Full Belly Kale Caesar

1 large kale
2 large garlic
minced and mashed into a paste
kosher salt
1 whole egg yolk
or 2 tablespoons egg substitute
2 whole anchovy fillets
minced or a heaping teaspoon of anchovy paste
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
to taste
freshly ground pepper
to taste.
1/3 cup grated Parmesan-Reggiano
homemade croutons
Right inside the entrance to Monterey Market in Berkeley is a big table of vegetables. The kale spoke to me - boy, was this good!
Cut the toughest part of the ribs out of the kale leaves.
Stack 6-8 of them at a time, roll them into sort of a fat cigar shape, then slice them into 1/2″ slices. Sharpening your chef’s knife before doing this is a huge help.
Wash and dry all the kale strips in a salad spinner.
Peel, mince, and then mash the garlic cloves into a paste. Add a little kosher salt to the leading edge of your pile of garlic. Lay the sharp edge of your chef’s knife across the leading edge. Push down hard with the 3 fingers of your non-knife hand and pull the knife back toward you mashing it down into the cutting board. Get a little more garlic under the blade and do it again. Repeat until the pile is mashed. When you get get good at this, you mash the garlic toward you then sweep it back into a pile with the dull edge of the knife. You only need about a teaspoon of mashed garlic.
Whisk the garlic, egg yolk or substitute, anchovy, lemon juice, and Dijon in a small bowl.
Drizzle in the olive oil while whisking.
Season the dressing with salt and pepper to taste and add more lemon juice if needed.
Toss the kale leaves with the dressing and the grated cheese. If this sits for a few minutes before serving, the acid of the lemon juice tenderizes the kale a bit. Caesar salads are not all about romaines of the day any more.