Tag Archives: kale

Orange, Pancetta, and baby kale salad with honey-Pancetta vinaigrette

Orange, Pancetta, and baby kale salad with honey-Pancetta vinaigrette

Honey Pancetta Salad 2
As we ease into these cooler months, we tend to crave warm, heartwarming comfort foods like roasts, stews, casseroles and soups. Though it probably doesn’t first come to mind when thinking of autumn and winter foods, salad certainly shouldn’t be an option that’s taken off the (dinner) table. Sure, iceberg with Ranch dressing will be a little out of season to serve, but there are many other roughage and topping ingredients that are plentiful in the produce aisle during these next two seasons. Apples, avocado, citrus, beets, figs, and grapes, are great fruit and vegetable options, while arugula, spinach, escarole, baby kale, and endive all make great lettuce bases.

A great example of a salad that’s fit to serve in fall or winter is the following recipe that features citrus, crisp and salty Pancetta, hearty baby kale greens and a tangy, salty, sweet vinaigrette. Best of all, this salad can be served warm, as the vinaigrette is essentially cooked and and be rewarmed on the stove top just before serving if need be.
Read the rest of this entry

Creamed Kale and Sweet Onions: Try this (slightly) healthier twist on classic creamed spinach

Creamed Kale and Sweet Onions: Try this (slightly) healthier twist on classic creamed spinach

Creamed Kale text

For my next autumn fare installment, I decided to take a classic comfort dish, creamed spinach, and give it a more modern makeover by using the very popular cruciferous vegetable kale in place of the spinach. Kale has such a great reputation for being so healthy and nutritious, so I figured it could handle being slathered with a butter-laden cream sauce. The vitamins and minerals in kale negate some of the calories in the sauce, right?

I’ve seen creamed spinach done every which way — simmered with cream, mixed with cream cheese, etc. — but I’m a fan of using the old school, classic Bechamel sauce for this application. It’s quick, easy, and it’s a good basic sauce-making skill to have in your culinary repertoire (if you don’t already). Bechamel is one of the five basic “Mother Sauces” in classic French cuisine made up of a roux and milk. A roux is a thickening agent for liquids that is equal parts fat (butter, oil, animal fat, etc.) and flour cooked together before adding the liquid.

Try this out on your table this season for a (somewhat) healthier take on the standard creamed spinach. It’s a side that’s sure to please even the pickiest eater or green veggie hater.
Read the rest of this entry

Sinful Sides: Indulge in this creamy kale and butternut squash gratin

Sinful Sides: Indulge in this creamy kale and butternut squash gratin

Your waistline may hate me, but your taste buds will thank me.

Forget the lean turkey and ham, the holidays all about the tasty, rich side dishes. These are some of the only days of the year that most folks let themselves indulge in rich, indulgent foods without a second thought on the calorie count (until the following day). Even healthy vegetables like sweet potatoes, green beans and kale get an oleaginous makeover with additions of bacon, butter and cream. Why? Because they make foods taste better!

If you’re going to load up on calories, it had better be worth it and taste amazing, and this following side dish is just that. So don’t even bother trying to make a “lightened up” version of this butternut squash and kale gratin with skim milk and light butter spread, go all the way with whole milk, cream and good quality cheese. Your waistline may hate me, but your taste buds will thank me.
Read the rest of this entry

Bet you can’t eat just one: Kale chips are crispy, crunchy and highly addictive

Bet you can’t eat just one: Kale chips are crispy, crunchy and highly addictive

Kale is an amazing super-vegetable. A cousin to collards and cauliflower, kale is low in calories and highly nutritious; high in beta carotene, vitamins C and K, lutein, rich in calcium, with powerful antioxidant properties.

On many menus, kale is only seen in its steamed or stir-fried form. But kale is very versatile and can be cooked using a variety of methods. Did you know you can bake it? The result: a crispy, flavor-packed, nutritious snack that’s so addictive, I’ll bet you can’t eat just one chip.
Read the rest of this entry