Tag Archives: Kale

Spicy Peanut Stew

In my pantry today:

  • 1 lg sweet potato in 1-2″ chunks
  • 1 14 oz can black beans
  • 1 tbsp grapeseed oil (Olive is totes fine too)
  • 1 c minced onion
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 celery stalk in 1/2″-1″ bits
  • 3/4 c frozen corn
  • 1/2 c minced kale
  • 1/2 c creamy peanut butter
  • 1 14 oz can diced/crushed tomatoes w/ green chile
  • 1-2 c vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (or to taste)
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • dash of asafoetida

peanut-stewIt’s a strange winter that’s seen a lot of beautiful spring days and a few notably polar ones. If it’s going to be cold any particular evening, a soup or stew is what to have on the stove. Not to get all June Cleaver on y’alls tails, but I love knowing something will be ready the minute my darling returns from a long day of work. Stews’ll let you have that. Tonight I’m trying a West African-inspired peanut stew that made friends with the inside of my cupboard.

120507061131-tv-mom-june-cleaver-barbara-billingsley-horizontal-gallery

RIP, Barbara Billingsly

When your oil in a large pot reaches the high side of medium-low, add your seasonings to the oil and mix it into a paste. Then mix in the kale onion, garlic and celery. Let that cook for 5-10 minutes, and upon your return add the tomatoes peanut butter, stirring it in until smooth. Add the can of beans (liquid ‘n all) and as much broth as your taste permits. Put diced sweet potato in pot and let it come to a leisurely boil on M before covering it, turning the burner to L and walking away until your sweet potatoes are tender (At least 45 minutes).

This is a gluten-free and vegan recipe, but… wait, come back! You didn’t let me finish.

This is a gluten-free and vegan recipe, but use chicken instead of vegetable broth or, heck, add actual chicken and you’ve got an inarguably good dinner at 5 spoons.

Parsley-Kale Pesto (or, “I can’t believe it’s kale!”)

In my pantry today:

  • 4 c (cooked) whole wheat thin spaghetti
  • 2 c parsley
  • 1 c marinated kale
  • 4 L cloves garlic
  • 1 c walnuts
  • 2/3 c olive oil
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/4 c Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt (or to taste, y’know?)

Kale-Parsley PestoWell we had spaghetti sauce and salad stuff, but neither one of us necessarily felt like being transported tonight via flavor to the isle of Sicily. Maybe something a wee bit lighter (-seeming, at the very least) like olive oil and garlic? Then a bulb came on above both our heads at the same moment — pesto!

Since kinda-recently learning of coconut oil’s health benefits I’ve been trying to incorporate it into my cooking — the trick there is not to make coconut pasta, so tread lightly. It, the whole wheat pasta and walnuts are the main proteins here (unless you wanna count the Parmesan too, but ’tis a mere pittance), nevertheless feel free to add chicken or shrimp if you don’t believe in things like that.

Parsley-Kale PestoAlso, ha! Made ya like kale, right?

Put all that stuff in the food processor and let it whirl until — magically — pesto appears! Adjust the oil if you want it more/less soupy. With the minimal amount of coconut in a dish that roars of garlic, there was a faint hint of Thai in this dish… just enough to make it delicious and foreign, but not enough to make it taste counterintuitively unfamiliar.

I had enough left over from our [2 person] meal that I used 2 tbsp of it to make a pesto vinaigrette (this stuff, red wine vinegar and a little more olive oil) and still had 1/3 c of it to put in the freezer. 5 spoons.

Creamy Kale-fredo

In my pantry today:

  • 2 c mezze penne pasta
  • 1 c minced, marinated* kale
  • 1/2 c cashew butter
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1.5 c chicken broth (for equitable option, use veggie broth)
  • 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • dash turmeric

kalefredoAll the creaminess of an Alfredo with none of the cream! This is not to say I was gunning for an Alfredo sauce when I started, but the richness and flavor reaped by cashew butter is a worthy replacement for actual cream. Start this whole shebang by mincing your garlic and letting it simmer in a pot on M for a few minutes (I washed dishes).

