- Massage your kale! No not like a Swedish or Thai massage, but when you are washing and tearing up the kale into bite sized pieces rub the leaves with your fingers. The more you massage the kale leaves the more you are able to break down that insanely firm cell structure, and that helps take away some of that bitterness. It also makes it easier to chew in that fabulous salad you are creating.
- Heat up that kale! The genius of this very durable green is that you can steam it, bake it, cook it, and it will retain a lot of its nutritional value. This is wonderful as warm kale is easy to eat, tastes delicious and opens up several new kale eating possibilities (hello kale chips). http://www.livestrong.com/article/540695-does-baked-kale-have-nutrients-left/
Recently my catering company was onset at a magazine stills shoot, and served some warm kale wraps that were the talk of the town! I cannot take too much credit as the raw ingredients themselves were from the local Farmer's Market, and I feel like there isn't a way to make those delicious veggies taste bad, lol! But since they were devoured so quickly, I thought to myself "Hey self, lets share this recipe and see what folks think about it." So here we find ourselves, me typing, and you hopefully reading this....
Yummy Peanut Kale Wraps
**can be gluten free if you use lard chard leaves for wrap
4 to 6 large lavash wraps
1 can of chickpeas
1/2 of a medium red onion (finely chopped)
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
2 large bunches of kale
Other options to throw in the wrap:
1 large (preferably heirloom) tomato (finely chopped)
2-3 stalks of celery (finely chopped)
Sauce (adapted from lunchbox.com):
3 tablespoons chunky peanut butter
1/2 warm water
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 teaspoon coconut oil
1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger
2-3 cloves of garlic (pressed)
3 teaspoons tamari
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons agave
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
Are you ready for operation awesomeness? I thought so, now pour the 2 cups of water and the cup of quinoa into a pot on high heat. Stir it around for a little bit to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pot. Once it starts to boil turn heat down to low, and stir occasionally. Once the quinoa has absorbed all the water and is finished cooking set to the side.
On to the next step, put all those sauce ingredients in your blender, and blend them all up until you have a lovely looking well blended sauce. Set this aside as well.
Get your kale ready by washing it and tearing it to small bite sized pieces, and massaging it as you go. I like to tear off two pieces, rub them together, and then repeat. Once all your kale is all ready place it in a large bowl, and pour your sauce over the kale. Massage the sauce into kale with your hands until every leaf is covered. Then put the kale into a large baking pan, and place in the oven for 7-10 minutes. Just enough to warm the kale and cook the sauce into the leaves.
While that is cooking take your cooked quinoa and add in the chickpeas (rinsed), red onion, and anything else you want in your yummy wrap. Once the kale is warm take your lavash wrap and spoon your quinoa mixture out onto the wrap, and then spoon out your kale onto the wrap. Be sure you don't over fill your wrap, as you will need to now roll everything up. And then tah-dah, you have a beyond delicious lunch time meal for you and your loved ones. Ah kale, you are a yummy treat.