Massaged Kale with Tomatoes, Creamed Mozzarella, and Wild Rice

Photo by Joseph De Leo, Food Styling by Anna Stockwell

This recipe calls for wild rice but substitute any cooked grain—especially any random grains that are in the back of your fridge. If you do use wild rice, you don’t need to soak the grains overnight, but soaked rice will cook much more quickly and will “pop” when cooked, improving the texture. Unsoaked rice will take significantly longer than white rice to cook, so plan accordingly.


    • 1 small onion, cut into thin slices
    • 2 garlic cloves, minced
    • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    • 1/4 cup white wine
    • 1 cup wild rice, soaked overnight in 4 cups water
    • 1 bunch (4 cups) kale, midribs stripped, well dried and cut into 1/4-inchribbons
    • 1 ball (8 oz) fresh mozzarella
    • 1/4 cup sour cream
    • 1 lemon, zest and juice
    • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved


    1. Heat a glug of olive oil. Sweat the onion and garlic with the salt until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the white wine and reduce by half. Add the wild rice and the soaking liquid and cook until tender, about 45 minutes.
    2. In a mixing bowl, sprinkle the kale with a pinch of salt. Massage the kale until it is dark green, limp, and tender in mouthfeel.
    3. Tear the mozzarella into rough chunks. Combine with the sour cream, lemon zest and juice, a good pinch of salt, and a couple of grinds of black pepper.
    4. When the wild rice is cooked, drain any residual liquid and let cool.
    5. Toss the tomatoes, kale, and wild rice together with a couple glugs of olive oil and a pinch of salt. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Dot with the creamed mozzarella and serve.

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