Glad to see you’re so interested in the field of leafy green education.Regardless of variety, raw kale is kind of tough, which is why we love cooking it—it holds its own and maintains integrity even in long-cooked soups, stews, and braises.But we also love eating it raw in salads, which is where that massaging process comes in.Working those greens with your hands a bit takes the edge off, and renders them tender enough to eat without cooking.You can slice them out with a knife or rip them out by running you fingers along either side of the stem.Hit those leaves with a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lemon or a splash of vinegar, and then start crunching them between your hands.You want to massage the leaves to the point where it you can feel a crisp and resistance in the bite, but aren’t struggling to tear away or chew. .
Do You Need to Massage Kale?
I don’t know about you, but if I ever find myself with enough extra time in my day to be doling out massages, my kale sure isn’t gonna grab the first spot in line!It means pretty much exactly what it sounds like it means: you grab up your would-be salad greens and give them a good rubdown, usually with some combination of olive oil, salt, and/or a bit of acid like lemon juice or vinegar.All on its own, kale (especially the curly green variety you most commonly find in grocery stores) can be pretty wily – a bit too course, bitter and poky-chewy to be really enjoyable right off the bat.Massaging the kale helps to break down the tough cell structure and gives the kale a softer texture and (some people feel) a gentler flavor, that’s more appealing in a lot of raw preparations like salads, and is supposedly easier to digest, too.If you’ve got better things to do with your time than hand out rubdowns to veggies, read on ….First of all, there are other ways to achieve basically the same outcome, of making your kale more tender and softening it for a salad or some other raw recipe.One other little problem I have with the idea of massaging kale is that I don’t want to have to figure out how much oil or vinegar or salt to leave out of a full, finished salad recipe, to account for the little bit I’ve already used in the process of giving my kale its rubdown.Smaller, confetti bits of kale are a terrific size for lots of chopped salads, perfectly textured (but not too wilted) … with no massage needed!2) In addition, kale leaves’ tough cellular structure will automatically tend to soften upon standing, once you’ve dressed your salad (like with an oil-and-salt-and-vinegar dressing combo similar to what you’d have used if you’d done the whole massage thing).Between those two methods, I find that even coarser, curly kale turns out to be exactly the right texture for raw salads.It’s still got a bit of “chew” and life to it, but it’s not too tough or bitter … a terrific backdrop for the other flavors in my kale recipes!But, remember that if you personally like your kale more wilty, you can just chop the leaves more finely or let it sit a little longer after you’ve dressed the salad!Unbeatable prices and top Cook’s Illustrated ratings convinced me to give them a try, and I’ve never looked back.It’ll turn a pile of wily kale into beautiful confetti bits in no time!It was made by a local (to me) Ohio artisan named Stu at The Custom Cutting Block. .
How to Massage Kale
Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with this super simple tutorial!Kale was one of those vegetables that were usually wilted in a soup or blended up in a smoothie.If you’ve had a kale salad and it has NOT been massaged, then I understand where you’re coming from.Eating a kale salad that has not been massaged is like shoving a handful of shredded paper into your mouth.When you massage kale before mixing it in a salad you are breaking it down so that it is easily digestible and easier to eat.Kale is a cruciferous vegetable like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and Brussel sprouts!It is antioxidant rich, packed with 200% of your daily vitamin C, contains carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, and more!Add kale into your diet and spread it throughout your menu planning!Generally, you do not need to massage baby kale because it is already tender enough that it doesn’t need to be broken down.Kale generally comes with a big thick stem that you do not want to eat.(Psssst… If you do have a furry friend at home, chop the stem into small pieces and use them as dog treats throughout the week!).When all stems are removed, chop kale into small pieces and place into a large salad bowl.When all stems are removed, chop kale into small pieces and place into a large salad bowl.Discard stem and chop kale into small pieces and place into a large salad bowl.We love massaging kale with extra virgin olive oil.Feel free to use your favorite cooking oil with a pinch of salt.As long as you coat your kale with a little oil and salt you are good to go!Decide what massaged kale salad you would like to prepare and enjoy! .
