How to Cook Kale like a Pro

Kale is a leafy green vegetable that is packed with antioxidants and is also a good source of: calcium, magnesium and vitamins A, C, E and K. Unfortunately, this nutrient powerhouse is often left on grocery store shelves to wilt because traditional cooking methods leave it limp and bitter. I implore you to grab a bunch of kale (collards or other leafy green vegetable) and to keep reading to discover cooking techniques that improve the flavor of kale and other dark leafy greens. 

Blanch your greens to decrease bitterness and create a pleasing al dente texture.

Cooks Tip: How to blanche. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (pretend you are making pasta). Add dark leafy greens and cook for about 2 minutes or until bright green and al dente (have a slightly firm-crunchy texture). Drain into a colander and shock (stop the cooking process) by plunging into an ice water bath. 

Add a pinch of heat. Don’t let greens be bland/boring. Add ginger paste, black pepper, sriracha or your favorite sauce.

Dress them up with flavorful fats like avocados, nuts, seeds or your favorite dressing.

Add citrus juice and zest at the end of cooking. Sour citrus like lemon and lime mask bitterness. 

Sauté. This method of cooking allows you to add layers of flavor and also helps to prevent overcooking.

Cooks tip: Try something new! Over medium heat sauté  onions until soft, reduce heat and add minced garlic, red pepper flakes, kale and sliced kumquats. Continue cooking until kale is al dente.

Do not overcook your greens! Why? Texture is often a key factor in food preference. For example, a child who won’t touch overcooked soft/soggy broccoli might eat an entire bowl of crunchy blanched broccoli with their favorite dressing. 

Be well.

 

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