I first learned of kale in some low-key, non-glossy, “real life” magazine my mom had subscribed to during college. I started buying bunches of it (cheap – woo!) and sauteing it with garlic, serving it over pasta and sometimes drizzled with soy sauce (now I wonder ‘why?’). Did I ever make anything else with it? I’m not sure. When I got married I did this less, since TheHusband isn’t as fond of kale as I am. Queue the CSA and 16 bunches of kale over the course of 22 weeks (not to mention the swiss chard).
This year, it seems my mom has finally taken my advice to grow some kale, and now she has asked me, “but what do you do with kale? Do you boil it? Steam it?” Um….. NO! and I guess you could but that sounds awful bland to me. So what did I do with kale last year? I found evidence of 14 meals made with kale. I’m looking forward to making 4 of them again:
Trouchia (but I think I prefer cooking it in a pan in the oven for ease of removal)
So what else would I make with kale? I’ll probably try another soup, and keep throwing it together with pasta and garlic (so why not add a little cheese and white beans for protein?) – that is the one instance that I think the lacinto/dinosaur kale is preferable to other varieties. Hmmm, what is buried in my delicious bookmarks on kale? I’d love more suggestions.
And how do you prep it anyway? Generally I wash it, making sure to check the curly recesses for dirt and sand, shake off the excess water and quickly strip the leafy bits from the stem with my hands. From there I either coarsely chop or finely chop depending on the recipe. I think kale stands up to a saute and think that sauteing is a lot easier and faster than boiling water for steaming. Personally the only time I liked the kale blanched was in the burritos (and that was as much about quickly reducing bulk as anything else), braising however has high hopes as the tagine proved to be delicious.