Have you ever tried kale?

You may have heard that kale is one of those super foods that will do wonders for you.

I have never tasted it.

As you may know I created a small raised vegetable patch. (check it out here) One of the vegies I put in was kale. But, oh dear, the caterpillars took a real liking to it. (check that disaster here)

Well it has been an ongoing battle and the caterpillars seem to be winning.

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The silver beet behind the kale is doing very well, completely caterpillar free, and we have had a number of meals from it.

So yesterday I decided to admit defeat and buy some kale…

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This is the curly kale, a different type to our smoother leafed variety in the garden.

Well! Have you tasted kale?

For the first meal, after checking through Google and my on line Taste Recipes, I decided to lightly steam it, as I do with the silver beet. Not good, it was rather tough and chewy. Quite an earthy sort of taste.

Next I found a recipe for a kale and herb pesto. Using the food processor to finely pulverize it and adding garlic, herbs and parmesan cheese then mixed with a dribble of oil and lemon juice. It was more of a success used as a topping for a hearty bean, tomatoe and quinoa casserole. (How healthy is all that!!!)

Tonight I tried making kale chips. I have read that they are the latest in food fashion. The verdict? Not bad, but Jack found the crumbly texture stuck in his throat and he had to gulp down some water. I thought I had maybe overdone the dash of soy sauce which made them rather salty.  

So I think I will stay with the silver beet, spinach, cabbage and broccoli for our greens, and not feel too bad about the caterpillars munching on the kale in the garden, at least they are leaving the other vegies alone…

Has any one out there had more success with kale? If so what is your secret?

This is just to add a little sunshine for my friends in the north…

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Categories: Australia, garden, Goldcoast, kale, photos, vegetable garden | Tags: , , , , | 69 Comments

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69 thoughts on “Have you ever tried kale?

  1. Hello. Great blog! I wish to ask whether I may use your photograph of ‘Under the Jacaranda Tree’. I would use it only once 15th May to 21 June 2015 at the Gladstone Regional Art Gallery and Museum. I have done 30 oil paintings of Queenslanders normal activities over the period 1880 to 1980. Full accreditation would be given to you on the photograph of course. I you wish to check out that I am legit plese google ‘Marie Green artist’ – I live up the road from you at Agnes Water. Well, I will sit here fingers crossed till I hear from you. 😀

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    • Hi Marie nice to hear from you. I am more than happy for you to use the Jacaranda painting. Have you ever seen the original in the Brisbane art gallery? it is one of my favourites. I have had a look at your web site and love your paintings.

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  2. We grow the curly Kale variety.. and LOVE it.. I also have it blending in a morning with some spinach and coconut milk into a green smoothy with celery and apple and banana… Yummy!… Not to mention steamed as a side veg on my dinner..
    Its also good eaten raw like lettuce when the younger leaves are not grown too tough…
    The only thing with Kale is that the White fly loves it too.. so if you have that problem, use a fine net over them or they get covered..

    Love and Blessings Sue xox

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    • That smoothy sounds delicious Sue. The caterpillars have given up and at last I am getting a few leaves to try. The fresh ones are way better than the super market ones. Will watch for the white fly.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Kale is similar to the most widely eaten Zambian vegetable called ‘rape’. We just boil it for a few minutes with tomato, onion and cooking oil for eating with some protein and nshima (a thick porridge made of corn meal). However, this recipe would not work for eating with rice or potatoes.
    I hope you will manage to find a recipe that you will like.

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    • Thank you for the information your way of cooking it sounds delicious. I have found a few recipes I like but I’ve come to the conclusion that the kale in the grocer shop is maybe getting a bit old and it does tend to get bitter if it is more than 3-4 days old so will only buy at the farmers market or use some of my own home grown, if the caterpillars leave me any…

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I have tried it! Many times, in fact. Kale is the main ingredient in a traditional dish from North Germany. It’s cooked like cabbage but with bacon, smoked meat and sausages in the same pot and served with potatoes. One could say that this dish bestows super powers as it contains enough calories to keep you going for a few days. But it sure is not healthy at all!

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    • G’day, nice to meet you, thank you for leaving a comment I appreciate it. Interesting dish you have mentioned but I don’t think I will try this one as we are vegetarians!!!

