Kale is the New Green

It seemed like 2014 was the year of the kale. We were bombarded with kale everything…kale chips, kale pizza, kale smoothies, kale baby food, even clothes had kale printed on them. Kale isn’t a new vegetable. However, with all the attention it has had, one would think it was a new invention.
I have to be honest, I didn’t jump on the kale bandwagon for a while. I had never tasted it and didn’t know how to prepare it. Besides, what was so good about kale that I can’t get out of my favorites: cauliflower, baby spinach, and asparagus?

raw kale
And then one day I tried kale chips (thanks to a coworker). Wow. My first thought was, “this can’t be a dark, green leafy vegetable.” It was delicious! Nothing that healthy could taste this good. But it did. To my surprise, it was fresh and light to the taste. Not bitter at all like I expected. I knew I hit the nutrition jackpot.
Kale is a super food because of its nutrient content. One cup of raw kale has:

  • 33 calories
  • 3 grams of protein
  • 2.5 grams of fiber
  • Vitamins A, C, and K
  • Folate, omega 3-fatty acids (not nearly as much as fish, but still)
  • Minerals such as phosphorus, potassium, calcium, and zinc

I’m happy to admit, kale has become a regular food in my household. I prepare it in stir-fry, soups, salads, and smoothies. It is a versatile vegetable that is easy to prepare.
The only thing I need now is a t-shirt that says “I love Kale.”
If you haven’t tried kale chips, try this recipe:

Crunchy Baked Kale Chips

Ingredients

1 bunch fresh kale (about 8 cups, chopped)
1 tablespoon canola or olive oil
1⁄2 teaspoon salt

Directions

  1. Wash kale leaves.
  2. Cut leaves off of thick stem and thoroughly dry leaves in a salad spinner or by blotting with paper towels. Discard stems.
  3. Tear or cut leaves into bite sized pieces. Place in large bowl.
  4. Drizzle oil over kale and toss to coat well.
  5. Place kale leaves onto baking sheet.
  6. Sprinkle with salt.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees until edges brown. About 10-15 minutes.
  8. Serve while hot.

Here are more easy kale recipes. Below is the nutrition facts for the Crunchy Baked Kale Chips.
kale chips nutrition facts
-Lisa

Source: foodhero.org


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Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP)

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Agricultural and Human Sciences Department

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