All Hail to Kale

Kale is a “super food”… a “nutritional powerhouse” that packs a punch of essential vitamins and other nutrients. It’s arsenal contains something called “phytochemicals” = “substances associated with the prevention of cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and hypertension…. believed to help prevent cell damage, prevent cancer cell replication, and decrease cholesterol levels.”

A descendant of wild cabbage and a cousin to broccoli and cauliflower, kale has been cultivated for two millenia. In Europe, “it was the most widely eaten green vegetable until the Middle Ages when cabbages became more popular.”  19th century Scots used kail as “a generic term for ‘dinner’ and all kitchens featured a kail-pot for cooking.” That is undoubtedly related to the fact that kale grows well in colder regions because of its resistance to frost.

I know kale from its Brazilian and Italian interpretations. Although I have never travelled to either country, I learned from friends to LOVE how they prepare kale to the delight of my palate.

Here are two recipes that will transport you from the simple to the sublime.

Brazilian Style Sauteed Kale

Brazilian Style Sauteed Kale

THE SIMPLE

INGREDIENTS

¼ cup oil (olive)
6 cloves garlic (sliced paper thin)
1 tsp coarse salt
1 tsp pepper (crushed red)
1 bunch kale (sliced thin, including stalk)

 

DIRECTIONS

HEAT oil in skillet
ADD garlic, salt, pepper and kale
MIX well
COVER skillet and cook until kale is wilted but not too soft (about 10 minutes)

Zuppa Toscana - Italian creamed soup with kale and sweet sausage

Zuppa Toscana – Italian creamed soup with kale and sweet sausage

THE SUBLIME

INGREDIENTS

¼ cup oil (olive)
1# Italian sausage (sweet, chopped in big chunks)
1x large onion (chopped)
4x white potatoes (chopped large, including skin)
8 cups water (add more according to your taste)
1 bunch kale (chopped)
1 cup heavy cream

 

SEASONING

1 tbs garlic (minced)
½ cup bouillon (chicken)
1 tbs Italian seasoning
1 tbs pepper (crushed red)

DIRECTIONS

BROWN sausage in oil
ADD seasoning & MIX well
ADD onion, potatoes & water
COVER & COOK on medium until potatoes are soft
ADD kale & cream
COOK for another 10 minutes
SERVE with good bread

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2 Comments

  1. Pete Pundt said,

    7 November 2013 at 9:56 pm

    Kale is great just boiled with bacon grease!

  2. ayoungfoodie said,

    7 November 2013 at 8:57 pm

    Never tried Kale before – I’ll have to include it in one of my recipes sometime.. thanks for sharing!


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