Grilling kale gives it a bit of a smokey flavor which pairs really well with the salty bacon. The lemon adds brightness making this a great side dish.
- 1 pound kale, leaves only
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large garlic clove, thinly sliced
- Large pinch of red chili pepper
- Freshly ground pepper
- 2 thick slices of bacon, cut into 1/3-inch pieces
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
In a large pot of boiling salted water, blanch the kale until it is just tender, about 3 minutes. Drain and lightly squeeze out the excess water. Blot the kale dry and transfer to a large bowl. Add the olive oil, garlic and chili peppers, season with salt and pepper and toss well to coat.
In a skillet, cook the bacon over moderate heat, stirring, until crisp, 5 minutes. Drain on paper towels.
Light a grill or preheat grill pan over high heat. If using a grill (NOT your stove) place a 10-inch spring form ring (not the bottom) on the grill to contain the kale. Carefully pat the kale inside the ring, pressing down to form an even layer. Grill until lightly charred on the bottom, 3 minutes. With tongs, turn the kale over and grill on the other side for 3 minutes.
If using a grill pan on the stove, add the kale and toss occasionally.
Transfer the kale to a bowl and immediately toss with the bacon, olive oil, lemon zest and lemon juice; season with salt. Serve right away.