Once upon a time, we were part of a CSA. Week after week, we would get a glut of strange greens (like kale or chard) and week after week, it would end up feeding the earthworms in our compost. The worms were thrilled; I was not.
I looked for recipes in my usual places, but I wasn't a very accomplished cook at that point, and my shelf of cookbooks was anemic, at best. The internet yielded a number of unsuccessful attempts, and really, how nutritious are kale chips, really? (Compared to ice cream, probably very nutritious. But still.)
What we ended up with was - what I estimate - was about $200 in wasted kale.
... and then came Pinterest.
Recipes! Parenting ideas! Arts and crafts! Is there anything this miraculous site *doesn't* have? (Answer: no.)
While on one of my initial pinning binges, I tripped across this recipe for Kale salad. Ever the optimist, I added the ingredients to my shopping list, and enthusiastically told SuperAndrew about this miraculous kale salad that I just *knew* we were going to love, and we would finally *get* why everyone but us thought kale was so great.
SuperAndrew didn't share my enthusiasm.
"So this is Sunk Cost Kale salad?" he asked me, SMIRKILY. (I know "smirkily" isn't a word. IT SHOULD BE.)
"Yes. And it is going to make all that wasted kale WORTH IT."
It was. We've had it (about) once a week for the last couple of years, and I have a few regulars over for dinner who specifically request it. And my variations on the recipe. Which I will now share with you.
"Sunk Cost" Kale Salad, from originally from Melomeals, with my adaptations.
Mix in a REALLY big bowl (I use a 9 qt. stainless steel mixing bowl):
• 4 cups kale (baby kale is my preference, but you use the stems, the leaves, all of it)
• 1/2 a green cabbage
• 2 cups shredded carrots
• 1/2 a red onion, diced
• 1 teaspoon kosher salt
• a generous splash of lemon juice
• a generous splash of olive oil
Massage together for 5 minutes or until the veggies start to break down. (Set a timer, five minutes feels much longer than it should. If you don't do the full five minutes and/or skimp on the lemon juice and olive oil, the kale will not chemically cook, and it will taste weird.)
Post massage, I add *another* good splash of olive oil and lemon juice at this stage. Then, add:
• 1/4 cup roasted sesame seeds
• 3/4 cup sunflower seeds
• 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
• 3/4 cup Pumpkin Seeds
Salt to taste.
• Make sure your hands are VERY clean before making this salad. I also wear vinyl gloves for the “massage” portion of the salad.
• This will keep (as long as you NEVER double dip or use the same tasting spoon) for up to 4 days in the fridge. KidBrother Sam thinks it improves by sitting overnight in the fridge, SuperAndrew prefers it fresh.