Pick of the Week: Kale

Kale. This stuff is the big-time in the blog world. I’ve seen tons of recipes that use it, but never been brave enough to try it on my own. I decided it was the perfect time to give it a go. It is, after all, one of the healthiest vegetables around. It’s packed with Vitamins K, A & C!

I added it to my grocery list and off I went. Let me first of all just tell you that I was SHOCKED at how big my bundle of kale was! I could barely get it in the bag! The bundle was almost as tall as my 24 oz water bottle and took up almost half of the bottom shelf in my refrigerator before I cut it down to a more manageable size!

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The first thing I tried was Kale Chips. I’ve read dozens of posts about them…here, here, here, here, here…you get the idea!

Bad news folks….I didn’t like them. First of all, they get VERY crunchy…which I generally like.  But these get so crunchy that they just kind of disintegrate in your mouth…kind of like I imagine it would be like biting into ashes or something. I want you guys to know that I tried really hard to like them. I ate half the bowl, but I just couldn’t get into them. The good news is that there was one chip that didn’t get ask crispy as the others, it was a little soggy- and i LIKED it! So that gave me hope that I might like kale a different way.

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Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to discourage you from trying them. I’m going to give you the recipe and I want you to try them for yourself. I know tons of people that LOVE them. Just not for me…

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Kale Chips

1/2 a bunch of kale
EVOO
black pepper
salt
red pepper, optional
paprika, optional

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Pull the curly kale leaves off the thick stems.
3. Wash and spin dry.
4. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet.
5. Drizzle with olive oil and rub onto all the leaves.
6. Sprinkle with a little bit of salt and pepper (and red pepper/paprika if desired).
7. Bake for 20 minutes or until slightly brown on the edges and crispy.

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Kinda pretty, right? While the kale chips were cooking, I pulled the rest of the leaves off the rest of the stems (just hold the stem in one hand and move your hand from one end to the other, pulling the leaves off as you go) and washed them. I stored them in a ziploc bag and they were ready to go for the rest of the week.

Next, I tried a raw kale salad. Just like it sounds…kale, topped with carrots, tomato, red pepper and Italian dressing:

DSC 69681 300x200 Pick of the Week: Kale It was delicious! The hubby liked it too. We ate kale salads twice this week. One night with kale by itself and one night with half kale and half spinach! I’ll definitely be making more kale salads in the future.

And finally,  we tried wilted kale. For my go-to dinner, I cooked some sweet potatoes and garlic in chicken broth and then added some kale and spinach and let them wilt. This version was also delicious. Apparently I enjoy kale in all forms except chip.

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Overall, kale week was a big success! I’ll definitely be buying it again.

So tell me, what’s your favorite way to eat kale?

–Lindsay–

About Lindsay

Lindsay Livingston is a Registered Dietitian from Columbus, Ohio. On her blog, she shares simple, healthy recipes, nutrition tips, workouts and snapshots of her life. Follow her on Twitter @LeanGrnBeanBlog and Instagram @TheLeanGreenBean and be sure to subscribe via RSS or email so you never miss a post!


Comments

  1. I’m with you on the kale chips! I have tried all kinds of brands (but never making my own) and I cannot stand the flavor as well as the crunchiness. One blog trend that I absolutely do not get :)

  2. Ok, so we hated kale chips too – we actually threw them away, and we NEVER throw out food! I’m glad I’m not the only one who didn’t like them :)

  3. I made them for my blog because some of my non-blog friends heard me talking about them and asked for a how to. I choked them down because I hate to waste food but they were not my favorite. I’ll eat it some other ways sometimes but not as a chip.

  4. Oh I LOVE kale. I eat it raw, sauteed on its own, cooked with pasta, as a substitute for spinach in nearly every way. It is super easy to grow in Ohio too – it likes to mature in cold weather, so direct sow early in spring (early april) or late summer (august) and let it rip. Cutting the leaves for harvest encourages new growth on the plant. You can even grow it in a container!

    One way I love to eat it in summer especially is a marinated raw kale salad. I discovered it at Basi Italia restaurant and worked up a recipe here: http://houndsinthekitchen.com/2010/06/29/overnight-marinated-kale-salad/

  5. i’m sad you didn’t like kale chips! i got them in my csa a lot this summer, otherwise i’m not sure i would have tried them. there were a couple batches that i thought were a little un-spectacular, but i made them with grated parmesan cheese once and it was SO GOOD!

    cheese makes anything better!

    • hmmm….cheese does usually help! but i’m not sure these can be saved enough to agree with my tastebuds :) we’ll see. they might get a second try sometime!

  6. I admit, I’m a BIG kale chips fan. We also love it wilted, then sauteed in a bit of olive oil and garlic. I shouldn’t say “we”, my husband isn’t much of a fan, but I love it. Thanks for the post and pictures. Have a great weekend.

  7. I love Kale…especially kale chips!

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