New to Me Vegetable – Kale

super food kale

Over the past few years I keep reading about how kale is a super food, that it is one of the most nutritious foods out there.  I have wanted to try it, but have been hesitant because I’ve also heard that it can be tough and somewhat bitter.  It is also high in oxalates, which while not a concern for most people, it is something to avoid for those that have kidney stones.  Unfortunately, Greg gets kidney stones, so this is not a vegetable that he should consume frequently.

Yesterday I was leafing through the June issue of Food Network Magazine and came across this recipe.  It looked delicious and I decided this would be the way I would try kale.  I found some kale at the grocery store in the afternoon, and our experiment with kale began.

Here is the end result. 

kale sauteed with bacon and apple cider vinegar

It was delicious!  The greens really took on the flavour of all the ingredients in which it was sautéed.  The apple cider vinegar provided sweetness, with the garlic, onion and bacon as a perfect savory contrast.  The bacon added just a bit of crunch, which gave the greens a bit of great texture.  And most importantly, the kale was not tough and not at all bitter.  This is definitely a vegetable side that I will prepare again. 

I know that bacon isn’t at all a healthy food, but a little bacon once in a while is okay.  I think that the kale would also be delicious prepared with some garlic and onion sautéed in olive oil and with a bit of balsamic vinegar added.  To serve, I would sprinkle a bit of goat cheese over the greens (I love goat cheese with balsamic) and a bit of pecans for some crunch.       

I think that part of the reason that this dish was successful, other than a great recipe of course, was that I removed the stems/ribs.  Although many recipes indicated they should be included, they just appeared too fibrous to me. 

The back side of the kale leaves.  You can see the large, tough stems and ribs.

The back side of the kale leaves. You can see the large, tough stems and ribs.

The recipe did call for baby kale, and mine definitely was not young kale, which would be more tender than the more mature leaves that I used.

The Canada Food Guide recommends that we eat at least one dark green vegetable (and one orange vegetable) each day.  Kale, a  member of the cabbage family, fits the bill.  

Kale really is a powerhouse in nutritents.  One cup of kale provides an astonishing 1327% of the daily recommended intake of vitamin K, 354% of vitamin A, 89% of vitamin C, 27% of manganese, 10% of both fibre and copper, and 9% of tryptophan, calcium and vitamin B6. 

Kale is available all year, but is at its peak from mid-winter to early spring.    

 

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4 thoughts on “New to Me Vegetable – Kale

  1. I just love eating kale sauteed with garlic, salt & pepper. I also like them in smoothies with something sweet like apples and ginger.

    • Oh, never thought about using it in a smoothie. And with apple and ginger sound like a great combo. Will have to try this.

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