Kale: The New “It” Green

By Kelli Swensen, Dietetics Student, Sargent College

For the past year, nutrition power-house kale has gone from being hippie food to a staple supermarket find. If you read any nutrition articles either in magazines or online, I will bet that you’ve read about kale at least once. When I was home in Colorado last December, my mom and I went to a new buzzed about restaurant. Guess what was featured all over their menu: kale. So what’s the big deal about this strange-looking leafy green? And where can you get some yourself?

Belonging to the Brassica family, Kale is related to cabbage, collards, and Brussels sprouts, all of which are known for their high density of nutrients.

Just how healthy is kale? According to Whole Foods’ chart, 1 cup of cooked Kale (130.00 grams) contains almost all of your daily vitamin K, vitamin A, and vitamin C; along with a significant amount of your daily manganese. If you’re not impressed then think of this: 1 cup of cooked kale contains all of those nutrients for only 36 calories.

To get the most flavor and nutrition out of kale, you should first rinse it under cold water, sprinkle it with lemon juice and then let it sit for 5 minutes. We recommend the cooking kale by steaming it for 5 minutes in a steamer pot.

Be sure to check out 101 Cookbooks’ list of Kale Recipes

Picture from FarmtoTableOnline.org

This week’s CSA box contains Red Russian Kale, which has a milder taste and is less bitter than other varieties, making it the perfect way to introduce kale into your diet!

What else is in the box:

  • 1 lb. Green or Wax Beans
  • 1 bunch Carrots
  • 1 bunch Red Russian Kale
  • 1 bunch Spinach
  • 1.5 lbs. Shell Peas
  • 2 lbs. Squash
  • 1/2 pint Blueberries
  • 1 bunch Beets

Picture from Kayln's Kitchen

Red Russian Kale and Red Onion Savory Breakfast Squares
Adapted from Kayln’s Kitchen

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch Red Russian Kale, chopped
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 cup low-fat cheese (such as mozzarella or provolone)
  • 6 eggs, well beaten
  • Pinch salt and pepper
  • Optional: 1/4 cup 100% whole wheat bread crumbs

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Cut off kale stems and wash kale leaves. Dry well. Pile kale leaves and cut into strips about 3/4 inch wide, then cut the other way to create squares. Chop onion pieces about 1/2 inch
  2. Heat olive oil in large frying pan, then add onions and saute for 3 minutes. Add garlic, sauteing for 2 more minutes, then add kale and saute for 5 minutes until kale is wilted and softened.
  3. Place sauteed vegetables into large bowl and add soy sauce, cheese, bread crumbs (if using), beaten eggs, and seasonings. Stir gently until ingredients are well combined. Spray pan with olive oil or nonstick spray and pour in egg mixture. Bake 20-25 minutes until eggs are well set and the top is slightly browned


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