Kale Salad with Walnuts and Feta

by jenna on January 19, 2011

I feel healthier just by looking at kale.

Like, I’ll be grocery shopping and filling my cart with the usual (butter, sugar and chocolate chips) then just go stand in the produce department and gaze at the kale before quickly pushing my cart away to the check-out, grabbing an extra dark chocolate bar as I go.

This strategy works best after an evening filled with too much wine and too many cookies. And you don’t actually have to eat the kale (ick?), you just have to stare at it for awhile.

Works like a charm.

Let me preface this recipe by telling you upfront that before now, I really hated raw kale. Cooked? Fine. I can do that. Especially when doused with a sweet and spicy barbecue sauce and eaten with creamy cannellini beans. Yum.

But raw kale salads? No thanks. I’d rather chew on the sole of my shoe. The whole “massaged kale salad” craze a few years ago left me downright hungry and confused.

This is not that.

This, my friends, is a kale salad for people that hate kale.

But if you absolutely love kale and can’t live without it, this salad is for you, too.

Heck, if you’ve never even tried kale before and the sight of green vegetables scare you, this salad is for you, too.

It’s hearty and slightly salty…I think it’s downright addicting. But then again, I have a borderline unhealthy obsession with all things feta.

The best thing though, is that this salad comes together in only about five minutes and keeps for a few days in the fridge! In fact, it will be even better on the second day.

Kale Salad with Walnuts and Feta

serves 4

Print this recipe!

1 large bunch dinosaur kale, stems discarded and torn into bite sized pieces

1 shallot, minced

1/8th tsp sea salt (just a sprinkle)

2 T extra virgin olive oil

1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

1/4 cup roughly chopped walnuts

In a large bowl, combine the kale, salt, shallot and olive oil. Toss well. Add the feta and walnuts. Serve immediately or keep for up to five days in the fridge.

kale for dinner means chocolate chip cookie loaf for dessert.

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{ 91 comments… read them below or add one }

Alina @ Duty Free Foodie January 19, 2011 at 5:05 am

Oddly, I’ve never actually had kale. I find it really intimidating. I’ve been procrastinating on kale chips for about two years now. One day, kale, one day!

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jen @ taste life January 19, 2011 at 5:05 am

I don’t know why, but between this recipe and another one I recently saw for kale salad, I’m actually tempted to try it! However, this time of year I’m not sure I could get my hands on beautiful kale like you have in the picture – if it was summer and the tailgate market was running, I’d run there right now.

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:47 am

you should! It really is tasty and hearty!

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megan @ blackberries for jam January 19, 2011 at 5:08 am

I must confess I am obsessed with kale. I’d probably choose it over chocolate. Crazy, right?

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laurie :: the corner slice January 19, 2011 at 6:48 am

Yes, very crazy :)

But major props to you! I’m jealous!

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:47 am

crazy! ;)

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Estela @ Weekly Bite January 19, 2011 at 5:10 am

Looks delicious! I think Kale is one of prettiest vegetables out there :)

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Dani @ Body By Nature January 19, 2011 at 5:12 am

So glad you posted this! I so want to love kale, and I’m really trying hard to love it. But I’m a little confused by the different types available, any advice?

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:46 am

I really like the dinosaur variety because it’s less “tough” than the others and doesn’t taste as bitter. It’s more like thick lettuce!

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Lauren at KeepItSweet January 19, 2011 at 5:15 am

The only form of kale I like so far is kale chips… may have to try this!

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Jessica @ How Sweet January 19, 2011 at 5:16 am

Hmmm… not sure if my unsophisticated palate could handle this. Greens do make me convulse, you know. But I love kale chips. I think I need to suck it up and try it.

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Baking 'n' Books January 19, 2011 at 5:18 am

Hmm…I should really start using herbs and spices and not just dumping spaghetti sauce and cheese over all my salads and vegetables….;)

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Liz @ Tip Top Shape January 19, 2011 at 5:21 am

Feta makes everything better, so I think this recipe could be a real winner!!

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Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat January 19, 2011 at 5:24 am

Love kale, and love salads. This one sounds like a winner. Thanks Jenna! :)

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Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman January 19, 2011 at 5:24 am

I tried kale once and desperately wanted to like it. Not so much. But I do love feta. And walnuts. I think it’s time for another try…

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Blog is the New Black January 19, 2011 at 5:29 am

I feel healthier just looking at kale, too. I love adding it to salads, etc. for an extra boost!

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Stacy @ Every Little Thing January 19, 2011 at 5:30 am

Kale is a true superfood. It’s def too bitter to eat raw though, I agree! I’ve found that if I finely chop it and throw it in with other kinds of lettuce, I can eat it raw that way (because there’s dressing on it). It’s best sauteed with garlic and onion though :) I’m gonna make your salad!

