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Hot Kale, Sausage, and Mushroom Dip


This hearty recipe from TV chef Nikki Elkins contains a creamy Mornay sauce, which is made of milk, flour, and shredded or grated cheese. Pair the dip with tortilla chips or a toasted baguette for the perfect party snack.

  • Yield: Makes 6 cups

Photography: Rob Tannenbaum

Source: The Martha Stewart Show, February 2012


  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for baking dish
  • Coarse salt
  • 2 small bunches curly kale (about 1 pound), stemmed and torn
  • 1/2 pound spicy Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 ounces button or cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon sherry-wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cups finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups finely grated Gruyere cheese
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Tortilla chips or toasted baguette slices, for serving


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees; butter a 1 1/2-quart baking dish and set aside.

  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat; generously salt water and return to a boil. Add kale and cook until tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold running water to cool. Squeeze water from kale until completely dry. Finely chop; you should have about 2 1/2 cups chopped kale. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside.

  3. Place sausage in a large skillet and cook, stirring, until brown; drain fat from skillet and transfer sausage to a bowl with kale.

  4. Melt 1 tablespoon butter and oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until lightly brown and tender, about 5 minutes. Add vinegar to deglaze and transfer mushrooms to bowl with kale and sausage.

  5. In a medium saucepan, melt remaining 4 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add flour and cook, whisking, until thick and bubbly, about 3 minutes. Whisk in milk and cream. Increase heat to medium-high; cook until mixture just begins to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, whisking often, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup Parmesan and 1 cup Gruyere; stir in lemon zest, 2 teaspoons salt, and pepper. Transfer cheese mixture to bowl with kale mixture and mix until fully combined.

  6. Transfer kale mixture to prepared baking dish; top with remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan and Gruyere. Bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

  7. Preheat broiler. Transfer baking dish to broiler; broil until browned and bubbly, 1 to 2 minutes. Serve dip with tortilla chips or toasted baguette.

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