Upon your return to the stove, smack the cashew butter up in that pot. Add broth slowly; stir to meld the two. Heck, go on and stir in all the seasonings while you’re at it. Once everything has made friends with one another, introduce the lemon juice and kale; cover and simmer on L for a few minutes while you cook the pasta. Drain it and add to the sauce pot. Toss everything together and let it sit on L for at least 5m (let the pasta saturate itself in flavortown) before digging in. 5 spoons!

kale*The equation I use for making marinated kale is: KALE (- STEMS + A FEW DROPS OIL) + FOOD PROCESSOR x 15 MINUTE WAIT = “MARINATED” KALE

Spicy Kale-sadilla

In my pantry today:

  • 2 large whole wheat tortillas
  • 6 oz refried beans
  • 1/3 c kale, minced
  • 3 oz monterey jack, shredded
  • 2 oz extra sharp cheddar, shredded
  • 2.5 tsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • dash asafoetida
  • salsa/sour cream to taste

P1100876So I’ve been hanging out for the last week with my good friend Rhinovirus, who brought along his girlfriend Anosmia. By the time I could yank my snotty face up out of bed, there was nothing left to smell. I probably don’t need to reiterate what a bad idea cooking without smelling is; probably more for whomever is cooked for, but fortunately I was pliable enough in illness to allow more prepackaged food into my kitchen than I might want to for the next six months.

Tonight I’m stepping gingerly back onto the stovefront with something so simple not even an anosmic monkey could fail.

P1100860Start by slicing your garlic very thinly and letting it simmer in 2 tsp on ML for 15m or so while you mince that kale. After mincing, sprinkle with  and cayenne then rub 1/2 tsp olive oil into your palms and grab the whole bunch. Massage then transfer to a ziplock bag for more massaging. Set aside for at least 15m, but for an hour or more if’n you got it.

P1100860tShred and mix cheeses. Mix refried beans into olive oil/garlic mix and let everything congeal together on L for at least 20m, but for an hour or more if’m you got it. When kale-sadilla time happens at last, lightly oil a pan heated to the M side of ML. While the heating is going on, spread some beans on a tortilla and sprinkle on a bit of kale for good measure since it will stick with a purpose to the beans and not get all over the counter or stove. Put the open tortilla in the pan, sprinkle in cheese and fold it closed. Flip it every 15-30 seconds until cheese begins to show, melted, around its edges. Serve with sour cream and salsa if’n you desire. This turns out to be a great way to sneak kale into a meal without knowing you’re chomping the superfood!  4 spoons, says my wife, who has all of her nasal faculties intact.

The First 5+

In my pantry today:

  • 1.25 c frozen spinach
  • 1.25c blanched, chopped kale
  • 12 0z canned tomato sauce (plain)
  • 1 L yellow onion
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • 1 tbsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 2 tsp garlic paste
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp fenugreek
  • 1 tsp fennel
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp chile de arbol powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • dash asafoetia

P1100258I had some major cupboard rearranging to do so I started the onions in oil with mustard seeds on ML and let them rest largely unattended for about 30m. Sprinkle on turmeric a few minutes in, mix. Turn stove to M an mix in pastes and other spices until a gummy mound forms; dispatch the mound with your spatula and a small dollop of tomato sauce. Add greens and let the food processor run for a couple of minutes; spoon it back into the pan and stir in the remainder of your tomato sauce. Heat and eat, or add paneer, meat or a meat substitute — I threw in some cooked chana dal (split chickpeas) and served it over Basmati rice. I ate this for lunch and again for dinner… and maybe I heated my dinner in a small Ikea skillet then ate it then licked the skillet. Don’t you judge me.

kaleI know that eating foods of color is the way to go, so I feel really good about not only the outstanding 5+ spoons of taste this delivers but also because the recipe is full of enough greens for me to want to add a +. Following the Wahls Diet is my goal, but still isn’t entirely possible — both financially (SNAP only delivers so much) and… because I am still a product of my fatty culture and will submit to its baser dietary desires.*

 

 

* Don’t you judge me.

