while walking around the neighborhood, and needless to say, sparking my eagerness to pick some up next trip to the market.
I found this recipe on Food 52 and only made one minor change by switching out the walnuts for pecans. It’s out of this world delicious. Now I have a reason to plant lacinato kale in my garden next season. Perfect hearty salad for this time of year.
I n g r e d i e n t s
- 1 bunch of lacinato kale, chopped very small, almost minced
- 1 cup fresh mint, minced
- 1 cup pecans, chopped
spicy peanut dressing
- 3 tablespoons smooth natural peanut butter
- 3-6 tablespoons warm water (to achieve desired consistency)
- 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon fresh garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, peeled and minced
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon dried red chili flakes
Super recipe for a super food. What a fantastic way to use up the last of the season’s mint, as well!
True! I used up my last handful of mint for this dish. Well, there is still mint out these but it has seen better days. I really had to forage to get a usable handful. :)
I have everything except the mint and that can be remedied. My kale is washed, chopped and ready to go. It’s like I was just waiting for this recipe.
Oh good! I love it when it works out like that. Actually that’s what happened to me when I brought the kale home. I googled lacinato kale and found this recipe. I had everything on hand! You are going to love it.
I love spicy peanut dressing! And I love the combination you’ve put together. Yum… :)
Thank you Serena. The pomegranate molasses was a wonderful ingredient for the spicy peanut dressing, as well as fresh ginger; flavors I have never combined before. Delicious.
The dressing sounds wonderful, love kale. Wondering where you found the pomegranate molasses?
Hi Cheri. I bought the pomegranate molasses at a market here in Seattle, called Metropolitan Market. It’s an upscale market with a huge variety of foodstuffs. Do you have a similar market in your area? Perhaps you could order some online through Amazon. :)
This salad looks like a great use of kale. I usually saute kale with onions and garlic and peppers when I get it in my CSA box, but I ate raw kale salad with miso dressing once and loved the texture and flavors. I think I would like this spicy peanut dressing, too. Printed, and will try it next week when I get my next batch of kale!
I do the same Ngan. Always cook kale rather than eat it raw. Whole Foods sells a pretty good raw kale salad with tahini dressing in their deli. I’ve always thought if they were to chop the kale into smaller pieces it would be much better. I practically minced the kale in this recipe and I think it really makes a difference, especially when eating it raw. The dressing is fabulous! I know you will love it.
My love for kale knows no bounds, but I do wish I had more variety in recipes. This one will help.Thanks!
Oh good! This recipe just might make it to the top of your kale list. :)
I have both kale and mint in my garden–I will give this salad a try! Thank you for posting!
Thank you for commenting! :) Glad you have the two main ingredients for the salad. It’s fabulous and hope you enjoy the dressing…
This looks spectacular! You have just answered the “what to do with yet more kale from our CSA” question. Also, pomegranate molasses in peanut dressing is brilliant – can’t wait to try it :)
While I was mincing the kale I thought about tossing it with the same type of dressing as a cole slaw. I think that would be wonderful too! Hope you get a chance to try the peanut dressing, it’s fantastic.
This just sounds so delicious. I love Kale and adding Mint and Peanut just sounds a genius idea!!
Beautiful salad, I love the dressing. I really love kale salads, must try this one.
I have a newfound love for kale salad. I’m looking forward to trying different combinations for the dressings and different toss in ingredients too. Have a great weekend Suzanne.
Hmmm, I have mint and kale in our garden. Another pairing I haven’t thought of!
This has been the year for mint in my cooking. Mint is the new basil! :) I had to start using it because it’s taking over the side yard and I love it!
It does take over the garden. We have ours separated from everything else.
Had a very large amount of kale so I used the whole dressing. Added seeds from a whole pomegranate. You were right. Delicious! Very spicy, but leftovers will be more tame by tomorrow. I tasted the kale before dressing it and it tasted vile. Wondered if it was going to be a problem. Nope. With the dressing it is wonderful! Imagine that.
Pomegranate seeds…great idea. Hope it wasn’t too spicy, but it sound as though you enjoyed it! :) Thank you for the feedback, so happy to hear you tried it.
