Kale has been getting a lot of attention lately for its versatility in recipes and its rich nutrient content. Kale is a leafy vegetable that is in the same family as collard and mustard greens. The most common kale is green but other kale varieties are purple, white, and pink. Like other green leafy vegetables kale is loaded with vitamins and minerals: calcium, folic acid, potassium, magnesium, vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, and vitamin K. Kale contains antioxidants that have cancer fighting properties. It also has properties that may reduce cholesterol levels. People taking blood thinning medications need to ask their doctors before consuming vegetables such as kale that are high in vitamin K, as they may negatively interfere with these medications.
Choose kale that is vibrant in color, crisp and sturdy to the touch. Make sure to rinse the leaves under cold running water before consuming or cooking. Kale can be eaten raw or cooked and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to five days. The woody stem in the middle should be removed prior to eating. Kale can be steamed, sautéed, boiled, baked or stir fry. Kale has become a popular addition to smoothies and has gained popularity as a potato chip alternative.
My five year old daughter and I had fun making Kale Chips. It was really easy. I cleaned the kale and she helped tear the leaves in pieces. She enjoyed stirring in the ingredients and laying the “chips” out on the baking pan. I was surprised how crisp the kale chips were after being baked and how good they tasted, although there was an interesting metallic after taste. Kale is a nutrient power house and I look forward to using it more in soups and salads.
- 1 bunch kale
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
- Remove by hand or with a knife leaves from the thick stems and tear into bite size pieces.
- Wash and dry kale.
- Place kale in a bowl and add all ingredients, mix well.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes.
The internet is loaded with great recipes on how to incorporate kale into recipes. I enjoy the Cupcakes and Kale Chips web page with 30 fun and easy kale recipes.