Written by on August 26, 2016

Kit’s Plate of the Month: Preserve’s Crispy Kale Salad

Preserve in Annapolis

Preserve

The Bar with a view to Main Street

When Preserve’s crispy kale salad arrives at the table, it looks beautiful and smells fantastic, a savory but bright mishmash of colors and scents, from cumin to sharp red onion. The aroma is just a teaser, though. The salad’s flavor is even better than its scent.

Ruffled tufts of fried kale provide the base for the salad and give each bite satisfying crunch. The leafy green is tossed with minced red onion and red pepper jelly, then topped with dollops of cumin-spiked yogurt. The cumin and onion drive the scent; but on the tongue, it’s the pepper jelly that shines. The jelly’s sweetness adds a surprising counterpoint to the savory tang of the cumin yogurt and sharp onion.

 

The jelly is made in-house at Preserve, one of downtown Annapolis Main Street’s newest restaurants. The restaurant’s name is a nod to its focus on all things pickled and jarred. Jars of goodies, from pepper jelly to pickles, line shelves on one long wall of the narrow space.

Preserve Chef Jeremy Hoffman

Chef Jeremy Hoffman

Tucked away from the natural light shining through big windows at the front of the space, the jars—stuffed with bright reds and greens—serve as a reminder that the food on the plate didn’t come from a store. It started at a farm. Then, after making its way to the restaurant, it was lovingly preserved by Chef Jeremy Hoffman, who co-owns the Main Street restaurant with his wife, Michelle.

The salad is Preserve’s most talked about dish, says Hoffman. “People say they really enjoyed it and that it’s different – something they haven’t had before.”

And it is. The combination of flavors – tangy, savory, a little bit sweet – and the impressive mix of textures, from creamy to crunchy, create something special that is wholly unique. The ingredients might be simple foods, picked and preserved in a way humans have been storing food for generations. But thanks to Hoffman’s creative mind, they’re proof that there are still new things under the sun – and in the kitchen.

 

Photography and videography courtesy of Darren Heater

Whether you’re looking for the freshest Maryland Blue Crabs, farm-to-table ingredients served by local chefs, live music venues with performances every night, or the town’s tastiest cocktails, our local bloggers are here to point you in the right direction. Every now and again, we come across a great story about this amazing county and post it under the Spotlight section of Foodie Annapolis to share with our readers. This curated content allows us to serve you a wider range of all the great tastes Annapolis & Anne Arundel County has to offer. If you’d like to be a guest blogger, or if you’d like us to share one of your blogs on Foodie Annapolis, email us at adahlgard@symmetry.agency.

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