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  5. I too have had mixed results w kale PP, and don’t even attempt it at home. Good news tho, I just read an article that kale is now “out” but I forget what’s the new “in”!! I do love kale chips tho😊

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    • I read the new in thing is sprouts. I think they, the veggie marketers, try to brain wash people about veggies that are not popular to sell more. I actually love sprouts but I know many people don’t. I also read they have produced a new vegetable, a cross between a sprout and kale…Not seen it out here yet…

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  6. oh amiga, it’s frustrating to read a great post (and you write many great posts!) and not be able to get a comment to go through! suffice to know that i loved this one and all – and you’ve received some wonderful feedback on this one! yay!

    i’m still unsure about how and where you set your rss… need to go for breakfast and get to the airport to meet the tour group.. will figure this out soon i hope!

    love
    lisa/z

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    • I feel for your frustration with your internet connections Lisa, and thank you for the comments you do manage to get through. The RSS symbol is a small orange square with 3 semi circular lines in it, click on that and it will open a window asking if you want to subscribe to the blog. Good luck my blogging buddy…

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  7. RMW

    I don’t have a garden but I buy all my produce at the local farmers market which is on Tuesdays in my part of town. There are different varieties of kale so I buy different kinds…. just eat them raw in a salad with lots of other greens and I love it!

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    • It is good to hear from you, thanks for leaving a comment. I love farmers markets, we have a very good one near us on a Saturday. The produce is so much better that the supermarkets.

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  8. I’ve never tried kale. I love green vegetables, but I’m not a huge fan of leafy greens. Maybe someone will sneak some in on me one day, and I’ll find I like it.

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    • There seems to be quite a lot of people that have not tried kale Maddie. Having now tried it I must admit I would not place it in my top 10 favourites…

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Where do these food fashions come from?? I’ll stick to ornamental kale.

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    • I guess it is the same as dress fashions, change fuels the media. I believe the latest vegie being promoted is the humble sprout. Now that is one I do love… Ornamental kale is a great idea.

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  10. I love kale 🙂

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  11. Oh my gosh! That flower is fabulous! Now the kale. I have tried to make chips. They look like something at the bottom of my fireplace. But I read in the paper the other day that Trader Joe’s and probably other places are carrying a hybrid of brussels sprouts and kale. I’m going to check those out for taste. Good luck. ✌️🍀😉

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  12. I do love my greens, but Kale bought is way too tough, and I don’t grow my own….but I now buy Cavolo Nero and remove the stems, finely slice it and steam it….very nice

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    • I had never heard of this before so, of course, I Googled it, this is what I found. A loose-leafed cabbage from Tuscany, Italy. The leaves are a very dark green, almost black, hence its name, which translates as ‘black cabbage’. It has a pleasantly tangy, bitter flavour, with a sweet aftertaste. Some people spell this ‘cavalo nero’. Not seen it over here Sue.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. thanks for the sunshine with that gorgeous sunflower. and actually, I was licking my chops at the first photo – crazy – but true – cos I love fresh greens and the kale (even if getting eaten up) still looks good – and so does the brighter green in the beet leaves. mmmm = looking forward to gardening again this summer.
    I have tried kale chips from the bag – but they are really expensive and seem still processed – and so I look forward to making some homemade kale chips later on.
    ~~~

    and with kale recipes – my husband makes a batch of it with diced red onion, apple cider vinegar, olive oil and a bit of salt/pepper. It is really good – a little pungent with the ACV – but tangy too – and it is better cooked fully.

    I also add it to eggs. lightly sauté kale with a good oil – maybe add garlic (or not) – or add spinach, chicken pieces, peppers, etc. – and then once it is half way cooked – I add in some eggs. very tasty.
    but for plain days – I scramble it all at once – a few eggs, kale, and maybe some other things and just cook it that way – the kale is cooked less but it is good.

    lastly, I also add kale to batches of one dish meals. You know, like a tortilla soup batch or almost any kind of crock pot dish – once it cooks down it adds dense nutrients and becomes mild or not even noticeable….

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    • Thank you for all these great ideas Y. Lucky you to have a hubby who does some cooking for you. Jack is quite good and has his signature dishes. I am getting a lot of good ideas from the community so I will put another post together with all the ideas. Watch this spot…. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • well he does not cook often – and he only made this kale twice- ha! and my hubs really only has a few specialties – but I think in retirement he will do most of the cooking – he enjoys it whereas I don’t – ha! 🙂

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        • and here is one thing I made late summer- early fall – I call it garden delight –

          everything on top of the bread is from the garden (including a little kale) and was merely sautéed in butter and a little parm cheese. on the sourdough bread we added some salsa verde – and then loaded the goodies on top – mmm

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        • You certainly want to encourage him, it is so good to have the occasional night off cooking. We have the rule that one cooks the other washes the dishes (we do not have a dish washer machine)

          Liked by 1 person

          • that’s a nice balance 🙂 – and sometimes I think there is a difference between cooking, baking – and then just creating little meals to eat – do you know what I mean? and well, I love the quick prep stuff – whereas my stepdaughter can make these long prep meals and enjoys it …

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  14. Kale is great in green smoothies Pauline! You just throw it into the blender with fruit for example peaches or watermelon and really anything that takes your fancy such as mint. Blitz it all and then you get all the benefits of the kale juices without the heavy texture of chewing through all the leaves (which is not very digestible for most people). I’ve tried eating it and now I prefer the smoothie option 🙂

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  15. This kale recipe link from the Mother Earth News popped up on my facebook page today and thought I’d send it along. I haven’t tried it, but it looks intriguing: http://goo.gl/kHYagy.