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Sarah (Running to Slow Things Down) January 19, 2011 at 5:31 am

I adore kale! It’s smooth and lovely in soups. And it’s hearty and rustic when sauteed with onions, garlic, lemon juice and olive oil. Sometimes I’ll shred a carrot to “sweeten” things up.

I can’t wait to try this dish. It sounds fabulous. Especially since I also have an obsession with all things feta-related. :D

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Bethany @Bridezilla Bakes January 19, 2011 at 5:34 am

A salad that keeps in the fridge… and that is even better a day later?! Count me in!

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Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean January 19, 2011 at 5:35 am

i had no idea about this dinosaur kale! i was going to ask if there were different kinds because yours didn’t look anything like the kind i just bought! which do you like better?

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:42 am

I like this variety (dinosaur kale) better because it doesn’t seem as “tough” as the regular curly kind! Give it a chance!

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Kristen @ That Hoosier Girl January 19, 2011 at 5:43 am

I like your theory about the chocolate chip loaf and definitely agree! I love feta with “heartier” greens, but have never tried kale! I always told myself if I did venture out and try kale…it would have to be in the form of a chip, but this had me reconsidering :)

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Jess January 19, 2011 at 5:49 am

You beautiful being. I adore kale (even raw in smoothies), and I have EVERY INGREDIENT IN MY KITCHEN RIGHT NOW. Looks like dinner’s gonna be delicious…

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:42 am

I love it when that happens! Let me know how you like it!

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sarah k @ the pajama chef January 19, 2011 at 5:54 am

oh goodness, this looks really good. i love kale and so does my husband (surprisingly). i have never seen this variety of kale though… will have to search it out :)

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BeePie Runs January 19, 2011 at 5:55 am

This cracks me up! My mum is forever trying to get me to eat kale. She even wants me to plant some in my little garden patch… um, why??
I know it’s good for you but I’ll stick to spinach, thanks very much.

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BeePie Runs January 19, 2011 at 6:00 am

This cracks me up! My mum is forever trying to get me to eat kale. She even wants me to plant it in my little garden patch… um, why?
I know it’s super healthy but I’ll stick to spinach, thanks very much.

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:41 am

hahaha I love that she went so far as to having you plant a garden! That’s so awesome!

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Justeen @ Blissful Baking January 19, 2011 at 6:05 am

Ohh this salad looks great! I love kale – it makes a great wrap, like lettuce!

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cathyb.@brightbakes January 19, 2011 at 6:05 am

i felt healthier just seeing this title pop up in my google reader! ;)
I do love kale though…so it won’t make being healthy too hard today!
love,
cathy b.

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Jess @ Fit Chick in the City January 19, 2011 at 6:05 am

This salad sounds so good. I usually stay away from kale, but look forward to trying this soon!

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Camille January 19, 2011 at 6:06 am

Interesting! I’m definitely not a fan of raw kale either, but I think i want to give this a try :)

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Michele @ Healthy Cultivations January 19, 2011 at 6:15 am

Oh, I love kale too. I recently made a lime avocado kale salad, and it was fantastic. I’m all for finding new ways to prepare this awesome green. Feta and walnuts sound like the perfect way to try it next time.

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:41 am

lime avocado sounds very interesting and delicious!

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Gill (snaxandthecity) January 19, 2011 at 6:42 am

Yay I’m so glad someone’s come up with a NICE kale salad – I’ve tried so many ‘massaged’ raw kale ones and they all make me feel ill! I’ll be trying this soon :)

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Amanda (Eating Up) January 19, 2011 at 6:42 am

What about people who don’t hate, but just don’t prefer kale? ;-)

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:40 am

then you should try this, too. And then eat a cookie.

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Melomeals: Vegan for $3.33 a Day January 19, 2011 at 6:46 am

I love all things kale… this sounds delicious!

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erin January 19, 2011 at 6:53 am

This summer, I grew the most beautiful kale in my garden. Unfortunately, I had no idea what to do with it. and it scared me a little. so I ended up throwing most of it in the compost bin. FOR SHAME.
I’m definitely bookmarking this recipe to save for next summer :)

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Daisy January 19, 2011 at 6:54 am

I am unsure if I like Kale, therefore must make this salad. Thanks Jenna!

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:40 am

let me know if you like it!

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Ellie @ The Mommyist January 19, 2011 at 7:05 am

I love kale but only cooked kale; it’s way too tough raw. This salad looks great! Salty kale chips are my favorite though.

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Krystina (Basil & Wine) January 19, 2011 at 7:09 am

I love massaged kale AND cooked kale. This looks delicious.

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Angharad January 19, 2011 at 7:10 am

I had a kale salad for dinner last night. Except mine was tossed with bacon and bacon fat. It kind of made my day.

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:39 am

wow. your kale totally beats my kale!