The Poor Man’s Saag Masoor

In my pantry today:

  • 3/4 c cooked lentils
  • 1 14.5 oz can kale greens
  • 1 14.5 oz can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 sweet yellow onion, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp vegetable ghee
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/3 c unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 tsp corn starch
  • 1/2 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin

saagmasoorOk, so if you’ve read even 10% of my posts then you already know the fundamental aspects of how this dish was made… and I’m feeling especially lazy today so we’re all gonna trust each other. Important asides to note? Don’t drain your cans. Put the coriander/cumin in with your hot ghee/oil/onions/garlic and mix until pasty before adding the other stuff. This is a good way both to get your nutrients and to get rid of at least one can from the back of your cupboard. Cheap, easy and still 4 spoons!

 

Ramen Salad Soup ft. Hunnộy Chicken

ramensaladsoup

In my pantry today:

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • marinade (below)
  • soup (below)
  • 1 handful of ramen noodles
  • 1 c kale
  • 1/3 c shredded cabbage
  • 1/3 c shredded carrot
  • 3 drops sesame oil
  • 2 spritzes olive oil cooking spray
  • some water

Hunnộy Marinade:

  • 1/4 c soy sauce
  • 1/3 c red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1/4 tsp red hot chili powder
ramen

I am mindful that this recipe mixes some ingredients and methodologies common to very separate Asian countries.

Marinate your uncut (other than extraneous fat trimming — go to town with that part while remaining true to your own taste for extraneous fat) breasts in the above mixture in a sealed plastic bag or tupperware container and let it soak overnight, or all day or any arbitrary set of several consecutive hours you like. It’ll help things along tomorrow (or later) if you go ahead and prep the other stuff, too. Nearly mince your kale and massage a drop or two of sesame oil into it; let that sit untouched for no less than fifteen minutes, and no more than a couple days (kale is hearty). Slice a thin round or two from a split cabbage* and grate some carrots; put in a baggie and into the fridge. And, really, making the broth would cut down the chicken/noodle timing issue so go ahead and do that (at least a little in) advance of the other stuff.

Soup:

  • 3 14.5 oz cans chicken broth
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 2 drops sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp red hot chili powder

I mean, you don’t have to do all of this the day before (although the meat would most benefit). Whenever you do make the soup, season but don’t bring it to a full boil until it’s time to boil the noodles.

When it’s time to cook the chicken, preheat a pan to M/MH. When hot, spray with olive oil cooking spray and slide a shaken wedge of animal into the pan. Spoon a little of the marinade over each. Let cook (slide it around so it doesn’t stick) on that side for 2-5 minutes or until chicken shows a white-to-pink gradient when viewed from the side, flip and let the other side cook in the same fashion. Add little drops of water/marinade respectively to keep caramelization or sticking to happen. After gradient shows same range on this side, drop 1/4 c water into the pan, cover it and reduce heat to ML for 10 minutes. Now is the time to start your noodles: bring the soup to a low boil then split the ramen in half before throwing into the pot so that they fit into said pot; stir. Return to chicken (assuming the right amount of time has passed) and slice each breast as thinly as possible. Put slices back into pan and coat with the thick marinade leavings. When noodles are done, don’t drain but divide the pot contents between two large bowls. Layer on kale, cabbage, chicken and carrots. While this did end up being a little more work than for which I’ve trained myself, it delivered spicy cold weather deliciousness at 5 spoons.

 

 

cabbagepeas*All that cabbage I made the other day was divided in half, and respectively: frozen and with peas over Basmati rice at 4 spoons (that cabbage is GOOD after sitting in the fridge a day). The rest of this same head cabbage is chilling in freezer purgatory, and a smidge bit of it still lives in a tiny plastic home in the fridge. Cabbage: one if the cheapest vegetables may also be its heartiest.

Lasagna, ft. Sausage, Kale and Cheese Trifecta

In my pantry today:

  • The butt-ends of two boxes of lasagna noodles
  • 1 freezer bag crock pot marinara (approx 3 c)
  • 1 freezer bag cooked ground Italian sausage (approx 3/4 c)
  • 3 medium leaves kale
  • 1 c ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 c asiago cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 c mozzarella
  • 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese
  • 1 dash salt

lasagnaThaw then marry your marinara and sausage in a medium-sized pot on the stove. Also start a large, oiled pot of water with an accompanying dash of salt. When your water begins to show signs of a boil, hold each leaf of kale by its stem and dip into the water for a count of 12. Wrap them in a clean towel and gently squeeze out all the water. Move them to the cutting board, remove stems and mince; set aside. Your pasta can go in now and cook until it’s a little too al dente to be al dente, then drain it and rinse with cold water until everything is chilled to room temperature.

