Thursday, October 9, 2008

Kale with Bacon

Growing up mostly in the south, you'd think I'd be well versed in greens. Truth is I never had even tried collards, turnip, or mustard greens until I was in my mid-twenties. My upbringing was not a southern one, especially when it came to food. The only cooked greens I ate as a kid were kale and I still get a hankering for them from time to time.

I love the recipe below because of the balance of flavors. The bitter earthiness of the kale is paired well the smoky bacon and balanced nicely with the acidity of the vinegar. You could also leave out the bacon and make this a completely vegetarian dish! This comes from the Joy of Cooking and really the only thing I've altered is the cooking time. I still like my greens with a bit of bite when it comes to texture so I cook them for less time then originally recommended.

Kale with Bacon (Adapted from the Joy of Cooking)
Makes 4 servings
1 large bunch of kale (washed)
1 small onion diced
2 slices bacon chopped (I used hickory smoked)
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp olive oil
splash of red wine vinegar (optional)
salt and pepper to taste

Strip kale leaves from stems and discard. Roughly chop kale into bite-size pieces. In a large pot cook bacon. Remove to paper towel to drain. Add olive oil and diced onion and cook over medium heat until translucent. Add minced garlic and kale to pot, stir to cook down kale so that all of it will fit. Add salt and pepper and stir well. Cover and continue cooking another 10-12 minutes. Add the splash of red wine vinegar and the crumbled bacon to the kale and toss. Check for seasoning and serve.

We had this with some gnocchi tossed with marinara, turkey spicy italian sausage, mushrooms and fresh parmesan and a green bean and carrot mixture.

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Melanie Busbee said...

Looks and sounds delish!

That's so funny though...because I grew up in the South too, but didn't try any greens really until I was 22ish. I was however, obsessed with spinach as a baby. But in my opinion, spinach is too common to be counted as a "green."

Triplet Mama said...

This sounds so yummy. I love kale and I always sneak it in to the kids foods. Kale AND bacon, wow, can't go wrong!

Jeni said...

Thanks ladies. It's my favorite way to make it thus far. The amount of bacon in it is so little that it doesn't add much fat for how much it adds to the dish.

miss v said...

i need to try kale!

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