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Swirly butternut squash and kale soup

Swirly-butternut-squash-and-kale-soup_Yes,-more-please!

Butternut squash is my favorite squash. Autumn has arrived and I could not wait for the cold to make this soup. This nutty winter squash has the creamiest texture and tastes like a delicate pumpkin with mild citrus aroma. In my opinion Butternut squash makes the velvetiest soup in the world!…..

Now, you know how I feel about vegetable creams or pureed soups.
I do not want my squash soup to taste of chicken therefore vegetable stock is my preference. This vegan soup enhances all the pure flavors of the kale and the butternut squash by roasting them and letting those flavors stand out. I roasted the squash and steamed the kale with coconut milk to empower their own flavors.

I love the fusion of flavors in soups, but for me there is nothing better that the awareness of the fusion. What do I mean by that? Well these two ingredients are in harmony but they do not mix until you take a spoonful in your mouth then you taste the delicious swirl and contrast in colors, textures, flavors, and even in temperature. The kale and coconut milk add an herbal note without being overwhelming. The velvety roasted butternut squash adds sweetness and evokes the Autumn season.

This swirly butternut squash and kale soup is fun to make its easy and it looks appetizingly gorgeous. Whether its lunch with you alone, your friends, or a family get-together this soup is easy to portion and delicious…and it happens to be vegan! Enjoy!

Swirly-butternut-squash-and-kale-soup_ingredients

Swirly butternut squash and kale soup

Serves 4 bears or 2 mom and pop bears..

For the Butternut squash soup:

1 medium Butternut squash cut into cubes
½ medium size yellow or white onion
1-2 glugs of mild extra virgin olive oil
4-5 cups Vegetable stock
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½-1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (start with 1/2 teaspoon taste and add more if you like… I love it with 1 whole teaspoon!)
1 pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
Freshly black pepper to taste.

For the Kale swirl:

8 Curly-leaf kale leaves deveined.
¼ medium yellow or white onion
¾-1 cup coconut milk
½ teaspoon kosher salt

Toppings:

Roasted Walnuts roughly chopped
1-2 pinches Smoked paprika

Preparation Method:

Preheat oven at 450F
1. Peel and cut into small cubes the Butternut squash. Slice the onion.

Swirly-butternut-squash-and-kale-soup_peel-de-seed-cube
2. On a baking pan lined with aluminum foil or parchment paper, toss the Butternut squash, onions, salt pepper nutmeg and one glug of olive oil all in one layer. Roast in the oven at 425F for about 30-35 minutes, shake the pan every now and then, until the little cubes are fork tender, and toasty.
3. Remove pan from the oven, and in a medium size deep pot, add the roasted butternut squash, add the 4 cups of vegetable stock, salt, nutmeg, pepper, and puree with the help of an immersion blender, or use a regular blender.
4. Check for thickness and if needed add another cup of vegetable stock. This is up to your preference, however I like my soup with a lot of body, and therefore I usually use 4-5 cups. Feel free to add a little more if its too thick or to add some almond milk for an extra nutty flavor.
5. Let your soup warm up on a low low heat, and stir constantly.

Swirly-butternut-squash-and-kale-soup_roasted-butternut-squash

Swirly-butternut-squash-and-kale-soup_velvety-butternutsquash-soup
6. For the kale swirl: in a small pot place the leafy parts of the kale, discarding the main vein.
Add the coconut milk, roughly chopped piece of onion, garlic, salt and pepper.
7. Cover the pot over a slow simmer for about 7-10 minutes until the kale feels soft, and turns bright green. You can taste a little piece to check for doneness, you want it soft and cooked but not over cooked.
8. Remove from the stove and using an immersion blender to puree the kale mixture. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. The consistency should be creamy and light. It should look like a deep bright emerald green.

Swirly-butternut-squash-and-kale-soup_kale-swirl-soup
9. Roast the walnuts, sprinkle a little smoked paprika and salt.
10. Serve 2-3 ladles of the butternut squash on each bowl and then add the kale swirl. Sprinkle some roasted walnuts, and a pinch of smoked spanish paprika for best flavor. Enjoy!

Note: Remaining soup keeps well for 3-4 days and although it diminishes in flavor, extra portions can be frozen and stored for 30 days or so; this minimizes waste if you happen to make too much or have a desire for homemade soup next time you’re too busy to cook.

Swirly-butternut-squash-and-kale-soup_swirl!Swirly-butternut-squash-and-kale-soup_ready-to-serve_Yes,-more-please!

Enjoy!