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Stephanie @ Thorns Have Roses January 19, 2011 at 7:14 am

Haha. Well I love me some massaged kale but this looks amazing too!

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Maggie (LiveLearnProject) January 19, 2011 at 7:17 am

I love kale! It is definitely one of my favorite vegetables and this preparation looks delicious.

Still, I have a hunch that I might enjoy the dessert, too. ;)

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 7:39 am

eating the kale is just an excuse to eat the dessert! ;)

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Stephanie @ Living and Loving January 19, 2011 at 7:25 am

I’ve been searching for some good Kale recipes… I’m going to have to add this one to the grocery list!

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shelly January 19, 2011 at 7:32 am

I have a very similar gateway to Kale recipe! Instead of feta , you make a dressing by blending together blue cheese and buttermilk, and letting the kale marinate in that for at least two hours. You sprinkle on the walnuts just before serving. So good and it wins over all my non veggie loving friends.
I do agree that in general, I prefer my kale cooked , but this salad is divine!

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AllieNic @ Frisky Lemon January 19, 2011 at 7:42 am

I actually like raw kale…maybe even more than cooked kale! I usually mess it up when I cook it…like it’s burny or soggy…and yuck. I usually do a raw, massaged kale salad with garlic, olive oil and sea salt…I even like to put bacon in there from time to time…

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linda January 19, 2011 at 8:09 am

Jenna,

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Linda January 19, 2011 at 8:11 am

Jenna,
Sorry for the above mistake. Anyway, you must have read my mind. I had a kale salad at a restaurant last weekend that I want to replicate at home. This recipe helps alot. My salad had parmesan cheese, toasted pinenuts, and golden raisins. I loved the sweet and salty combo.

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Michelle @ Turning Over a New Leaf January 19, 2011 at 8:12 am

Hah! I actually had massaged kale for the first time yesterday for lunch. :-P

And today I’m having raw kale in my roast beef sandwich.

I’m one of those weirdos that likes raw kale!

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Moni'sMeals January 19, 2011 at 8:15 am

perfect meal to me! I love kale so much. This salad sounds great.
That bread looks so damn good too.

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Maria January 19, 2011 at 8:27 am

I always save room for dessert:) Will be making this salad soon so I can have 2 helpings of dessert:)

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Darcy @ She Sings at the Table January 19, 2011 at 8:38 am

It’s true–putting kale in your grocery cart (or just gazing at it, as you mentioned) makes you feel healthy. I bought some last night, and the cashier said: “This is healthiest looking basket of groceries I’ve ever seen. It looks like a grocery basket somebody would get in the movies before going on a fancy little picnic.” :)

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Sarah January 19, 2011 at 8:47 am

This looks perfect for a girl who finds very little use for kale. The feta and walnuts sold me:-).

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Beth @ DiningAndDishing January 19, 2011 at 8:57 am

I’m thinking some dried cranberries would also be awesome in this. Greens with feta/walnuts/cranberries is my very favorite salad combo :).

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Natalia - a side of simple January 19, 2011 at 9:01 am

I’ve never, ever had kale before (I know. How can I even call myself a blogger? haha) But with some feta mixed in, I don’t see how it can go wrong…

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Amber's Notebook January 19, 2011 at 9:07 am

YUM! Sounds fabulous!
Amber’s Notebook

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Amber K January 19, 2011 at 9:11 am

Kale is absolutely disgusting. Although to be fair, I have never tried it cooked. But I do like spinach raw and hate it cooked. So we’ll see!

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megan January 19, 2011 at 9:18 am

If you toss/coat your chocolate chips in flour before you add them to the batter, they won’t sink to the bottom of the loaf as much.

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natalie (the sweets life) January 19, 2011 at 9:42 am

love kale chips. love kale in soups (i’ve made both sweet potato soup with kale and bnut squash and kale minetrone–pure awesomeness!). raw kale? meh. but i’ll give this a go! :)

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chelsey @ clean eating chelsey January 19, 2011 at 9:51 am

I’ve never tried kale – I’ve been a little afraid too, but I think you have me convinced.

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Christina V. January 19, 2011 at 10:01 am

OMG, Jenna…this looks amaaaazing!!! I’m currently home on my lunch break shoveling roasted veggies in my mouth but I’m already planning on making your kale salad for dinner. Does it taste similar to cooked collards?!? If only I had a little elf that would have the chocolate chip loaf ready for me by the time my shift is over :)

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Dee January 19, 2011 at 10:19 am

I could so get down with this. YUM.

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Tina January 19, 2011 at 10:39 am

I’ve never had Kale, but this looks pretty delicious, and anything with feta has to be good right? Looks like I’ll be adding Kale to my ever growing grocery list!

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ShortSkirts January 19, 2011 at 11:02 am

That looks great. I love Kale so i’ll have to make this salad too.

