My journey to liking kale

I hate kale. I think it’s gross. It’s bitter, tough and depending on how I’ve eaten it, it’s slimy. That’s the 5 year old in me being resistant to healthy things. We all hate brussels sprouts, right? So let me tell you a story that began this journey. I was at a friend’s house and she served me a bowl of something green and leafy. She was eating it happily, so I partook as well. It was sweet and tender and not quite like any green I had tried (that I knew of). I asked her what it was. She told me it was kale. I immediately started thinking that I hated what was in my bowl. Ew, I was eating it… but moments ago said I liked it. This confused me. Kale doesn’t taste like this, I told her. She then told me what became the turning point in this journey. She massaged her kale. She did what? You heard me. Massaged it. This means chopping it up, coating it in oil/vinegar/lemon juice/salt/something and rubbing it for a while. Upon further inquiry I learned the vital piece that I had been missing in my attempts to cook this leafy green. Afterward, I promptly forgot this advice, and returned to hating kale. Until this year.

This year I made a promise to myself to eat as seasonally as humanly (me being the human) possible. Which in this Santa Cruz winter means lots of kale. I have since stumbled upon recipes involving kale that I absolutely love. Kale and apple salad. Pasta with sauteed garlic, onions, walnuts and kale. Kale/Chard and cheddar scones (in the oven as we speak). Rice gratin with kale and onions.

From Web MD “One cup of kale contains 36 calories, 5 grams of fiber, and 15% of the daily requirement of calcium and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), 40% of magnesium, 180% of vitamin A, 200% of vitamin C, and 1,020% of vitamin K. It is also a good source of minerals copper, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus.” Kale is amazingly healthy. I think it’s one of those “superfoods” that you’re supposed to make. Now, I refuse to put kale into a milkshake. But I will make tasty healthy meals with this delicious green.

Knowing that I can get over my strong dislike for kale, here’s what’s next on the “oh my gosh I can’t believe you’re a foodie and don’t like that” list: mushrooms, olives, brussles sprouts, artichoke hearts (weird psychological fear of the pokey things) and beets. I will tackle one at a time, but any advice (like the amazing “massage your kale” advice) to help, would be much appreciated.

In other news, we’ve been brewing all grain beer! Post on that later… 🙂

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