Massaged Kale and Tuna Salad
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Sometimes I just need a good salad. Salads are versatile and delicious, but sometimes aren’t hearty enough to be considered a main course. So I like to add a bit of protein so there’s a bit more to it.
For this salad, I chose tuna. Because it’s what I had. Because I like it. I used canned for this one. But, then a few weeks later I discovered fresh tuna at the grocery store, and the leftovers from that dinner would work just as well (maybe better, hello, fresh!).
You could also use chicken, turkey, ham, quinoa, garbonzo beans, or lentils.
‘Cause why not?!
Then there’s the kale. It’s one of my favorite green veggies. But, I also love chard and spinach too. If you don’t have any of these dark green goodies, regular lettuce will work fine too (just don’t do the massaging step). A hearty butter lettuce works great, but use what you have in your fridge.
Kale is tossed with a bit of olive oil and some salt, then massaged for a few minutes. Your hands will turn green. That’s normal.
It will get darker and feel a bit limp, like it does when it’s cooked. I love kale this way. Easier to digest and super yummy.
You can really use whatever dressing you’d like. Although I’d suggest some sort of vinaigrette or something lemony. I just squeezed some lemon and drizzled a bit of balsamic over top. Perfect with the olive oil that was already all over the kale.
I like a lotta crunch in my salads. Usually nuts and carrots do the trick. Sometimes croutons are added. Here I’ve also got apples, because I happened to have some on hand. But, again, use what you have (and what goes well with tuna, or whatever protein you’ve chosen).
At other times, I’ve also used grapes (in season now, so yummy with tuna!), cucumber, apples, cheddar, and almonds. This is one of my favorite combinations. It would go well with a nice butter lettuce, or the massaged kale.
Tomato is also a good addition.
Use what’s in season and what will compliment the other ingredients, and you’re sure to find a winning combination.
However you toss it together, this hearty salad will hold up well prepared the night before for a work or school lunch. But, like most foods, it’s best eaten fresh, right after you’ve made it, standing at the kitchen island, out of the serving bowl… or maybe that’s just me.
- Tuna: 1 can tuna, drained (or about 5-6 oz. leftover cooked tuna)
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- 1 t olive oil
- pinch cayenne
- to taste salt
- to taste pepper
- 2 T green onions, chopped
- Salad: 3 C kale, torn into small pieces
- 1-2 T olive oil
- 1-2 T lemon juice
- 1/2 to 1 T balsamic vinegar
- to taste salt
- to taste pepper
- 1/4 C carrot, thinly sliced into rounds (or instead of carrots and green onions, try: grapes, cheddar cheese, cucumber, and apple)
- 1 apple, roughly chopped
- 1/4 C roasted and salted almonds, roughly chopped
- (could also add chopped tomato)
- Combine all tuna ingredients together. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
- Pour 1 T oil and a bit of salt onto kale. Massage with hands for 2-3 minutes (or until kale looks darker, wiltier, and a bit like it is cooked).
- Top kale with tuna and remaining ingredients.
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