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ShortSkirts January 19, 2011 at 11:02 am

That looks great. I love Kale so i’ll have to make this salad too.

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Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) January 19, 2011 at 11:31 am

“The whole “massaged kale salad” craze a few years ago left me downright hungry and confused.”-

OMG you crack me up! I do love my raw vegan foods but they are not for everyone and i totally can understand that logic. And I love that you call it like you see it! Thank you for keeping it real, Jenna :)

And for this recipe. It looks great (even tho I do like massaged kale too…lol)

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Kati @ Living Well January 19, 2011 at 11:49 am

Your writing is such a pleasure to read! So witty. I tried Kale and hated it :/ But maybe I’ll give it another chance with feta :)

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Kelly January 19, 2011 at 11:56 am

I have to try this! I made your BBQ beans and kale and loved it!

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Lida (Octopus Gourmet) January 19, 2011 at 12:03 pm

Nothing is better than kale.
Stir-fried with garlic, and maybe some shiitake mushrooms?
Even better: with a juicy piece of seared salmon on the side.

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Jess January 19, 2011 at 12:40 pm

you’ve convinced me. i will try kale this week!

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Anne@MyZenPulse January 19, 2011 at 1:36 pm

threw this together with some chopped apples and a little balsamic vinegar to soften up the kale. SO. GOOD!

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Cat January 19, 2011 at 2:04 pm

I sort of feel like you were reading my mind with this post. Though I like the massaged kale salads, I only like the ones that the Whole Foods bar makes. Not a cheap habit. Will have to give this one a whirl!

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Maggie @ SmileWriteNow January 19, 2011 at 2:37 pm

This recipe looks great! I love kale.

Also, I have a hunch I might enjoy the chocolate chip cookie loaf…seeing as my favorite dessert is chocolate chip pound cake.

Do you think they might be similar? ;)

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dana @ my little celebration January 19, 2011 at 3:25 pm

I ate this today for lunch and it was AWESOME!

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jenna January 19, 2011 at 5:24 pm

wahoo!!! I ate it for lunch AND dinner tonight. Bam!

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Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin January 19, 2011 at 3:53 pm

I actually really like the taste of raw kale! Whenever I cook with it, I always find myself snacking on a few of the raw leaves first.

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Jennie (in Wonderland) January 19, 2011 at 4:55 pm

I LOVE kale.

My favourite way to eat it is massaged with olive oil, lemon juice, crushed garlic and red chili flakes. And then I dump daiya cheese all over it (it tastes kinda like cheez whiz, so in a word, AWESOME) and I toast a pita and make ‘pita crumbs’ by processing it. Cheesy, crunchy, lemony, spicy, garlicky. OMG.

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Michelle @ Living Learning Earning January 19, 2011 at 7:01 pm

I’m really excited about this! I just bought some kale and hhhhated it raw, so I’m looking forward to trying this with the rest of it. Thanks for the recipe!

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Jenn January 19, 2011 at 10:38 pm

Love kale & feta so this salad sounds delish! Question: do you mean lacinato kale?? I have never heard of lactino kale and wondering if this was a typo (happens to the best of us :)) or if this is a new type of kale I have never tried…thanks!!

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jenna January 20, 2011 at 10:46 am

oops! Yes!

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The Healthy Apple January 20, 2011 at 7:31 pm

Love kale, it’s my favorite veggie…I see you use dinosaur kale in this recipe, isn’t it delicious? Looks great Jenna.

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Ffion @ Chocolate and Raspberries January 21, 2011 at 5:01 am

I’m always a bit scared of kale, I’v attempted to make Kale chips once, and I threw some into a Dhal I made last week, I think I just need to use it more!

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rebecca February 13, 2011 at 10:50 am

i sent my husband to the grocery store and on the list was the ingredients to make this salad…he mistakenly got collards instead of kale, so i sauteed them down a bit with the shallot in evoo then added the walnuts and feta after it cooled. oh my goodness it was SO good, almost had a bit of sweetness to it. i would definitely recommend making this “mistake” too!

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Tracie May 21, 2011 at 11:14 am

I followed this link from this week’s post of “healthy things”, made it today and I’m in LOVE! I’ve read a lot about kale salad lately, and love kale but had never tried it raw. That changed today thanks to you! This salad was amazing! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

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Erika January 21, 2012 at 5:48 pm

My store only had one kind of kale and I don’t know which kind it was… but this was my first time trying kale, shallots and feta!! The shallots were a bit strong for me, I think next time I’ll just use a small red onion… and then it was just a tiny bit bland, so I added some red wine vinegar and it was AWESOME!!

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Alex April 23, 2012 at 1:12 pm

I just tried this on the weekend, and even though i thought “whaaat only olive oil to dress it up?!” The feta makes up for that for sure. yummm it was really good! I may have drizzled a bit of honey into the mix too … :)

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