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Gennaro's Black Kale Salad with Currants
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I would love to say that this is my creation, but I happily throw the spotlight on my friend Gennaro Picione, the man behind the highly regarded Gennaro Restaurant on Manhattan's Upper West Side. On my first visit there, he brought out this salad, and I've been addicted ever since. It's all about the vincotto, a cooked Puglian wine made from dark, sweet, dense grapes. Substituting an aged balsamic vinegar just isn't the same. You won't find vincotto at the supermarket, but I urge you to track it down--at the local Italian grocer, specialty food shop, or online.
NOTE: Ingredients for a changed serving size are based on a calculation and are not reviewed by the author or tested. Please also consider scaling up or down cooking containers as needed.
Put the kale in a large bowl and set aside. Place the currants in another bowl and add hot water to cover. Let stand for 5 minutes to plump. Drain and pat dry.
Heat the olive oil in a small pot over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute; do not burn. Add the red-pepper flakes and cook for 30 seconds more. Add the kale and saute for just a minute until it softens slightly. Remove from the heat. Add the pine nuts and currants, season with salt and pepper, and toss. Transfer immediately to salad plates, drizzle with the vincotto, and top with the ricotta salata.
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