How to Soften Kale for Salad
This tutorial provides everything you need to know about how to massage kale to make delicious salads, including tips for how to do it with or without oil.Some adore its crunchy texture and strong flavor, while others find it bitter and gross.Plus, you’ll find answers to frequently asked questions and kale salad recipes.Massaging kale helps to break down its tough texture and make it more palatable.Some claim that massaged kale therefore needs to be rinsed before eating, since the bitter compounds may stay on the leaves after they have been released.In addition to massaging kale, you can reduce its bitter flavor by pairing it with acidic and sweet ingredients, such as citrus juices or vinegars in a dressing and fruits in a salad.It can be green or purple, and it’s the kind I use in the photos and videos for this post on how to soften kale.It can be green or purple, and it’s the kind I use in the photos and videos for this post on how to soften kale.I love to use this type of kale in salads that call for it shredded or cut into thin strips.I love to use this type of kale in salads that call for it shredded or cut into thin strips.You can also soften kale with lemon or another acidic ingredient, such as apple cider vinegar.On a similar note, if you are using a dressing with lemon juice or a vinegar, you can skip the step of massaging kale.Even if the recipe doesn’t call for it, consider using massaged kale to improve the dish’s texture and flavor.Prep Time: 10 mins Total Time: 10 mins Servings: 4 Calories: 47 kcal Author: Lizzie Streit, MS, RDN Equipment Mixing bowl Ingredients ▢ 1 bunch curly kale.▢ 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil sub lemon juice or apple cider vinegar Cook Mode Prevent your screen from going dark Instructions Wash the kale and pat dry.Video Notes Store massaged kale in an airtight container in the fridge for 2 to 3 days.Just let the salad sit for a half hour or more before eating so the kale has time to soften. .
How to Massage Kale
), you can get super tender and delicious kale leaves, perfect for a light salad.It reduces the bitterness of raw kale and brings out great natural flavors.Check out my Roasted Cauliflower and Kale Salad with Lemon Tahini Dressing.Follow me on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook for the latest fun updates and recipes! .
Advice For Impatient Foodies: HTF Do You Actually Massage Kale?
Without massaging the leaves beforehand, you'll end up chewing for a comical (or more likely annoying) amount of time, plus the kale will taste quite bitter.Just rip the leafy part of the kale off of the rib (discard the ribs), place the leaves in a large bowl, pour a couple glugs of olive oil on top, plus a pinch of salt, and gently knead the leaves for about 3-5 minutes, similar to how you would knead dough. .
How To Massage Kale (for a salad)
I wrote this post to help answer all those questions for you, and give you a step-by-step breakdown (and video) if you want to try massaging kale yourself.Some people had no idea what I was talking about, some were curious but weren’t sure where to begin, and someone even said their mom had massaged a kale salad bare, without any dressing (I had a good giggle at that one haha).Massaging dressing into kale helps to physically break down the tough fibres in the leafy green, making it much softer, tastier, and easier to digest.BONUS – unlike other greens, massaged kale salads don’t go limp or soggy, which makes them perfect to prep in big batches, bring to work, and eat throughout the week.Step 2: Tear the leaves into smaller pieces, then wash and dry them well in a salad spinner.You can do this with most dressing really, but one of my simple go-to’s is a mix of olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper.Step 4: Pour the dressing over the prepared kale leaves in a large bowl.Step 5: Using clean hands, squeeze and massage the dressing into the kale leaves.Step 6: Once done, cover the bowl of massaged kale and let sit in the fridge for at least 30-60 mins to break the fibres down even further.You can keep this simple massaged kale in an airtight container or bowl in the fridge for about 3-4 days.Now that you know the BEST way to enjoy a kale salad, you have no excuses to not reap the benefits of this nutrient-dense green!(2 grams per cup) antioxidants, which prevent cellular damage and provide a multitude of health benefits.You can also subscribe to my email list to never miss a new recipe or nutrition education post! .
Once and for All: WTF Does It Actually Mean to Massage Your Kale
It's supposed to break down the toughness of the leaves to make them softer and less bitter, giving you a bowl of greens that not only tastes better but is easier to digest."You just need 1 1/2 gallons of cold, filtered water, 1/4 cup of kosher salt, and three bunches of Tuscan kale with the bottom two inches of the stems removed.".Whether you decide to give your kale a massage or simply soak it in salty water, you'll be left with a restaurant-worthy salad with leaves so perfectly tender that you might even convince yourself to bring it to work to eat every day.Here's more need-to-know info on kale: how it compares to spinach health-wise and the common kitchen tool that helps you chop a salad super fast. .
How to Massage Kale
While tasty in recipes like Feta, Kale & Pear Salad and Superfood Chopped Salad with Salmon & Creamy Garlic Dressing, raw kale can have a bitter flavor and fibrous texture when not prepared properly.Massaging kale is also an easy way to infuse flavor into raw leaves without cooking and make a dish even better.First, mix the dressing you plan to use with your salad in a bowl large enough to hold the kale. .