So, as some of you may know... I'm a virgo, and a Galloway (yes, that's a double whammy). What this basically means is that I'm a perfectionist. A painfully anal perfectionist. There, said it. Understand that this is both a blessing and a curse. Right, now that that's clear there are a few things that have been bugging me lately about this here blog. I think all us bloggers feel it to a certain extent (unless you are one of those professional photographers who have recently started up a food blog. For you, all I can say is you lucky shits). It's that somewhat embarrassed feeling you get when you see one of your (really, really) old posts show up somewhere in internet-land and while the recipe and post is something you are still proud to have your name attached to, the photo's, well, um suck. I know photo's aren't the be all and end all, but I do know that some of my older recipes/posts deserve more than what they got all those years ago.
So, I've decided that while I have the time (I don't know how much longer this will be you see) I'm going to go back and re-shoot a bunch of the worst offenders, giving them new life on this little blog. I don't have a plan of how I'm gonna do it just yet. Some I may just do sneakily, adding in the new photos to the old posts (I'll give them a shout out on facebook, twitter, pinterest or something). But others, like this one here, may get a full-blown new post just for them. The lucky things.
It wasn't until the other day as I was making kale chips for the kids (after the first time I made them a couple of years ago they quickly became one of their all-time favourite snacks) that this great idea occurred to me. So I'll just see how I go, I'm not exaclty going to re-do every old recipe on here with dodgy photos. I'm being realistic. But I'll do my best to give justice to those recipes I feel deserve it.
So kale chips. Really nothing new, but still so good. I often get stopped at the markets on a Saturday morning, kale bunch in hand, by an inquisitive fellow market goer. "What do you do with that stuff?" is the question they always ask. Little do they know they've pulled aside the right person, I love the stuff and always have. I've never actually built up the courage to tell them that I also write a blog where they can find lots of wonderful kale recipes and instead usually set about explaining all the ways in which we enjoy these highly nutritive greens. From now on though if I ever get asked I'm going to get some balls and give them my card, hopefully they'll make it to this post...
Dear market friend,
I've most probably explained in great detail all of these ideas already, but just in the off chance you don't remember all my ramblings from that Saturday morning I've compiled a list of all the actual recipes for you here.
Great things to do with kale:
-Make these chips, you won't regret it.
-Make this raw kale salad with garlic feta dressing (excuse the ick photos!)
-Make Heidi's miso-curry butternut squash with tofu + cavolo nero
-Make some of this vegan kale + pumpkin seed pesto
-If you're brave, add kale to your green smoothies instead of silverbeet (chard)/spinach
-... or to your green juice
Lotsa love and kale
salt and vinegar kale chips
Any kind of kale can be used here, curly Scot's kale or cavolo nero (also known as Tuscan kale or laciniato). Any vinegar can be used in place of the cider vinegar. A little lemon or lime juice and a crack of black pepper are also be nice adaptions. Or go a slightly Asian route and use gluten-free soy sauce or tamari in place of salt and a little teeny drizzle of toasted sesame oil along with the olive oil.
Serves 1-2 hungry kids
1 bunch kale (approx 10 large handfuls of trimmed leaves)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (but any vinegar works)
sea salt to sprinkle
Pre-heat oven to 150 C/300 F.
Wash kale well, tear leaves away from the thick inner stem and discard stems. Give the leaves a whirl in a salad spinner to remove excess water (if you don't own a salad spinner simply lay the leaves out onto a clean tea towel, wrap up like you would a lolly and twist the ends to secure. Go outside and shake the hell out of it, until all the water stops spraying everywhere. Then use another tea towel to gently dry the last remaining water droplets off if need be).
Tear or slice kale leaves into bit sized "chips" and place into a large bowl, or two.
Whisk olive oil and cider vinegar together in a small bowl and pour evenly over the kale. Now comes the best bit (for little and big kids alike!)... get your hands into it and gently massage all that lovely dressing into every nook and cranny. Spread out a single layer of kale onto a oven tray (you may need to do this in two-three batches) sprinkle a little sea salt over the top and bake for 10-15 minutes, turning the leaves once during cooking if the outer ones are starting to brown too much. If you have a wire oven rack, place the kale onto this then you wont need to turn the leaves over during cooking. I also find they tend to crisp up much faster too (check after 8 minutes and go from there).
Remove from the oven and cool for half a second before digging in. Repeat until all the chips are cooked and eaten. Ours barely make it out of the kitchen.