In the winter it is relatively easy to grow, but the complaint I’ve heard most often is “what do I do with it?” This past week at Canalino we made massaged kale salad. A rambunctious group of 3rd graders arrived in the garden so I directed traffic. First we all stood in a circle and put our hands on the person in front of us. Then we gave them a gentle massage on the shoulders, this got everyone focused on the “massaged” portion of the activity. The kids harvested Purple Russian, Dinosaur Kale, and the last of the apples for the season. They washed the kale and stripped it into one bowl, where the next kids cut it into strips with scissors. We used an apple cutter for the apples and then snipped them into smaller pieces. The highlight was the “massaging.” To get the kale to wilt a little you rub salt into it. Hand washing and the going over the spread of germs from mouth to hand is something I should have spent a little more time on…The enthusiastic kale massagers combined all the ingredients and two were chosen to divy it into sample cups. The two helpers served the samples to other students during lunch in the cafeteria. There were many wrinkled noses at the sight of greens in the sample cup, but most kids tried the salad after they learned that it was from the garden. There were many positive responses to kale, and a few dramatic “spit outs.” The most encouraging part was watching the two server students enthusiastically hand samples of their salad to other students.
Massaged Kale Salad
1 Bunch Kale (preferably Purple Russian Kale or Green Curly Kale)
½ teaspoon salt
1 Apple, cut in half then thinly sliced into half circles
1 ½ Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tsp Olive oil aka a sprinkling
Handfull of currants or 4 dry figs cut into pieces or 3 pitted dates cut into pieces *with the kids we used a handful of raisins
White Cheddar goat cheese cut into bits or gorgonzola crumbled *I omitted the cheese with the kids, but it could be a fun addition!
Strip kale from the stems and chop into thin strips. Massage the salt into the kale 1-2 minutes. The salt with begin to break down the kale and cause it to wilt. While the kale is wilting, cut up apple, then toss apple, dried fruit and cheese in a bowl, dress with vinegar and olive oil, toss and enjoy!
The photos are from an activity @ Carpinteria Family School today where we made worm casting tea!