Published on May 6th, 2014 | by TLV News0
KALE YEAH—Yokel Food: Locally Grown Recipes and Wisdom from Yokna Bottoms Farm
-by Betsy Chapman-
Kale, it seems, is having a moment…I know this because I watched every week as it disappeared from our farmers market stand as quickly as we put it out, spirited away in reusable shopping bags by ecstatic lovers of this deep green superfood.
Of humble origins (favorite during the Middle Ages) and, until recently, resigned as an inedible salad bar “decoration,” this currently “hot” member of the brassica species enjoyed a resurgence of popularity during WWII, when rationing had folks scrambling to make up for missing nutrients.
Kale is a veritable powerhouse of everything good for you: beta carotene, vitamin K, vitamin C, calcium, lutein, and is purported to be loaded with cancer-fighting, cholesterol-reducing agents. Basically it’s the leafy green Marvel Comic superhero of the vegetable world…Kale Woman vs. Big Mac Man: Fighting Fat One Kale Chip at a Time.
And this digression leads us straight into how one might prepare kale. Kale is quite popular in chip form, providing a lower fat, more nutritious alternative to the pedestrian potato chip. Kale chips are a good way to introduce skeptical children to the joys of green vegetables and an easy, fun recipe that kids can help prepare.
Kale is often used for juicing and in green smoothies but I prefer adding it to soups, stir-fries, and frittatas, or just cooking it like I would turnip or collard greens. I throw it in my minestrone or Tuscan white bean soup; do a quick saute with ginger, garlic, and sesame oil and serve with Sriracha and jasmine rice; or cook up a big pot of kale and cabbage seasoned with onions, salt, and pepper and serve with chow chow, hot sauce, and cornbread.
Yokna Bottoms grows several different types: Red Russian, White Russian, Siberian, Curly, and Dino, considered the best type for kale chips because of its hearty, firm textured leaves and earthy, nutty flavor. We’ll have them all spring at Oxford City Market Tuesdays from 3–6:30 pm and Mid-Town Market Saturdays 7–11 am.
So, do like your mama said: Eat your greens, y’all!
Yokna Bottoms Farm is a Certified Naturally Grown CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) farm located in Lafayette County on the Yocona River bottomland. For more information about the farm, call Betsy at 662-380-2367.
(Click recipe below for larger, printable file)