Kale is abundant this time of year, and it is oh-so healthy! It is chock full of vitamin A, and has respectable amounts of calcium, iron, protein, potassium, and vitamin C. Not to mention all the phyto-nutrients in that dark green pigment! When I first tried to cook kale, I just steamed it and served it plain, and wasn’t impressed. After some trial and error, I’ve happened on the following way to cook kale – sauteed, and tossed with toasted pine nuts and raisins. Pine nuts make any dish taste delicious, and I especially like the way the sweet raisins contrast with the strong flavor of the kale. Enjoy this one often!
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed or finely chopped
- 1 large bunch raw kale, de-stemmed and chopped *
- 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted **
- 1/4 cup raisins
- salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and sautee for about one minute. Add kale and sautee until it looks bright green all the way through (about 5 minutes). If your pan is small you may need to add kale in batches, as it will shrink as it cooks. Remove from heat and stir in pine nuts and raisins. Salt and pepper to taset, and serve immediately.
* To easily remove the stems of kale, simply hold kale by the stem (stem facing you), and push the leafy portion down the stem with your other thumb and fingers.
** To toast raw pine nuts, place them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and bake them in a 350 degree oven for about 5 minutes. You will want to check these frequently as pine nuts will burn in an instant! I recommend toasting them as your first step and having them set aside before you begin cooking the rest of your meal. It is just too easy to burn them when you are distracted with whatever else you might be cooking!