Daily Veg: Kale Salad at Chuko

Editor's note: January is Vegetable Month on Serious Eats: New York! Every day this month we'll introduce you to a different vegetable dish we love. Do you have a veg dish to nominate? Let us know!

20120108-chuko-kale.jpg

[Photo: Carey Jones]

I'm a lover of kale whatever the preparation, but the kale salad ($7) at Chuko in Prospect Heights is truly remarkable. Small pieces of kale take on two forms, some left raw and softly crunchy, some tempura-fried (and, well, crisply crunchy), the batter clinging to their every crag and cranny. They're dressed in a faintly sweet white miso vinaigrette that gently soaks in; pickled golden raisins join the greens, and strands of crisped-up Japanese sweet potato curl on top.

What's amazing about this salad is that you don't know which is better: the crisp fried bits, making you wonder why you don't eat more tempura greens; or the raw bits, where the kale's vivid flavor comes through more powerfully. The answer, of course, is both.

Chuko

552 Vanderbilt Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11238 (at Dean Street, map) 718 576-6701