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    • Thank you for that recipe PD it sounds very interesting. I still have 4 stalks left so I am going to try that salt rubbing recipe and will get back about the result.

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    • I have just tried that kale salad recipe for lunch. The mashing of the leaves with fingers was slow and a bit tedious but it did soften the texture and bring out the flavour. Very tasty I only put 3 tsp of honey into dressing, thought it was a bit sweet so next time I will up the lemon juice and less honey.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Wonderful. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

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        • It was tasty but a bit fiddly to make…

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          • Yes, the rubbing with salt seemed labor intensive. But I hope it helped open your horizons to kale, which really is delicious (and versatile!). You know, those caterpillars are wiser than they look.

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            • Ha ha yes the butterflies certainly knew where to leave their babies… I have been given quite a few different ideas in my post. I’m going to pick a few of the small kale leaves from the garden tonight and put them in an omelette

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  16. Have to admit PP that I have not grown, bought or even tasted kale. I’m not a cabbage or silver beet lover in the first place and it just seems like a relative to be avoided lol 🙂
    Cathy

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  17. Thank you for the sunshine 🙂 No- I haven’t tried it, so not much help here, Pauline.

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  18. We love our partch of curly kale! I wouldn’t buy it from the shops though – way to old even before its picked – big leaves are not the best. I do all the above mentioned things with tasty success but the real surprise winner is to put it on pizza just under the top cheese layer. It sort of gors like the chips but less crumbly, more awesome crispy/crunchy 🙂

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    • Thanks for the tip about the pizza that sounds like a good recipe to try with my own kale. Yes I thought it may be one of those vegies you have to have freshly picked and young.

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  19. I slice kale and eat it raw in a salad with sliced up brocioli, brussel sprouts, carrots, sunflower seeds and dressing. It is yummy! This happens to me all the time. I leave on a trip right when the veggies start producing.

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    • Do you have your own home grown kale Cindy? I think fresh could be best with this vegie. I love brussel sprouts but have not tried them raw.

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  20. I like kale well enough, but it’s not something that I keep stocked in my fridge. Actually, I haven’t purchased any in probably 2 or 3 years. I’m much happier with other greens – especially collards. I tried growing kale last year in the garden, but it did poor. The bugs enjoyed the kale though!

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    • G’day Emily, nice to meet you. I think you sound as though you have the same experience as me with the kale… Still I figure if the bugs are eating the kale they are leaving every thing else alone…

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  21. Thanks for all the kale info, but specially for that **gawjus** sunny flower.
    Much needed these days! xx del

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  22. I have eaten it – the curly kale – I chop off the thicker stems, but find that it cooking it is like cooking cabbage. A few minutes simmered on the hob or stir-fried. I love anything green 😀

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  23. Well, your caterpillars should be really healthy after munching on your kale. 🙂 I’m sure I must have eaten kale in my lifetime, but can’t recollect ever buying or cooking it.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. I agree with the other commenters. I suspect you will find that your tender, fresh-from-the-garden kale is much better than the old tough stuff you got from the market. The young leaves are wonderful in salads and we like to saute kale (without the stems if they are too large and tough) in olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes and a bit of anchovy. Then add a little chicken or veggie stock at the end and cook it off. Delicious.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. really?? you planted that kale in my garden and never got to eat it? I have a freezer full of it. I do a stir fry and add the chopped kale at the end and just let it wilt for a minute or so. I don’t find it tastes much different from silver beet, but then with the amount of chilli I add to my food…..
    I’m sick of this “superfood” palaver, any fresh veg that is grown organically, especially home grown veg, is a superfood, it’s just marketing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nope never got to eat it Naomi it was still too small when I left. I agree about the fresh, home grown food, maybe the shop kale was a bit old and stale.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. Surprisingly, a kale salad is not as tough. My son made one, simply with kale and a homemade dressing. Delicious!
    I also have sauteed it with bacon and some chicken broth. It takes awhile to soften it.
    Will have to try the pesto! 🙂

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    • Thank you for the tips. Maybe I didn’t cook it for long enough. I will try my kale from the garden in a salad, I will pick the leaves that the caterpillars leave, while they are still small

      Liked by 1 person

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