An incredible superfood, Kale is one of the healthiest vegetables on the planet.
Our Curly Kale is versatile, it lends itself to braising, grilling, frying, baking, microwaving, juicing or salt tenderizing, and it’s also good served raw. It has a lightly bitter flavor and the stem is woody, so strip and use just the leaves.
Make fresh kale salad, kale pesto, vegetarian kale burger, kale chips, saute with your favourite aromatics and spices, braise with garlic, chillies or tomato, or boil kale and add walnuts, juice the leaves or make a kale smoothie in a high speed blender.
But if you like it soft and silky it’s best to boil it (or braise it) and it comes out decadently delicious, silky and smooth.
Kale works great in soups because the long simmering time softens it up and makes it work like any other green in a soup, only with a heavier nutritional punch. Also, it doesn’t fall apart into moist strings like spinach.
Saute on medium-high heat, a little olive oil, a clove or two of garlic, a few minutes in the pan and squirt of lemon juice or soy sauce at the end make for a terrific and fast side to just about any main dish. If you like your kale softer, add some water or broth and cover the pan for few minutes before adding the lemon juice or soy sauce. Season with herbs and spices as desired.
Kale stands up to big flavors and it is sturdy enough to survive a bit of mistreatment (e.g., being forgotten in the fridge for a few days).
There are really only two things you can do to mess up kale salad beyond repair: not removing the stems from the leaves, and not massaging the greens. Kale stems are unpleasant to eat raw and it’s easy to remove them.
And if you simply coat kale in dressing rather than massage it on, the dressing doesn’t get a chance to soak in and tenderize the kale, so the leaves stay quite tough. (And a lesser grievance is giant pieces of kale — no one can gracefully shove half a kale leaf in their mouth!)
Another method to soften the leaves for a salad so they are easier to chew is to blanch leaves by placing in a pot of boiling water for 1 minute. Drain the leaves and place into a bowl filled with ice water to quickly stop the cooking. Place leaves in a colander and gently press out excess water. Use paper towels to blot dry as needed. Blanching can also help to remove some of the bitter flavor from kale.