Wash the kale well and dry it either in a salad spinner or pat it dry with a kitchen towel.
There are two main ways to cut kale and remove the thick stem (debone the kale).By hand: use two fingers to squeeze where the thickest part of the stem is, then slowly move your hands down the stem, and the kale leaves should fall off. By Knife: run the knife as close to the side of the stem to remove the leaves.If you prefer, you can chop the leaves into even smaller pieces or tear them by hand, though this isn't necessary.
Step 2: Prepare the lemon dressing
Mince the garlic into a small bowl and add the juice of half a lemon. Then add the salt, pepper, and olive oil and mix well.
Step 3: Massage the kale
Add the lemon garlic kale salad dressing to the bowl with the kale leaves and then use clean hands to grab handfuls of the kale leaves and squeeze, massaging (squeezing and pinching) them until the kale is soft and tender. This usually takes 2-3 minutes.
Step 4: Serve the massaged kale salad
Once massaged, allow the kale to sit for just a few minutes while preparing any toppings and add-ins. This will allow it to macerate and further tenderize the kale.For the lemony kale pomegranate salad, I added some fresh pomegranate seeds, flaked almonds, and then topped with some Air Fryer baked cauliflower.
How To Store
Once prepared, any leftover kale salad with lemon dressing can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days - however, the leaves will become softer/more wilted as it sits, so it sometimes only lasts 1-2 days.If you want to make the kale salad 3-5 days in advance, then prepare the leaves in advance but only add the dressing the day before or on the day (the acid will break down the leaves without the need to massage the kale).
The kale stems can be added to smoothies or fresh green juices, to make vegetable stock, pesto, stir-fried, or even roasted.
Read the blog post above for the answers to more FAQs as well as tons of ways to adapt this recipe with different dressings and add-ins!