For Love of Kale

New Cookbook Wisdom

Eat Your Vegetables, a new book by Joe Yonan, a Washington Post food columnist, has recipes designed for oneEat Your Vegetables by Joe Yonan. His easily expandable and flexible recipes preach his wisdom that they offer "guidelines" not directives. He wants "...readers to use their own judgment about quantity and ingredients."  Important concerns for readers are "What am I in the mood for?" and the pragmatic "What ingredients do I have?"

With both questions in mind, let's visit with kale, a supremely tasty and nutritious vegetable that has attained gourmet status. 

Yonan's Sweet Potato Galette with Mushroom and Kale is a knockout presentation and a great combo for the taste buds (pages 88-90):

  1. Suggested ingredients to saute are garlic, onion, mushrooms, and walnut halves, seasoned with salt, pepper, smoky pimento and/or red pepper with the kale stems.
  2. When the mixture becomes translucent, add the kale leaves.
  3. Slice the raw sweet potatoes with skin on to a 1/8 inch thickness. In an oiled baking pan, spread potato slices in a circle.
  4. Place the cooked mixture on top of the slices.
  5. On the top, layer potatoes with a sprinkling of grated gruyere cheese.
  6. Bake at 400 degrees until slices are cooked about 6 minutes.  
The Everyday DASH Diet Cookbook by Marla Heller, MS, RDAdventurous and fearless cooks will play with the Sweet Potato Galette ingredients. Instead of cheese, one can add fresh ginger and a few dried sour cherries. Other spice favorites to deploy are sumac and fenugreek leaves.

Additional evidence of kale's wonders can be found in The Everyday DASH Diet Cookbook by Marla Heller, MS, RD. The book has a smoothie recipe with kale, apples, apple cider vinegar and sunflower seeds that can be revamped into a pesto (page 17)! (Just use apple cider vinegar instead of apple cider.) Pesto flavors are heightened by the additional of red pepper flakes.

Don't panic at the absence of amounts! Persist with the notion of playing with quantities.

Don't want a challenge? An easy method is to bake curly kale for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. First, use an olive oil spray on the baking sheet then spice the kale leaves to your liking and spray them with oil. This taste tactic could possibly replace your cravings for chips. 

Readers are urged to check out Eat Your Vegetables and The Everyday DASH Diet Cookbook for further vegetarian adventures. Brave readers do season your explorations with Yonan's call for experimentation.