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  • Overview
  • Buy a Better Bunch
  • What's Your Type?
  • Go Raw
  • Drink Your Veggies
  • Get the Dish
  • Extra Kredit
  • Keep It Crisp
  • How to Prep Kale

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EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT

Kale

This health-food darling needs no introduction. Once relegated to garnish status, kale has taken center stage in salads, juices, composed dishes, and even shelf-stable snacks (kale chips, anyone?). And it's no wonder. High in iron, calcium, and vitamins A, C, and K -- not to mention fiber and protein -- it's a smart choice for your health and a tasty addition to your menu.

 

Kale's longtime dismissal can be traced to its large, sturdy leaves, which, like those of Swiss chard and collards, seem too tough to be eaten raw. The discovery that kale softens when "massaged" with dressing -- and stays appealingly un-limp for days after -- has made it a popular choice for make-ahead lunches and large-format restaurant dishes. Just as ubiquitous is kale's use in juices and smoothies, where it leaves little more than a greenish tint as evidence of the nutritious punch that it adds. Of course, like other members of the Brassica family (which includes cabbage, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, broccoli, turnips, and kohlrabi), it can be enjoyed as a side dish, or folded into soups, stews, pastas, and casseroles. And if you're serious about snacks, you'll munch on it between meals, crisped at low heat with a bit of olive oil and sea salt. More on that below.

This health-food darling needs no introduction. Once relegated to garnish status, kale has taken center stage in salads, juices, composed dishes, and even shelf-stable snacks (kale chips, anyone?). And it's no wonder. High in iron, calcium, and vitamins A, C, and K -- not to mention fiber and protein -- it's a smart choice for your health and a tasty addition to your menu.

 

Kale's longtime dismissal can be traced to its large, sturdy leaves...

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All About Kale

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recipe

Purple kale or curly kale can be substituted for the Tuscan variety (also called lacinato); chop the sturdy leaves instead of tearing them. Spelt is a good alternative to farro, with a similar taste and texture. We prefer French feta, which is typically milder and creamier, to other varieties. This recipe is one of our Better Basics: 10 New Takes on Family Favorites, see the others.