Do you like beans and greens? Before you say bah-humbug, whip up a pot. Humble beans and lowly greens create the loveliest dish that can be enjoyed on its own, with a spicy sausage, or as a hearty side dish to accompany nearly any meat main. Last week I went a step further and put a fried egg on top. Some might say that adding a fried egg is a fleeting food fad, but I say it makes beans & greens swanky. The runny yolk adds a rich, creamy, golden layer of flavor.
Beans & Greens
Serves 2 to 3
1 bunch organic kale, destemmed and chopped
Salt & pepper
Fresh ground nutmeg (optional)
Red chili flakes (optional)
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup chicken stock
1 can white beans (great northern, cannellini), rinsed & drained
- Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven. Add kale, turning often until wilted. Add salt, pepper, nutmeg, chili flakes, and garlic.
- Deglaze the pan by adding some chicken stock. Pour in white beans. Add more chicken stock as desired. Simmer until warmed through.
- Enjoy as is, with chicken sausage, or get fancy.
Salt & pepper
- While beans & greens simmer, fry some eggs to over easy or over medium—whatever you prefer as long as the yolk is still runny. Sprinkle with salt & pepper as they cook.
- Serve on top of a pile of beans & greens with a side of toast. Or, if you happen to have thick, crusty bread, lying around, pile everything on top. Sprinkle with a generous amount of fresh grated Parmesan.
Kale has become quite the staple at my house—one or two bags find their way into my cart every time I visit the grocery. You know I love kale chips. The hearty green is also great in soups because it can take the heat. But last night I tried something new with kale that I’m already craving again: raw kale salad. I swiped the recipe from Bites who borrowed the idea from Tavern (which I have yet to visit but will soon now that I have eaten this).
Via Bites (their pic was sunshine-filled and, therefore, prettier but mine tasted just as good)
I was afraid the salad would be bitter, but the raisins add just enough sweetness, the Parmesan gives a salty bite, and the pine nuts provide a layer of texture. I plan to start making huge batches to take to parties and to keep on hand in case I get the munchies at any point in time. Because who could feel bad about eating a bowlful of this healthy goodness?
Raw Kale Salad
Adapted from Bites, Via Tavern
Serves 2 side salads or 1 entrée salad
1 bag kale, de-stemmed and chopped finely in food processor to tabbouleh consistency
1 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan
½ cup raisins
¼ cup pine nuts
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Salt & fresh ground black pepper to taste
- Whisk together the lemon juice and olive oil in a bowl. Add the chopped kale and toss to coat.
- Add the Parmesan, raisins, pine nuts, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Toss to distribute throughout. Enjoy!
Next time, I think I’ll:
- Make more of this. Y’all—I ate the entire thing. Like, I ate a whole bag of raw kale in one sitting. And you know what? It was awesome.
Yet another CSA treasure got cooked up yesterday in my kitchen. This time the special ingredient was the oh-so-hearty green favorite, kale. Although I have sautéed kale with garlic and added it to soups many times, I had never made kale chips. So, it seemed like the right thing to do. And guess what? It was super easy and turned out to be a delightfully salty little snack. My dear friend Caroline, who is gluten intolerant and therefore always looking for new GF munchies, wholeheartedly approved. And like she said, “I could eat this instead of popcorn while I’m watching a movie!” Indeed. We should put it in zip-lock bags and go see “Bridesmaids.” Because that movie theater popcorn is like a million dollars. (You know, if I did the math right.)
Baked Kale Chips
Serves 2 during a 90 minute film
1 bunch kale, rinsed & dried thoroughly
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ teaspoon kosher or sea salt
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Remove tough stems from kale and tear into bite-sized pieces. (Keep in mind that the kale will cook down quite a bit, so tear accordingly.)
- On a baking sheet, toss the kale with the olive oil and salt using your hands. Arrange in one layer.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the kale is browned but not burned. Be sure to watch the time—too little and the kale will be soggy, too much and you’ll have char on your hands.
- Go easy on the salt. I used 1 teaspoon and it was too much, which is saying a lot because I love salty stuff.
- These are called “chips,” but don’t expect something sturdy that you could use for dipping. The texture is more like tissue paper and about as filling.