Easy and Tasty Ways to Add Kale and Other Veggies to Your Family's Diet

 

Sauteed Kale with Pine Nuts

When my two girls were toddlers I tried to introduce as many vegetables into their diet as I could. While I could not get to get them to eat steamed broccoli, I was able to get them to eat it mixed with their whole wheat pasta by putting a bit of pesto on it. Later I got into the habit of throwing other vegetables, such as carrots and asparagus in with the boiling pasta during the last two minutes of cooking, which expanded the types of veggies they would eat. Eventually they started to eat steamed veggies with just a bit of olive oil and garlic salt and pepper.  My girls loved Brussels sprouts so much they would get angry if one took more than the other.

My girls are now in their teens (one is away at college) and they try to eat green vegetables every day. One of their favorites these days is kale, which is one of the healthiest vegetables they can eat. My daughter in college is fortunate enough to have a full kitchen in her dorm room, so she can cook her own meals and avoid the "freshman 15" that comes with eating in the cafeteria. She buys bags of chopped kale at Trader Joe's and often makes our favorite kale recipe, which I have included below. I have gotten into the habit of adding chopped kale to my soups, which makes them a bit heartier and healthier. Give it a try, you'll like it--I promise.

Sautéed Kale (or Swiss Chard) with Pine Nuts, makes 4 servings

Ingredients

1 bunch of kale (or Swiss chard)

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1/3 cup chopped red onion

½ cup white wine

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Salt and pepper to taste

2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts

Directions

Pull the kale (or Swiss chard) leaves off of the stems. Chop the stems into small pieces. Set chopped stems aside. Coarsely chop the leaves. Set the chopped stems aside.  In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Stir in the garlic and onion and cook for 1 minute.  Add the chopped stems and the white wine.  Simmer for about 5 minutes or until the stems begin to soften. Stir in the coarsely chopped leaves and cook until the leaves are wilted (or slightly softened for the kale). The leaves will be a dark green. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in the lemon juice, Parmesan cheese, and pine nuts. Serve. 

~merry carter~

Cooking Cowgirl

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