Music Pairing: For this recipe our dear friend Ana Ferper plays

a beautifully classic guitar melodie by  J.S Bach Allemande Suite No.1

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Green Green Coleslaw

Green_Green-Cole-Slaw_ready-to-eat!_Yes,-more-please!

Texas summer heat is like Kryptonite. Do you remember how Superman used to get exposed to this green glowing Kryptonite and you could hear a sound like this: ~ waaayioh, waaayioh, waaayiho )) ) ) ) ) you could almost see the waves that debilitated the strongest blue and red caped man in the comic world… Well, I’m not muscled or caped like Superman, but the Summer sun is my Kryptonite.

I often can see and hear the heat waves whispering:

~ waaayioh, waaayioh, waaayiho )) ) ) )

~ Am I delirious?…

No, the truth is that I’m in much need of a little break from the high temperatures. I needed a boost of fresh glowing green in my life and I could not resist some leafy crunchy vegetable medley action. We all know what this leafy greens are brimming with fiber along with vitamins, minerals, and plant-based substances. Imagine what they can do for you.

August is a hard month to get great produce; too much heat here in Texas. I know the green leafy season is not here yet, but thanks to California’s amazing weather and hard-working farmers, I armed myself with some of my favorite green vegetables: kale, mustard greens, green cabbage, green apples, celery, onions and a little fresh corn. After a little chopp-ah-rooh, and combining all this shredded goodness with some light vinaigrette, this Green Green Coleslaw was born.

Green-Green-Cole-slaw

The combination of the different greens add great flavor and texture. A tangy oil honey and apple vinegar dressing, with a good punch of dry oregano, and seasons, make this green-green coleslaw light and crunchy. It is lightly dressed. No soggy cole slaw for me, thank you. If you are the creamy cole slaw type, this will convert you into the vinaigrette version.

This Green Green Coleslaw, makes a great side dish for, salmon, any white grilled fish, chicken, pork, beef , shrimp, tofu, tempeh, rice, lentils, white beans…you name it. You can add some roasted almonds, walnuts, or sunflower seeds and it will be a great left over for next day lunch.

Nice and easy, this recipe is all about fresh and nutritious green power all in one bowl. A salad
with great personality and flavors, this green-green cole slaw will restore your energy and refresh you on this fiery Summer. Like a good Kryptonite, you know? hehehe Enjoy.

Green--Green-Cole-slaw_Vegetables

Green Green Coleslaw

Serves 4-6 or 1 super man.

The vegetable action:

½ half of a small green cabbage head
4-5 San Jacinto Kale leaves
1 large mustard green leaf.
2 celery stalks
1 ear of sweet yellow corn
1 medium-large green apple
½ medium onion

For the dressing:

¼ cup grape seed oil
4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
1 heaping teaspoon dry oregano. (Not crazy about oregano?, tarragon, dry basil will go great too…)
½ teaspoon celery salt
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
The zest and the juice of one lemon.

Feel free to add some nuts, for crunch and protein, toasted almonds or walnuts will taste fantastic.
Or some golden raisins will add an extra sweet note. If you are a Mayonnaise lover, substitute the oil for 1/2 cup of mayonnaise and 2 tablespoons of plain greek yogurt.

Preparation:

1. Finely chop the cabbage, the kale (remember to remove the hard steam on the kale and the mustard greens), Finely chop the onions, celery and de-kernel the sweet corn. Chop the apple like  matchsticks.

Green-Green-Cole-slaw_chop,-chop,-chop
2. In a large bowl, whisk all your dressing ingredients, add all the chopped vegetables and toss well.

Green-green-Cole-slaw_dressing-and-de-kerning-the-corn
3. Set a side and let it rest for 10 to 15minutes before serving.
4. Taste, adjust for salt and pepper if necessary. Serve and Enjoy!

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Green-Green-Cole-slaw_close-up

Green-Green-Cole-slaw_Vegetables_tangy-and-fresh

 

 

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Sweet Potato Kale and Quinoa Fritters

Kale-Sweet potatoe-and-Quinoa-FrittersKale-Sweet-potatoe-and-Quinoa-Fritters-cooked-quinoa

So many Kale… so little time… root vegetables, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, all kinds of potatoes, carrots; an Autumn cornucopia is here and with it Thanksgiving. So gear up! I will be posting side dish appetizers, entrees, and everything with the potential of being on your Thanksgiving table… I think it’s great to add new dishes to the traditional menu, or revamp old recipes. And even if you are not a Thanksgiving celebration type, this seasonal produce is what you will enjoy preparing, whether it’s lunch, or dinner or a simple snak-petizer like this Sweet Potato Kale and Quinoa Fritters.

