This is a refrain I hear all the time. The most “egregious” (according to its detractors) is kale. You know I’m a kale fan, but I can understand how this fibrous, unfamiliar vegetable can be challenging for some people. It doesn’t taste like peas, beans, or carrots. It can be earthy. It looks funny. And it can be tough if not prepared correctly.
So what can you do with kale? Here are some ways we like it in our house:
In smoothies. You need to pair it with something very flavourful and colourful. Try a banana, a beet, and some ginger and cinnamon, in addition to plant milk. The beet will keep it from looking green (or worse, brown). Cocoa powder is another addition that can really make a difference. Or go full-on green and instead of the beets, add an avocado.
In a delicious soup with onions, chickpeas, a little potato, and chorizo. Basically chop it and sweat it with a lot of onion (three or more, diced), then add a chopped potato, a diced chorizo, a couple of cups of cooked chickpeas, and enough water to fill a large pot (like a French or Dutch oven). Simmer until everything is tender. Thanks to the onion and chorizo it will make its own broth.
Kale chips – fans swear by these but I will fully admit I’ve eaten them but never made them at home.
In a stir-fry. Much like cabbage, sliced thinly, it will take on the flavours of the other ingredients.
Last but not least, in a salad. Chop it relatively finely. Don’t use the stems or tough ribs. And mix it with a tender lettuce (like cos or Bibb) and a watery, juicy one (like iceberg or romaine).
I hope you’ll at least give it a try. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Here are some menu plans for next week! You can see we are still using up the gallons of turkey soup I made. If you don’t have turkey soup, that’s okay – but make a homemade soup. It’ll have far less salt and be better for you, and a large pot will make several lunches worth, that you can freeze and reheat when you’re ready.
|Sunday||January 21st||Leftover quiche||EatingWell Tomato Basil Zoodle Salad||Weight Watchers Barley Chicken Casserole|
|Monday||January 22nd||Beet and Kale Smoothie||Cooking Light Roasted Sweet Potato and Orange Salad||Jamie Oliver Sicilian Spaghetti Alla Norma|
|Tuesday||January 23rd||Granola with 1/2 banana||Homemade Turkey Soup with 1 whole grain bread and 5ml butter||Weight Watchers Zucchini Risotto with Sundried Tomatoes|
|Wednesday||January 24th||Banana Kale Smoothie||Apple Kale Salad||Weight Watchers Orange Couscous with Chicken (substituting turkey) – served with green beans|
|Thursday||January 25th||Apple Nut Oatmeal||Homemade Turkey Soup with 1 whole grain bread and 5ml butter||Weight Watchers Spaghetti with Kale and Garlic|
|Friday||January 26th||Carrot Cake Smoothie||Cooking Light Fall Vegetable and Lentil Salad||Weight Watchers Cod with Parsley Sauce served with steamed green beans and carrots|
|Saturday||January 27th||Granola with 1/2 banana||Homemade Turkey Soup with 1 whole grain bread and 5ml butter||Artichoke Pizza|