Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Braised Kale with White Navy Beans

Hi Everyone, Its me again!

This recipe is great because its tasty, comforting, easy but best of all its SUPER healthy! Oh! and its a vegetarian dish.

  • 1 slice of bacon or pancetta, diced (Optional)
  • 1/2 cup of canned white navy beans or similar - drained and rinsed with cold water.
  • 1 or 2 cloves of minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 bunch kale, stemmed and torn
  • 3/4 cup chicken stock ( you may want to use a little more)
-(Optional)Saute the bacon/pancetta in a deep pan or Dutch oven over medium heat until rendered, about 5 minutes.
-Add the olive oil and when the oil is hot, add onion and cook until translucent, 6 to 7 minutes.
-Add the garlic and saute until fragrant.
-Add the greens, and saute until wilted, about 4 minutes.
-Add the chicken stock and beans, cover and gently braise over low heat until tender, about 40-45 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve with anything from seafood, fish, chicken or even on its own with some fresh crusty bread.

Health Benefits:

Kale is rich and abundant in calcium, lutein, iron, and Vitamins A, C, and K.  
Kale has seven times the beta-carotene of broccoli and ten times more lutein. Kale is rich in Vitamin C not to mention the much needed fiber so lacking in the daily diet of processed food eating Canadians. The "Icing on the Kale" (haw-haw) are the natural occurring phytochemicals -  sulforaphane and indoles which research suggests may protect against cancer. Let's not forget the all important antioxidant Vitamin E. Convinced yet?

Today I went into our kitchen at work and told some friends that I had made this Braised Kale with white beans and most of them looked at me and said "Braised what?!"Its too bad that most people aren't familiar with these super healthy leafy greens. My grandmother made leafy greens a lot so I was lucky to be exposed to them from a young age..Try this recipe with Escarole or even Swiss Chard (Beta Cadre).  Give it a try and you'll be surprised how great and comforting this veggie can be :) I served mine last night with grilled chicken breast and my warm "Italianized Naan Bread" (recipe coming up)..soooo good.

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