FOOD + DRINK, RECIPES + menus | January 11, 2011

In Season: Kale

baked kale chips :: chickpea sausage and kale pasta recipe

When a leafy green vegetable shows up on food trend lists, there must be something truly wonderful about it. That’s what made me consider kale as a new addition to our fridge’s crisper during a recent weekend grocery shopping trip.

A relative to every vegetable kids (and adults) love to hate – including cabbage, broccoli and brussel sprouts – it was kale’s pretty, curly-tipped leaves and velvety, rich green color that caught my eye.

Think kale is just a decorative plant for your fall garden? Think again. Loaded with antioxidants like vitamin C and vitamin K, it’s also rich in iron, beta carotene and calcium. Rosie Schwartz, one of Canada’s best-known nutritionists and a registered dietitian, says these antioxidants protect against heart disease, stroke and guard your eyesight. In short, kale makes spinach seem like it has the nutritional value of candy.

Cooking Tips

kale chips by honest fare

So how does it taste? The longer you store kale, the stronger and more bitter it becomes, so it’s best to use it within a day or two or purchase, as I learned the hard way. To prepare kale, wash it thoroughly to remove dirt or sand, then trim the roots and separate the leaves.

Unlike other greens, the leaves can be tough to eat raw, so cooking them is the best way to introduce your tastebuds to this new flavour. Check out the Sourcing section below for a few recipes to get you started.

Finally, check out this adorable instructional video to learn “How to Make Kale Quiche Your Kids Will Actually Eat” from Canadian food blog award finalist Sweet Potato Chronicles. There are excellent tips for how to cook kale and get your kids in on the kitchen fun.

RECIPES TO TRY:
+ Baked Kale Chips from Honey & Jam (see photo)
Chickpea, Sausage and Kale Pasta from Bitchin’ Camero (see photo)
Pomegranate and Kale Stuffed Portobello from Making Love In The Kitchen
Kale Chips from Honest Fare (see photo)
Kale, Sausage and White Bean Stew from Cooking Books
Sautéed Kale from Best Health Magazine

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One Response to “In Season: Kale”

  1. Thanks for the post! I have never had kale but I have a bunch of kale in my fridge right now so it looks like I’ll be trying one of these recipes tomorrow.