These little fritters are scrumptiously good. Loaded with vitamins and flavor, this little patties that have a crispy exterior and a soft creamy interior. The quinoa adds texture and a little crunch. Call them patties, fritters, creatures; you’re gonna love them. They taste equally good when they are warm or room temperature.
They make for a fabulous appetizer, side dish, or if you make them bigger. Two of these patties can be your lunch or sensible dinner with a salad on the side.

Kale-Sweetpotatoe-and-Quinoa-Fritters_platter-ready-to-eat!

Sweet Potato Kale and Quinoa Fritters

Makes 18-20 / 2”mini patties or 6 / 3.5” side patties

1 large or 2 medium sweet potatoes steamed and pureed. Makes about 3 cups
2 cups cooked Quinoa, you can use red quinoa if you prefer. Approximately 1 cup of uncooked quinoa yields 2.25 cups when cooked.
2 cups kale finely chopped.  I used Lacinto kale, a.k.a. Dinosaur Kale but, any flat kind kale will work.
2 eggs (vegan: substitute 2 tablespoons ground flax seed + 3 tablespoons of water)
½ cup panko or any kind of plain bread crumbs. If you have gluten allergies, ground old fashion oats or almond meal will work.
3 teaspoons cornstarch. If using the almond meal add one extra teaspoon.
1 teaspoon grated ginger
1 good pinch paprika or smoked paprika
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt

4-6 tablespoons grape seed oil, peanut oil, or coconut oil  to pan fry them.

*See note for alternative cooking method on the bottom of the post…

For the dipping sauce:

¼ cup Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper

In a small cup mix all ingredients and chill.

Hot sauce of your preference. I highly recommend Sriracha Sauce.

Directions:

1.-

Devein the Kale, make it into a tight roll and chop chiffonade style.

Kale-Sweetpotatoe-and-Quinoa-Fritters_Deveining-and-chiffonade-Kale-

2.-

In a medium size bowl, place all ingredients and mix well.

Kale-Sweetpotatoe-and-Quinoa-Fritters_Mixing-ingredients

3.-

In a medium size pan heat up about 4-6 tablespoons of grape seed oil, peanut oil or coconut oil.
With a small Ice cream scooper scoop about 6 patties into the pan and slightly flatten the tops.
Cook for about 3-4 minutes on each side or until golden brown.

 Kale-Sweet potatoe-and-Quinoa-Fritters_pan frying

4.-

Cool them on a rack.
Serve warm or at room temperature, with the ginger sauce on the side and some hot sauce of your preference. I highly recommend Sriracha…I love it….Enjoy!

Kale-Sweetpotatoe-and-Quinoa-Fritters_-fritters-resting-on-cooling-rack

Kale-Sweet potatoe-and-Quinoa-Fritters-delicious!

Kale-Sweet potatoe-and-Quinoa-Fritters_delicious-texture

Enjoy!!!

 *Note:  Many people have asked me about baking these fritters. It never occurred to me to bake a fritter… So I made a batch and baked half and fried half to see the differences in flavor and texture. Here is the veredict:

Baked Version:

I Baked them at 375F on a sheet pan lined with parchment. I brushed each patty with some grape seed oil and baked for 15-20 minutes flipping them half way.

The results:  Texture is more firm and they hold up more like a patty, where the inside is a little more dense. They do not remind me a fritter at all since they have no crispy outside texture.

Pan Fried: 

Well you see the results, they really do not absorb a lot of oil, I love love the contrast in textures, crispy caramelized outside, and creamy less thight inside. For me this is fritter.

I like them both in their own category… but a fritter its a fritter!

5 from 2 votes
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Sweet Potato Kale and Quinoa Fritters

www.yes-moreplease.com

They make for a fabulous appetizer, side dish, or if you make them bigger. Two of these patties can be your lunch or sensible dinner with a salad on the side.

Course Appetizer, Breakfast, Brunch, Lunch, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Healthy, wholesome
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 cups Sweet potato, about 1 large-2 medium potatoes, stemmed and pureed.
  • 2 cups Quinoa, cooked
  • 2 cups Lacinato-Dino Kale, chopped chiffonade
  • 2 Eggs
  • 3 teaspoons Cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup Panko Japanese style breadcrumbs, or any kind of plain bread crumbs. If you have gluten allergies, ground old fashion oats or almond meal will work.
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 pinch smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4-6 tablespoons grape seed oil, or coconut oil, to pan fry them

Dipping Sauce:

  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 pinch black pepper
  • Sriracha Sauce, to taste.

