Once you’ve rinsed and dried your kale, run your hand along the stem to remove the green leaves from the stalky stem. You don’t have to remove the stem completely (we actually enjoy the top 2/3 in the salad), but be sure to compost or reserve the larger bottom stalks for DIY vegetable broth.
Stack your stalks of kale on top of each other and finely chop. No need to mince, just cut into manageable, bite-size pieces.
Add kale to a large mixing / serving bowl and top with lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil. Then massage with clean hands for about 3 minutes. The point of massaging is to infuse the kale with the lemon juice and oil, and also to break down some of the tough, fibrous characteristics of kale. This makes it easier to chew and digest, and makes for a more tender salad. Season with salt, massage/toss once more, then set aside.
Next prepare the dressing by adding tahini, lemon juice, maple syrup, and salt (optional) to a medium mixing bowl. Whisk to combine. Then slowly add water until creamy and pourable. The mixture may seize up and thicken at first, but continue adding water a little at a time, whisking until creamy and smooth. Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more lemon juice for acidity, maple syrup for sweetness, or salt to taste. Set aside. (Store leftover dressing in the refrigerator up to 5-7 days — sometimes longer.)
To serve, top with desired amount of dressing and crispy chickpeas (optional), toss, and serve. Leftovers keep covered in the refrigerator up to 3-4 days (not freezer friendly). We enjoy leftovers chilled, but also find that they sauté nicely (even with the dressing and chickpeas) if you’re looking for a cooked version.
2 large bundles curly kale*, large stems removed and roughly chopped
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil (if avoiding oil, omit)
1 healthy pinch sea salt
1/3 cup tahini
3 Tbsp lemon juice
1-2 Tbsp maple syrup (or sub agave, or honey if not vegan)
1 pinch sea salt (optional)
Water to thin (~3-6 Tbsp or 45-90 ml as original recipe is written)
Crispy Baked Chickpeas (or store-bought)