Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Eat Me: Cannellini & Kale Ragout

I tweeted yesterday about my recent food rut. I'm normally someone who knows exactly what she's in the mood to eat, but lately nothing sounds very good. As a result I end up eating something that's not satisfying taste-wise or something really, REALLY bad for me, and get all angry because I'm cranky sans good food. Also, I like to eat something green with dinner, and that's harder during the winter months. My easy go-to veggies like green beans and asparagus are not in season, and while I LOVE brussel sprouts, I just can't eat them every single day. Enter: kale.

Kale is a fantastically nutrient-rich dark green, but unfortunately, it's not the easiest to prepare. I love asparagus & green beans because all I have to do is steam and/or roast, and there you have it. Delicious greenery. I don't particularly enjoy my kale baked (kale chips? no.) or simply steamed/sauteed, but I DO like it in brothy flavorful soups. My go-to recipe this winter for a healthy but satisfying meal is cannellini & kale ragout. And since I'm always tweeting about it, I figured I'd share the recipe with you fabulous people. Enjoy!

Cannellini and Kale Ragout
makes 4 servings (or 2, if you're me)

- 4 tablespoons evoo

- 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh thyme

- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

- 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper (or more, if you're me)

- 1 large bunch of organic kale

- vegetable broth (quantity is totally up to your liking, some like it more ragout-y and some more soup-y; my preference is somewhere in the middle)

- 1 14 1/2-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice (with some sort of seasoning, i usually get garlic & onion)

- 1 15-ounce can of cannellini (white kidney beans), drained

Heat 4 tablespoons of evoo in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add garlic and crushed red pepper and saute ove rmedium heat for about 30 seconds. Add kale and broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until kale wilts. Add tomatoes with juice, beans and 1 tablespoon of thyme. Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Now, this recipe is SUPER easy and SUPER healthy, and while I like the soup just fine on its own, the next few steps are, for moi, crucial. Pourquoi? Because to me, a meal isn't a meal without bread.

Oversize Croutons

- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

- 1 baguette

- 2 tablespoons of evoo

- butter (optional)

Slice baguette into 1.5 inch thick slices. Heat 2 tablespoons of evoo (and butter, if you're me) over medium heat. Add bread and thyme, cook until bread is golden on both sides, turning with tongs, about 2 minutes total. Transer croutons to bowl, sprinkle with salt and pepper.

FINAL STEP: Ladle ragout into shallow bowls and top with croutons. Pour glass of wine and enjoy! (btw i think the pic below has sausage, but it's the closest thing i could find - oops)


Naturally Jules said...

I love,love,love kale! I throw it in our chicken soup, I saute it with garlic and balsamic vinigar ~ Love It!

ps. my word verification is "pumshwat". I need to use this word often...I just don't know how.

City Girl said...

I love kale too! Definitely a go-to green for me, along with spinach and chard. Your recipe looks delicious!

Rachel said...

I love kale. It's AMAZING.

Sallie Ann said...

Love this, love kale. Did you read my blog post, What the Kale? (I'm kinda' funny, right) I make a really similar meal about 2-3x/week. I actually serve mine over garlic toast, or rice, or whatever. I've not got my mom hooked on kale. So good for you and easy! Yeah for kale!!!

Kiki said...

Kale stirfried with sliced chili and garlic and splashed with a bit of balsamic vinegar is a fantastic dish. When I need a green vegetable for with dinner, that is absolutely my go-to side because it takes 2 minutes or less.

Rock on, leafy greens!

kylie grethen said...

yeees sounds easy and delicious!! am totally making this soon!

Melita said...

that sounds so delish! i've been craving a dish like this for a while now. can't wait to try it. :)

Heidi said...

Gosh, Carolyn. Seems like you could at least credit the Epicurious site for copying the recipe