Kale Slaw For All

By • July 16, 2012 12 Comments

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Author Notes: In my family, all food falls into one of two categories, food that unites or food that divides. Topping the uniting list includes kale, broccoli, beef, fish, and spaghetti. On the dividing side, there is egg, cheese, chicken, curry, tomato and peanut butter. He eats this but not that. She eats that but not this. Our overlaps are few, so I like to take advantage of them whenever I can. Thankfully, with kale on all of our palates, we have a robust lacinato plant in one of our raised beds and it is a staple in our weekly CSA box. We all love cooked kale, whether in stews or roasted into chips or smoky and blistered from the grill. However, with the heat and humidity of summer in full swing, I have been experimenting with raw preparations. I tried a raw kale salad with an almond dressing that despite having an intriguing ingredient list (almonds, maple syrup, apple cider vinegar, garlic, ginger, Dijon) tasted flat to my palate. Having recently discovered Amanda’s Chicken Salad (http://food52.com/recipes/4160_chicken_salad), I thought smoked almonds in a dressing might be the punch of flavor I was looking for. I decided to use lime because I had them on hand, and anyway, why should lemon get all the dressing attention?

Since this salad needs to be refrigerated for at least 4 hours prior to serving, make sure to use lacinato (also known as Toscano or dinosaur kale) for its earthy flavor and ability to hold up to the dressing. Thinly slicing lacinato is easily accomplished by stacking de-ribbed leaves and using a sharp knife. If using baby lacinato kale, de-ribbing is not necessary. Simply wash, dry and slice.

Serves 4-6 as a side

  • 10 cups thinly sliced ribbons lacinato kale (washed and thoroughly dried, thick ribs removed)
  • 1/4 cup smoked whole almonds
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Aleppo pepper
  • salt to taste, if desired
  • 1/4 cup whole natural almonds (for serving)
  1. Place thinly sliced kale ribbons in a large bowl.
  2. In a blender, combine smoked almonds and water. Puree until almonds are pulverized and you have a thin paste, stopping to scrape down sides with a spatula as needed.
  3. Add mayonnaise and puree until combined. Scrape down sides of blender and add lime juice and then vinegar in two additions, pureeing and scraping between each. Add Aleppo pepper and puree one last time. Taste for salt (since the smoked almonds add a good amount of salt, I’ve never had to add additional salt) and add if desired.
  4. Pour dressing over mixture, scraping out the blender to get every drop. Using your spatula, carefully fold the dressing into the kale. Stir slaw a few times, cloaking the greens in dressing. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate, at least four hours and up to overnight. Be sure to take the chill off slaw before serving. When ready to serve, toast almonds until fragrant in a dry pan over medium heat. Make sure to stir mixture continuously to prevent burning. Transfer to a plate and let almonds cool. Rough slice almonds and scatter over salad. Serve and enjoy.

More Great Recipes: Vegetables|Salads|Side Dishes|Ribs|Kale

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Comments (12) Questions (0)


about 3 years ago healthierkitchen

Sounds delicious! Your kale plant is huge and the kid is pretty cute too :)


about 3 years ago gingerroot

Hi HK! I just discovered your comment a month late...thank you!


about 3 years ago aargersi

Abbie is a trusted source on General Cooking.

This looks so good, and healthy, and it is way cool that both kids like KALE!


about 3 years ago gingerroot

Thanks, a! It's a little victory that I celebrate (by serving my family kale) often.


about 3 years ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

Wonderful! What a lovely combination of flavors. The thought to use smoky almonds is totally inspired!


about 3 years ago gingerroot

Thanks, Em! Smoky, tart and a little salty, I could not stop eating it.


about 3 years ago gingerroot

Thanks, meganvt01! I was definitely thinking of the contrast of smoke with the dark, earthy flavor of lacinato kale. I even tried adding grilled eggplant to up the smoke factor, and while I liked the flavor, texturally I preferred the slaw without it.


about 3 years ago savorthis

Wow- this does look good. I have been using nuts in a lot of things lately and was just eyeing the smoked almonds at the store yesterday. Husband is a huge fan of aleppo and three year old JUST started eating leafy greens a couple weeks ago...especially the ones from our garden...so maybe this can be a uniter for us too. Can't wait to try- I bet it would good next to some simple grilled or pan-seared fish like trout.


about 3 years ago gingerroot

Thanks so much, savorthis! I love your suggestion of grilled or pan-seared trout - please let me know what you think if you try this.


about 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Sounds wonderful, I think the smoky almonds in the dressing are the perfect compliment to the kale.


about 3 years ago gingerroot

Thank you, sdebrango! I've actually never been a big fan of mayonnaise but I'm beginning to appreciate its ability to serve as a base for countless flavor combinations.


about 3 years ago meganvt01

This looks awesome! smoky almonds and kale sounds amazing.