Now that I can get Cavolo nero I wouldn’t mind giving this a try. Particularly for the dressing! Haven’t used pomegranate molasses in too many years. And should be able to buy it in the International store next week. Raw kale?! I think I’ll do like you and shred it very, very fine! Oh, and mind the mint. It’s practically impossible to get rid of it. Hopefully nothing else grows well in your side yard. :) As that’s the best place to plant it. Either that or in concrete!
No kidding about the mint! Even though it’s only on the side yard I find it sprouting up in other areas not even in close proximity. This is certainly a kale with many alias’.. lacinato, dinosaur, tuscan and now Cavolo nero! :) Hadn’t heard it called Cavolo nero before. Regarding eating raw kale…check this out.
I didn’t do this, however, have had a raw kale salad made this way and it really made a difference. The peanut dressing actually softened the kale after it sat for a bit. Honestly, couldn’t stop eating it!
This salad looks so good–and the spicy peanut dressing! sounds wonderful!
When I saw the peanut dressing recipe I knew instantly it was going to be delicious. Especially on the hearty kale. I can’t even remember what I served with it that night for dinner…that’s how good it is!
Oooh I am a Food 52 follower too! I sometimes enter the contests if I have anything contest-worthy. I’ve made it to the Community Picks once, though! Never hurts to try… BTW, lovely Kale salad! If only I can get my family to eat it. :)
I have thought about entering Food 52 contests for the fun of it. I always loved the idea of entering a recipe contest at the county fair. I lived in a very small California town and the fair was the the event of the year. As a child I would spend time walking around the recipe contest area looking at the ribbons on the pies and cakes. Yeah, that and the farming animals! Forget the rides and coin tosses… :)
Now THAT’S a kale salad! You got the pretty stuff, too :-) Hadn’t thought to put peanut butter together with kale, but I get it. Yum!
The first time I laid eyes on lacinato kale I couldn’t imagine eating it. Not only is it thick and would (in my mind) require cooking the heck out of it but it looked like alligator skin…or dinosaur, rather. :) And here I am years later eating it raw…. Yum is right.
Another fab vegie idea Seana! I’m not a big fan of kale but spicy peanut dressing could win me over…
Have to admit, I am not a huge kale fan myself. I enjoy it if it is dressed up or even roasted crispy. This dressing was a refreshing way to eat it and I bet if the kale was massaged it would even be better. :)
Oh, this sounds great! I always have kale around, usually I blanch it and sauté it up with tons of garlic and chili flake. When I eat it raw, it’s mostly tossed with a lemon/Parmesan type of dressing. I love the idea of a peanut dressing — especially if it’s got some heat!
Sounds like some wonderful ways to prepare kale. Especially like the sound of the lemon/Parmesan dressing. I need to incorporate more kale into my diet! I’ll try your idea with the lemon dressing…
I can only get rough curly kale where I live, but this looks so delicious; I love the use of mint to freshen it up, and the tangy and spicy pomegranate dressing sounds fantastic!
Yes I imagine curly kale wouldn’t work well as a raw salad. I have only prepared curly kale in the oven “crispy” style. What do you think about blanching the kale and tossing with this spicy peanut dressing and fresh mint? Now I am curious.
I have eaten curly kale as a salad (http://tortore.wordpress.com/2013/11/22/masse-ta-salade-ou-ma-premiere-fois-avec-du-chou-frise-aka-kale/ ), and it was quite good. But I do enjoy it blanched as well, and I bet it would work with your dressing… I’ll think about it!
Oh yes! I remember this Darya. I remembered it right away when I saw the salted capers. Glad to revisit the post, I’ll pick up salted capers and try your dressing, as well as massaging the kale…
Such a beautiful dish Seana! With some wonderful pictures!!… I just love Kale!
Thank you for the picture complement! You wouldn’t believe how many photo’s I had to take of that kale salad just to get one good one. I almost scratched the post because the salad was not very photogenic. After I tasted it I just had to post it and settled on this one. :)
Well Seana, you really made it very photogenic! :-) I love all the pictures…but the one with the ingredients is my favourite! really beautiful!
The dressing sounds fab!
It really is… thank you!