Shred asiago cheese, set aside with mozzarella. Mix egg with ricotta cheese and dash salt. Rub a little olive oil inside a 6×6″ baking pan and begin layering by laying the most whole of your noodles along the bottom of the pan. Pour on 1/4 your sauce, scatter in half your kale bits, sprinkle 1/3 the asiago on, drop in dollops of ricotta and spread gently across the breadth of the pan, then add as complete a layer as you can with the noodle amputations and do this all again. Add a final layer of noodles, then add the rest of your sauce and top with the rest of your asiago and all of your mozzarella and Parmesan. Bake foil-covered pan in 350° oven for 45m, then take foil off and cook another 10-20m until optimum browning has occurred. Though next time I’d use more kale and sausage, this was still pretty good and worth all 4 spoons!

 

Comfort Soup (Or, “Three Animals Walked Into a Crock Pot…”)

In my pantry today:

  • 1/2 c lentils
  • 5oz canned chicken breast
  • 2 medium potatoes
  • 1c celery, sliced
  • 1c carrots, sliced
  • 3c kale, finely minced
  • 1 tbsp sausage grease
  • 1 large onion, thin-ish slices
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 5c broth (I used vegetable despite the meaty base)
  • 1/2 c half and half
  • 1 tsp hot red chili powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp asafoetida

So it’s chilly, the wife is home sick and I’m not feeling too spunky, myself. It feels like soup time; not just any soup time, mind you — it’s comfort soup time. Start the onions and garlic out in the sausage grease… in the crock pot. Turn it on MH, stir and let sit for an hour or so. Turn off. Run those two godforsaken errands you don’t really want to have to drag your ass out of bed to do. Come back. Assemble!

Turn the crock pot back on to MH Stir in sliced carrots and celery. Cut potatoes into bite-size chunks and stir into the mess. And what the heck — drain that little can of chicken sitting in the cupboard and toss it in. Sprinkle on and stir in all the seasonings so that all of the soup bits are well-coated in the glory of flavor. Then enter your broth. After the first cup or two, stir in the lentils. Begin folding in little fistfuls of kale, alternating with the remainder of the broth. Bless the entire stew with half and half, cover, and let cook on M-MH until the potatoes are soft. All of the comfort of a hearty, stick-to-your-ribs soup with all of the vegetative nutrition of a salad bar — you’ll need all 5 spoons for this pot!

WaaahTons (or, “When in Doubt, Fry it”)

In my pantry today:

  • 20ish wonton wrappers
  • 1 c ground turkey
  • 1 c leftover asian slaw that never got written about
  • 1/2 c shredded jack/cheddar mix
  • 1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp minced red onion
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric

Because my partner works odd hours, timing a meal can prove difficult. Wontons do not tolerate this — or at least I have not found the magical process. Today will only be my third time trying, and this time I have vowed to make good on transparency. I have some minor motor skill problems, so delicate tasks like “removing individual wrapper from stack of wrappers” and “folding wrapper properly around filling” generally annoy the balls outta me because I do them poorly. But wontons are a thing now, and I must conquer their tiny bodies
with impunity.

Ok, so she’ll be home from work for the day around 3. The filling is made and chilling in a bowl. Lo, these wontons will also need a dipping sauce!
  • 1/2 c Grandma’s fig jam
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp garlic ginger paste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp hot red chili powder

The second wonton attempt ended in soggy despair, but the slaw was pretty tasty. It was saved in the fridge, hopefully, for this day.

And, hell, I’d written up the slaw-gredients days ago:

  • 2/3 head red cabbage, diced
  • 2 c kale, diced and marinated in sesame oil
  • 1/2 c edamame, shelled
  • 1/2 c sliced leek greens
  • 1/2 c crumbled ramen noodles
  • 1/3 c cashew pieces
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce

That was a labor of delicious love to which I should’ve here previously copped. The slaw would’ve gotten 4 spoons and these wontons… these wontons right here? And their sauce? 5 spoons and proud of it!