Instructions

  1. 1. Devein the Kale, make it into a tight roll and chop chiffonade style.

    2. In a medium size bowl, place all ingredients and mix well.

    3. In a medium size pan heat up about 4-6 tablespoons of grape seed oil, peanut oil or coconut oil. With a small Ice cream scooper scoop about 6 patties into the pan and slightly flatten the tops. Cook for about 3-4 minutes on each side or until golden brown.

    4.Cool them on a rack.

    5. Mix all ingredients of the dipping sauce on a small bowl.

    Serve fritters while warm or at room temperature, with the ginger sauce on the side and some hot sauce of your preference. I highly recommend Sriracha…I love it….Enjoy!

    Happy cooking!


Recipe Notes

 

 

Music Pairing: Perhaps Perhaps Perhaps by Cake

 

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Kale and Lentil Salad with Honey- Mustard Vinaigrette

Kale and Lentil Salad with Honey- Mustard Vinaigrette_kale purple leaf

Feeling blue?…Have some greens!. Kale is the number one power green, full of nutrients and rich in flavor.
If you wonder what the color green should taste like… it tastes just like kale.
It’s high percentage in Beta carotene, Vitamin K, vitamin A, Vitamin C, manganese, iron, potassium, calcium and fiber, make it the king of the greens. The season for this green is Autumn and Winter.
Kale salad will lift up your mood and give you plenty of energy through out the day.
There is Curly Kale, Dino Kale, Premier, Redboar, Siberian, Walking stick kale, Red russian, Kamome red, *sight and I assure you I’m missing more varieties, this are just a few of the ones I know and I’ve tried.
I remember the first time I tried Kale it was a bit intimidating, I felt like I was eating some prehistorical plant; it is a bit hard to chew when is raw and most of the varieties develop their nutrients and are easier to digest when they are steamed.
I’ve tried different cooking methods, some favorites of mine: Curly and Dino kale make great baked chips, Kamome is great for steaming it holds its shape beautifully, and the Redbor Kale I love it in salads like this because it adds great texture, I usually cut it or tier it in small pieces because is easier to chew, the vinaigrette helps to tenderize the leafy texture and what is great is that kale will not wilt when you add the vinaigrette.
Kale and Lentil Salad with Honey- Mustard Vinaigrette is a nutritious  and delicious combination. Kale, lentils, walnuts for some crunch is just what you need to boost your energy. This salad Makes a great Lunch or a light dinner side dish.

Kale and lentil salad with honey mustard vinaigrette_red kale

Kale and Lentil Salad with Honey- Mustard Vinaigrette_healthy and delicious

Kale and Lentil Salad with Honey- Mustard Vinaigrette.

Serves 4

4 cups of Redbor kale (washed and pad dry) ( you can use Dino Kale )
2-3 cups of cooked green lentils*
1 small red onion finely chopped
1 red bell pepper finely diced
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon of finely chopped parsley
A couple of tablespoons of Bulgarian Feta cheese

Honey- Mustard vinaigrette

2 teaspoons of whole grain mustard
2 tablespoons Extra virgin Olive oil
¼ cup rice vinegar
3 tablespoons of honey or ambar agave nectar.
the juice and zest of ½ lime or lemon.
Fresh ground pepper to taste.

*How to cook Lentils?

These green Lentils are best cook in lots of salted water, just like pasta. Bring water to a boil add 1 generous teaspoon of kosher salt and a Bay leaf. Add the lentils, bring back to a boil and cook for 5 minutes, then lower the heat to low and gentle simmer you barely want to see little bubbles on the top. Cook for another 15-20 minutes with no lid. after 15 minutes check on doneness. I like mine al-dente, specially for a salad like this, I want them with a bite. So I usually remove from heat at 15 minutes and cover them for another 10 minutes. Strain them and let them air dry for a few minutes on a single layer in flat tray.  I usually serve this salad with barely warm lentils, I love the texture and comfort.

Directions:

Start by removing the stems of the kale leaves and breaking the pieces into small bite size. In a small bowl whisk the vinaigrette ingredients. In a platter, layer the kale, lentils, chopped onions, red bell pepper, parsley and walnuts. Drizzle over the mustard vinaigrette. Mix and top it all with crumbled feta cheese.
Serve the salad at room temperature. It is also great in a pita with some Greek yogurt or served in avocado halves!!!Kale-and-Lentil-Salad-with-Honey--Mustard-Vinaigrette_ingredients-layout

Kale and Lentil Salad with Honey- Mustard Vinaigrette_vegetarian_healthy dinner

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Enjoy!

Music Pairing: Don’t Worry be happy – Bob Marley

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