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Kale "Caesar"

Time 25 minutes
Yields Serves 4 to 6
Kale “Caesar”
(Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)
1

Toast the bread crumbs: Combine them in a small saucepan with the garlic, lemon zest and 3 tablespoons olive oil. Stir to coat well. There should be only a light trace of oil in the bottom of the pan. Season with a pinch of salt and place over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the crumbs have darkened and toasted, about 5 minutes. Transfer them to a small bowl and set them aside to cool slightly.

2

Remove and discard the stems from the kale. Chop the leaves into bite-sized pieces. Place in a large mixing bowl with 1 teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Grab the leaves by the handful and massage them roughly. Don’t be timid. After a minute or two, the coarse, stiff leaves will turn soft and silky. You’ll have about half the volume of kale you started with.

3

Add the toasted bread crumbs and lemon juice and toss well. Season to taste with more salt and lemon juice if necessary. Arrange on separate salad plates or on a platter and sprinkle grated or shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano over top.


Russ Parsons is a former food writer and columnist at the Los Angeles Times.
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