Ride or Die, bitch. Ride or die.
Kale has taken off like crazy in recent years. So much so, that Bon Appetite recently called Kale the “basic bitch” of the internet. When I first started eating kale 10 years ago, I was like what the f*ck is this!? And why does it taste so damn bad!? But overtime, I’ve actually began to love the flavor… Like, in a seriously addicted sort of way.
But even in its popularity, I still have tons of friends who either a) will order it when out, but are too intimidated to make it at home, or b) still think it tastes like shit.
So here’s a quick post to help those who are scared to death of kale, learn to enjoy it. I promise you, you’ll start to crave the flavor and the nutrients!
Two common types of Kale:
- Lacinato Kale (also called Dino Kale)
- Curly Kale (traditional curly leaf kale)
Curly Kale is the most mild in flavor and for beginners, is what I suggest. Dino (while my favorite) has a much stronger flavor and can be off putting to newbies.
Preparation: Kale stems NEED to be removed… gurrrl, don’t make me repeat that. Save the the stems for smoothies, but you’ll need to remove for salads.
- Steam: You can lightly blanch for 2-4 minutes to release the liquid and break down the fiber of the plant. Sometimes this method is nice to create a heartier salad with a bit more depth.
- Massage: Remove stems, cut into bite sized pieces and toss in a bowl with olive oil, lemon juice and sea salt (you want a combo of acid, oil, salt). Roll up your sleeves and get to work – massage the kale vigorously for a few minutes until the fibers have been broken down and it takes on the appearance of sautéed greens. Toss with additional ingredients/dressing and enjoy!
- Sautéed: I prefer using coconut oil, as I feel it has a nice flavor against the greens. Use standard method – be sure not to burn greens.
Ingredient Compliments + Suggested Pairings:
Almonds, apples, avocados, basil, beans, beets, bell peppers, brussels sprouts, cabbage, caraway seeds, carrots, chickpeas, chilies, chives, cranberries, garlic, ginger, greens, leeks, lemon, lentils, mushrooms, dijion mustard, nuts, oil, olive, onions, pesto, potatoes, raisins, rice, rosemary, salt, scallions, soy sauce, sweet potatoes, tamari, tofu, tomatoes, vinegar, walnuts.
Kale + Apples + Balsamic Vinegar + Walnuts
Kale + Avocado + Lemon + Orange + Pistachios
Kale + Beets + Walnuts
Kale + Garlic + Lemon
Kale + Chilies + Garlic + Ginger
Health benefits from a single cup (move over synthetic vitamins):
- Vitamin A: 206% of the RDA (from beta-carotene).
- Vitamin K: 684% of the RDA.
- Vitamin C: 134% of the RDA.
- Vitamin B6: 9% of the RDA.
- Manganese: 26% of the RDA.
- Calcium: 9% of the RDA.
- Copper: 10% of the RDA.
- Potassium: 9% of the RDA.
- Magnesium: 6% of the RDA.
So give this icon, meme, and metaphor a try this year – Kale yeah!