Sunday, September 30, 2012

KALE, the superstar of superfoods!





Kale is a superstar standout of vegetables that is not only low in calories, provides so many vitamins and minerals but its also packed with fiber and phytonutrients as well.  Remember phytonutrients? Some are  antioxidants and some have anti inflammatory compounds that have important health benefits. Kale has some of the old standby phytonutrients and antioxidants such as beta carotene and vitamin C but also some recently discovered ones such as kaempferol and quercitin, to name a few.
The micronutrient standouts in KALE include vitamins K,C, A and the mineral Manganese, however KALE is also a great source of vitamin B6, and the minerals Copper, Calcium and Potassium. With only 20 CALORIES per half cup serving you cannot go wrong with this nutrient dense veggie.

HOW DO YOU PREPARE KALE?
I tried 2 simple recipes today.

The way to prepare KALE and retain the highest amount of nutrients is to simply steam it.  
First wash and cut off the thick stems at the bottom (some may say you can throw those in the steamer as well), then chop up the KALE in approximately 1/2" slices. 
Throw it in a steamer of boiling water, cover and cook for 5 minutes.

What I did was make some garlic flavored cous cous and tossed it with the steamed KALE, sliced cherry tomatoes and a homemade lemon dressing (see below).  It was delicious!

Lemon Dressing
1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
1/4 cup Lemon Juice
1/2 cup Olive Oil
1 1/2 tsp Kosher Salt
3/4 tsp Pepper
You can add feta cheese, olives, pine nuts, cranberries, whatever your family likes! Make it your own.

Another recipe that I found online was KALE CHIPS:





  • Preheat oven to 340 degrees
  • Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  • Cut the KALE as described in the recipe above.
  •  For one bunch of KALE toss with 1 Tbsp of olive oil and season with Kosher Salt.
  •  Put the KALE on the baking tray with the curly side down so it looks like a little upside down V. 
  • Bake for 10 minutes.
The KALE should be crispy and almost melt in your mouth. You may have to adjust oven temperatures and cooking times for your oven. It is something to experiment with and also change up by using different seasonings such as Parmesan Cheese, chili powder, salt and vinegar, garlic, etc.

MOMS, TRY PUTTING THIS OUT FOR YOUR KIDS AFTER SCHOOL AS A SNACK. While the KALE CHIPS may not be the most photogenic of all snacks its really worth it! Let me know how it goes for you!

20 comments:

  1. my mom use KALE in just about everything like collar green salads soups etc she sauteed, chopped, baked, marinated and even blend it .
    i love it gives a unique taste i want her to try the kale chip something i would never have thought of cant wait to try it hopefully my daughter would enjoy it too .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lucretia, if your mom has any unique recipes using Kale, let me know! The Kale chips are seemingly easy to make but you have to get the temperature and cooking time just right for your oven so it may take a few tries to get them just right!

      Delete
  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Even though I am a foreigner i think i will be willing to try this food because we use a lot of kale in our food
    And besides i didn't know it was healthy until today.good thing that I am taking this class. new knowledge, that's priceless!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Michele,first you need the information, then you can see how your diet stacks up. You are off to a good start.

      Delete
  4. Hello,


    We bumped into your blog and we really liked it - great recipes YUM YUM.
    We would like to add it to the Petitchef.com.

    We would be delighted if you could add your blog to Petitchef so that our users can, as us,
    enjoy your recipes.

    Petitchef is a french based Cooking recipes Portal. Several hundred Blogs are already members
    and benefit from their exposure on Petitchef.com.

    To add your site to the Petitchef family you can use http://en.petitchef.com/?obj=front&action=site_ajout_form or just go to Petitchef.com and click on "Add your site"

    Best regards,

    petitchef.com

    ReplyDelete
  5. It is amazing to know that we are all connected by food worldwide. The only difference is in the preparation. Am African and sometimes scared of cetain vegatables i see on the shelves in the stores. However knowing the importance of fruits and vegatables and all their nutrional values makes me want to learn and consume more. Am still in the learning process of identifying thier classes and what they can do for your health. Thanks for your knowledge in teaching some of us whom do not know much. Its really appeciated. (WE. NUT 109)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can never go wrong by trying new things. What's the worst that will happen?!

      Delete
  6. Our new found food love. We are just loving kale, what a super food.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I finally got around to makeing the kale chips. They were fantastic!! I'm going to try some different seasoning too. My 4year old even liked it!!

    Julie L. nutrition 109

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Julie,
      That is so great. I am wondering if you played around with the oven temperature and time because I have read so much about baking the kale at just the precise temp and time.

      Delete
    2. Yes I had to reduce the temp after the first batch because it burnt right up!

      Delete
  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Can you eat Kale raw? Like in a salad! Or is it necesary/or best to steam it. From TerryMuniz@gmail.com let me know direct please. great info...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Terry,
      Yes, you can eat Kale raw! It is part of the cabbage family. Enjoy!

      Delete
  10. Hi There!

    I recently came across an absolutely GORGEOUS recipe with Kale as its base, it is essentially a snack and I didnt invent it myself but saw it on a programme ,anyway its easy,

    INGREDIENTS

    Kale

    Fresh Chiili

    Honey

    Natural Peanut Butter

    Soya Sauce

    Chinese 5 Spice

    Fresh Garlic

    A little olive oil.

    Method.

    Put your kale in a salad bowl and add a few drops of olive oil.
    Massage the kale to soften it up.
    Now chop up a clove of garlic and a dice one red chilli
    Put the garlic and chilli into a seperate dish and now add a small spoon of honey and a good dollop of peanut butter, now sprinkle on a bit of the soya sauce,enough to give the mixture a good consistency, finally throw on a bit (not too much) chinese 5 spice and now mix it all together.

    Now just dollop it on to the Kale and what you have is an unreal mixture of all kinds of flavour, this is so good that I have had vegetable haters coming back for seconds! They are all natural ingredients and its good for you,try it!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I just recently started eating kale because I heard how healthy it is for you. I made a salmon dish with kale and cannellini beans which was delicious but I could see how some people would shy away from the texture of kale. I am still going to eat it because of its nutritional value but my friends mom told me about a smoothie she makes with fruit and some kale. This could work for people who do not like the taste or texture of kale because she still gets the nutrients from the vegetable but the other fruits in the smoothie mask the taste she doesn't like. - AOakley (Nutrition 101)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is so true and a great suggestion for those who may not be a kale fan or even a veggie fan. Blend them into a smoothie and you get a blast of vitamins, minerals, fiber and other super nutrients.

      Delete
  12. I recently started using kale in my salad. I was looking for a way to keep my salads fresh and crisp longer. I replaced my lettuce with kale. I have found that kale has a flavor all on it's own unlike lettuce. I find it easier to use a vinigerett dressing which adds very little flavoring to the salad because it has a new taste with the addition of kale. Loving my new salad :) LJenkins(Nutrition 101)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, Kale has a very distinct flavor that can help change up your salad!

      Delete