How I Learned to Love Kale (and a Recipe)

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Until a year ago, I don’t think I ever tasted kale, which was fine with me because the thought of eating it grossed me out. That changed after my husband’s health prompted us to adopt a plant-based diet, a diet where we were supposed to give up meat and dairy and dramatically increase our consumption of veggies, especially dark leafy green ones like kale.

For the first few months of our new diet, I got away without making kale. I liked spinach, so that was my go-to dark leafy green. But I knew it was important to eat a variety of greens, so one day I broke down and bought some kale. The kale dish I made, however; didn’t turn out well and I thought I was through with the stuff.

A month or so after this, however; my husband ordered the Sesame Kale Macro Bowl at Native Foods. He loved the dish so much that he talked me into tasting it. To my surprise, I loved it too! Encouraged by this, I took another stab at cooking kale, but it was another failure.

I later learned at a cooking class I took at Life Alive, that my problem with kale was that I wasn’t stripping it. Once I learned this secret, my kale dishes turned out great. Click here for a video on how to strip kale.

In fact I made the tastiest Kale Stew for dinner tonight from a recipe I found on The Perks of Having Cancer! The only thing I did to alter the recipe was to omit the oil. On the diet I follow, I don’t use extracted oil. If you’re curious about why, see step 6 in 7 Simple Steps to Superior Health.

You may be thinking to yourself, how do you saute vegetables without oil? That’s a great question, one I asked myself when I first started this diet. The answer is, you can saute vegetables in water, stock or wine just fine. Not convinced? Click here.

So that’s my story and I’m sticking to it (eating kale – that is!).

Photo courtesy of Muranaka Farm.

About celestedimilla

Hey there. I’m Celeste, California girl, writer, psychotherapist and burgeoning plant-based foodie.
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17 Responses to How I Learned to Love Kale (and a Recipe)

  1. wardieward says:

    Organic Kale is our favourite green leafy vegetable for our daily green smoothies. I NEVER used to eat Kale, now we use 2 big bunches a week just in our drinks. Even the 17 year old likes, no actually demands, a smoothy a day. We try to limit the amount of fruit we use, because, well, you know the sugar intake needs to be kept under control. The Vitamix has been the best and most used piece of kitchen equipment I have invested in. Thanks for mentioning kale- the unsung hero of the green leaves.

    • Hi Wardie! I tried kale in a smoothie once, but I didn’t like it. Like the other people who commented here – the kale taste overpowered the smoothie for me. I wish I liked it – it would be a great way to consume all those vital nutrients. I do like smoothies with Swiss chard and parsley, however. Parsley, pineapple and banana smoothies are one of my favorites. Thanks so much for your comment – I appreciate it:)

  2. healthiestbeauty says:

    Reblogged this on The healthiest beauty.

  3. I like kale, but not in smoothies too much. I find it too strong! But I made a delicious spinach and kale salad the other day!

  4. Flo says:

    I find kale a bit strong for smoothies, but I love it in soups and stews!

    • Hi Flo! Soups and stews are my favorite way to eat kale. Even my young nieces and nephews will eat kale this way – well, some of them will anyway:) I don’t know that I would have eaten kale soup when I was a kiddo. Of course, my mom never made it so it doesn’t really matter. I bet if I was raised in a plant-based household I would have eaten it and liked it:)

  5. Anna says:

    Directions

    ” In large serving bowl, add the kale, half of lemon juice, a drizzle of oil and a little kosher salt. Massage until the kale starts to soften and wilt, 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside while you make the dressing.”

    Hi Celeste,
    l did not like the hard bite of kale, till someone told me I need to massage this green thing.
    Smoothies sounded a little adventures for me.

    • I’ve heard that you’re supposed to massage kale when you’re eating it raw. So far, I’ve mostly used kale in soups. When the weather gets warmer, I’ll probably attempt some raw kale recipes and I’ll be sure to massage it! I have a recipe somewhere for a massaged kale and avocado salad I’ve been wanting to try. Thanks so much for your comment – I appreciate it:)

  6. PM says:

    I go bananas over cheezy kale chips and Veggie Grill’s All Hale Kale Salad with blackened tempeh. Zero bite. Tons of flavor. If you haven’t tried it yet, get thee to a Veggie Grill pronto! 🙂

    • A Veggie Grill just opened up near my house (I was so excited about it!). I’ve only been once so far, and I did try the kale chips – yum! I didn’t get the All Hale Kale Salad (I love that name!), but I’ll try it the next time I go. By the way, my husband and I were planning on going to Tal Ronnen’s Crossroads yesterday, but we didn’t. After my husband looked it up, he refused to go (he said it’s to expensive). Maybe I can talk him into going one of these days. I hope your family visit went well:)

      • PM says:

        How did I miss that they have kale chips at VG?LOL. Guess I’m too obsessed with the salad and pudding to notice anything else. I got mine at Ralph’s, but Trader Joe’s carries them now, too. At some point, I’d like a dehydrator to make my own. I’ve made them in the oven, but I think a dehydrator would be better.

        I haven’t yet made it to Crossroads for the same reason — expense, but hope to come up with a “special occasion” excuse to splurge at some point.

        I actually leave this coming Saturday to see the family. I’m so looking forward to it. 🙂

      • Hey cowgirl! I just listened to Colleen Patrick-Goudreau’s podcast ‘The Myth of the “Perfect Vegan.” It was awesome! Thank you so much for telling me about her. Oh, and my bad! I had the kale chips at Peace Pies, not The Veggie Grill – I got a little mixed up there:) Have fun on your family trip. Celeste:)

  7. mllaurie says:

    I always thought kale was something they put on plates in restaurants to make them pretty. I’m sure someone told me it wasn’t edible. 🙂 I love kale, but struggle to get hold of it here. Not sure why, as I can get lots of exotic fruit & veg, but not kale. Maybe I’ll grow it. 🙂

    • When I was a waitress a long time ago, we used kale to decorate our salad bar. We reused the same kale over and over each day and I was horrified one day when I saw an old man eating it. I think more people think of it as an adornment than food, which is too bad. I’m surprised that you can’t find kale were you are – what a bummer! Growing it would be awesome, however! Celeste:)

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