5.12.2013

Happy Mother's Day Brunch - Kale Bud Salad with Smoked Salmon and Poached Egg



I made this salad last week after staring at my over-grown red Russian kale looking more like trees in my garden box for a while, wondering "Can I eat them?"  I planted them last spring and over the past few weeks they've grown taller and taller due to the warm weather. 

I looked at the buds and yellow flowers. I've never grown kale before, so I wasn't sure what to do with them.  I didn't even know Russian kale grows so tall and has buds and flowers. They reminded me of nanohana in Japan or so-called baby broccoli in the States.  I found out after a quick look online that they are all in the same Brassica family.  I immediately thought about boiling them to make salad.  Since they are from my garden, I wanted to make something simple to preserve the taste and texture of the buds.  So I cooked them only for a minute or two and blanched them.

I have a feeling that some people wouldn't think to eat kale stems and buds, especially
 once they flower.  But they are really tasty and my kids have been snacking on them every day - happily. 





My husband was smoking some salmon with the new smoker he got for his birthday.  Since then, he's been smoking fish and meat every weekend.  Smoking fish or meat at home is relatively easy and fun.  






We have three chickens at home now and they've been laying eggs for the past couple of months. Yay, finally!  It feels very satisfying being able to eat my own eggs.  Cleaning their coop is a little less traumatizing now that they give us eggs.  I poached one of the eggs to top the kale bud salad with smoked salmon. 

I think this is a fabulous brunch dish to treat moms on Mother's Day : ) This one is for you, fellow moms~! Wishing you a great Mother's Day! 







Recipe: 4 servings

a couple bunches of Russian kale buds or baby broccolis
1 lemon (zested and juiced)
1 table spoon of extra virgin olive oil
1 tea spoon of salt and pepper
4 small pieces of smoked salmon
4 eggs
1 tea spoon of vinegar

Rinse and clean kale buds well.  Cut and separate kale buds and stems.  Bring water to boil in a large pan with some salt.  Prepare ice water in a large bowl.  Reduce heat to medium and add stems first.  Cook them for a minute and add the buds.  Cook for another minute.

Drain the water and transfer the kale into an ice water bowl.  Gently squeeze out the water from the kale buds.

Dress the kale buds with olive oil, salt, pepper and lemon juice.

To poach eggs, bring the water to boil in a medium/large pan with vinegar with high heat.  Turn the heat down to medium.  Crack open an egg and drop it in boing water gently.  Cook for about 3-5 minutes until the egg white is completely cooked and yolk is still runny.

Plate the kale salad topped with smoked salmon and poached egg.  Sprinkle a pinch of salt, pepper and lemon zest.

Happy Mother's Day!!!!!



If you are smoking your own salmon, here's the recipe.

Smoked Salmon

For brining salmon:
6 cups of water
1/3 cup of rock sea salt
1/3 cup of brown sugar
10 pepper corns
a hand full of fresh oregano
4 small filets of salmon (half of salmon)

Fill large bowl with water and add salt, sugar, pepper and oregano.  Brine the salmon filets for at least an hour in the refrigerator.  Drain the water after brining.


For rub mix:
3 table spoon of brown sugar
1 table spoon of salt
1 tea spoon of garlic power
1 tea spoon of smoked paprika
1/2 tea spoon of cayenne pepper
1/2 tea spoon of ground black pepper
1 lemon (use zests only)

Zest a lemon. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl.  Rub the mixture on the top of the brined salmon filets.



Get your smoker going and smoke the salmon for about two hours. ( The amount of smoking time varies depending on the smoker you are using and thickness of filets.)



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