Kale salad with cranberries and walnuts

Time 30 minutes
Yields Serves 4 to 6
Kale salad with cranberries and walnuts
(Lawrence K. Ho/Los Angeles Times)

Pour about one-half cup boiling water over the cranberries and leave them to soften until you are ready to toss the salad, at least 15 minutes.


Meanwhile, wash and dry the kale, slice away the stems and discard them. Stack the greens and roll them into tight bundles, then slice very thinly with a sharp knife; you’re aiming for a shredded look. You should have about 6 cups of shredded kale, which will shrink quite a bit the moment it is tossed with the oil and vinegar. Place the kale in a large bowl.


Wash and dry the arugula, cut off any tough-looking stems and cut it in short pieces. Toss the arugula with the kale.


Slice the olives off their stones and cut them in slivers. If using pine nuts, toast them lightly in a dry pan over low heat, stirring until they begin to turn golden and release their toasted fragrance. Core and seed the red pepper, quarter it lengthwise, and cut it in matchsticks. Toss the olives, nuts and pepper with the kale.


Drain the cranberries, then toss with the kale. Toss in the olive and walnut oils, the vinegar and sea salt. Taste the salad and correct the seasoning with a touch more salt or a drop of vinegar if it’s needed; how much salt you need will depend on how salty the olives are. Just before serving, add the crumbled cheese if you like. This makes about 12 cups salad.


This salad keeps well for a day or so, though it will become softer as it sits. Because it is sturdy, it can travel to a picnic or a potluck.

Adapted from “Love Soup” by Anna Thomas. Dinosaur kale is also known as black, Tuscan or lacinato kale.

Mary MacVean is the former Mind & Body editor at the Los Angeles Times. She’s a runner and a cook, and has worked at The Times as morning assignment editor, web liaison, food writer and copy editor. She was a national editor and writer focusing on food at the Associated Press and a features editor and a columnist in Moscow, where she also ran a children’s cooking school. She left The Times in 2015. 
Get our new Cooking newsletter, coming soon.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.