I’ve been kind of obsessed with Dr. Andrew Weil for a while. Eating Well for Optimum Health was a big read for me in high school, and thanks to it, I spent a whole summer eating hippie cereal with seaweed-fortified soymilk for breakfast. EdenSoy is so good…and so expensive.
Seriously, though. Dr. Weil is great because he’s really intelligent, and manages to communicate his thoughts about health in this sort of jolly, soothing way that makes me think, Yes! I can take care of myself and not be miserable while I do it. And the fact that he looks really happy—no, joyful—in all of his photos is just so NICE.
He has a new-ish cookbook out that I (regretfully) don’t yet own, but when I saw the recipe for his kale salad with Parmesan and breadcrumbs, I had to try it. (Also: I don’t care how many people say kale is played out, it’s a vegetable, not a band, and I'm going to keep eating it.)
Dr. Weil’s Kale-Parmesan Salad
Adapted from True Food: Seasonal, Sustainable, Simple, Pure
2 large bunches curly kale, tough stems removed and leaves thinly sliced
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup freshly-squeezed lemon juice
3 garlic cloves, grated
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus some shaved cheese for garnish
2 tablespoons breadcrumbs
Rinse all your kale well and dry thoroughly. If you skip this step, you could end up eating dirt, which is always disappointing.
In a measuring cup, whisk together the oil, lemon juice, garlic, and salt. Pour it over the kale. Use your fingers to toss the kale so the dressing gets on every leaf, then massage the dressing into the leaves for a minute or two. Let the kale sit for a half hour to soften up.
Add the cheese and the breadcrumbs to the kale and toss to combine. Divide into serving bowls and top with a little more cheese (grated is fine, but I think shavings look pretty). Eat and feel the glow that comes from eating an enormous bowl of vegetables.
Serves 4 as a main course or 8 as a side dish