Lemon juice is an acid, which helps break down the cell structure of the kale, softening it the same way sautéing it would. But acid and heat denature myrosinase, so we produce no sulforaphane and don’t get as many food:gene benefits. Because we need acid or heat to make the kale less tough and more palatable, this recipe uses lemon juice to soften the leaves and then we add in a crucifer - daikon radish - right at the end to ensure you get your kale and your sulforaphane too.
· 1 bunch kale (Lacinato is easiest to use but any variety is good)
· Juice and zest of 1 lemon (2 if the bunch of kale is big or lemon isn’t juicy)
· 1/4 cup olive oil
· 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
· 1/4 cup grated or peeled* carrot or sweet potato
· 1/4 cup (or more) grated or peeled* daikon radish
· 1 avocado cubed
· 1/4 cup tart cherries
· 1/4 cup roasted sunflower seeds
· Honey to sweeten (optional)
- Strip the kale leaves from the stem. Discard the stems. Tear or cut the kale leaves into bite-sized pieces.
- Pour the lemon over the kale and gently massage until the kale begins to wilt. Set aside for an hour for the lemon to do its work.
- Pour the olive oil over the kale and season with the salt. Add the carrots or sweet potato and toss gently.
- Add in lemon zest, daikon radish, raisins, avocado, and sunflower seeds and toss gently again.
- Taste and add a drizzle of honey as needed.