Wow Seana! I think I can eat any salad with that peanut dressing. Yumm
I thought the same thing. Spring rolls too? Yes!
That sounds effing delicious. I love a good kale salad and that dressing looks like it would make it sing!
Behold the mighty kale. Loving it in many forms right now and this looks lovely.
Ha! I need to jump on the mighty kale bandwagon and start experimenting. I tend to get my leafy greens in lettuce and spinach form.
This salad looks so good :)
thank you! :)
I find the mint here totally interesting and a spicy peanut dressing always calls out to me.
The mint is spot on here in this salad. The dressing would be fabulous on just about anything! :) Nice to hear from you….
I started to read the title and my heart sank at the word Kale then as my eyes moved across spicy peanut dressing made it soar. I am not a big fan of kale but you might have just convinced me to try it!
Hi Maria, I’m not a big fan of kale myself and especially the thought of eating it raw. I was pleasantly surprised how much I like this. The dressing really softened up the hearty leaves and the flavors in the dressing were outstanding! Hope you give it a go…or make the dressing for another green you enjoy. :)
Hey Seana– I’ve made an apple kale several times lately– and this looks super too!! I love the idea of the peanut dressing– anything peanutty is delicious and I’m just imagining it dredging the kale. going to try this soon! thanks.
If you like a little spicy you’ll love this dressing on the kale. The dressing was nice and thick too which I thought was wonderful with the heartiness of the kale. Hope you try it! :)
I’m sure I will– I’ll let you know how it comes out Seana!
I need this in my life right now…..I’m hungry just thinking about this salad!
Can’t wait to try this salad in the next week or two Seana. I particularly love the sound of the dressing – yum! :)
I think you will love this salad Margot. It’s a bit spicy with a teaspoon of red chili flakes….that’s the way we like it! You may need to dial it back a bit. It’s fabulous though!
Amazingly, I have all these ingredients, although the kale and mint still have to be picked. Bookmarking this to make tomorrow.
Lucky you! Nice you have kale and mint growing. How nice to be able to just go out and pick your salad. :) I must plant kale next year!
What a great recipe! I’ve been looking for good ways to spice up my veggies and this hits the mark. Mint in salads is one of my new things. The dressing looks amazing. Do you make your own pomegranate molasses? I can’t wait to make this. Maybe tonight.
I have really taken a liking to mint this past year. I wasn’t very adventurous until I had so much of it in my yard I had to find things to do with it (other than mojito’s!) I don’t make my own pomegranate molasses. You?
I tried to make it once and it was a failure. I’ll try again though! It must be so lovely having mint grow in your yard. I used to growing up, but alas, the city :\
Mint just wasn’t used in our cooking when I was a boy an I’ve been very slow to use it now that I’m (ahem) a bit older. Seeing salads like this one though, and that dressing, makes me want to go out and buy some mint. Your salad really does look amazing.
I wouldn’t imagine mint to be used much in traditional Italian cooking! Honestly, the only think my mom ever did with mint while I was growing up was serve mint jelly with lamb, and she used store bought mint jelly! :) I love it now! Always great to see you John!
such a simple yet amazing looking salad. You can’t go wrong with fresh produce. I usually make kale chips but I’ll def try this.
I usually make kale chips too. I love kale chips! Hope you get a chance to try this, it’s a keeper recipe, for sure.
I just had this wonderful salad for lunch – followed your directions to the letter minus the water, which once I blended everything together, thought the consistency was fine. A total success and I will be making it again. Thanks.
My day is officially made! Thank you for letting me know you tried it and enjoyed. I couldn’t stop eating it. That was a week ago and now I want to make it again…Maybe my peanut butter was a bit thicker than your’s. :)
Or maybe I put just a tad more vinegar and soy sauce in. :)
Good for you kale in an absolutely delicious sounding salad…yes!
Thank you Karen for stopping in! :)
Mmmmm I love mint and kale together!
This sounds divine!!! <3
We eat an embarrassing amount of kale- scotch curled, red russian, lacinato and I think a couple of mixes of the above that cross pollinated and self sowed… but anyways- I recently tried a cashew dressing but I’ve not tried peanut sauce. Thank you for introducing something new and original- I obviously missed it over at Food 52.