Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Kale with Cashews

It's safe to say that we are addicted to kale. We eat it several days a week; lunches, dinners, salads, soups... everything goes great with kale. But because kale is so delicious and seriously one of the healthiest foods on earth, we continue to feed our addiction. Kale really goes with everything. Usually, we saute kale in a hot pan and serve it as a side dish. It is delicious plain and simple, but it also holds its own with some strong spices and seasonings.
This recipe is our basic tachnique for cooking kale. With a hot cast iron skillet, it is unnecessary to add any oil. The kale wilts and releases its moisture from the heat alone. Sweet cashews, the floral perfume of toasted coriander seed and the pungent duo of garlic and ginger round out the flavors of this healthy and tasty side dish. We served it with Thai curry and noodles, but this side would also pair nicely with an Indian feast or any Asian cuisine. Enjoy your kale! Your body will thank you.

Kale with Cashews
1 large bunch kale, stems removed and leaves torn into bite-sized pieces
1 tablespoon whole coriander seeds, coarsely crushed
3/4 cup raw cashews
2 tbs. garlic-ginger paste (about 2 cloves garlic and 1-inch slice of ginger)
2 tbs. soy sauce, or to taste
juice of 1/2 lemon or lime

First, prepare the kale. The easiest way to remove the fibrous stems is by hand. Grasp the bottom of the stem with one hand and tear the leaf away on either side of the stem with the other hand. Once the stems are removed, tear or chop the kale to desired size.
Heat a skillet over medium high heat. Dry toast the coriander seed and cashews, stirring frequently, until lightly browned and fragrant. Add kale and raise heat to high. It will cook quickly once the pan is very hot. Once it begins to wilt, stir to combine with cashews. Add garlic-ginger paste, soy sauce and lemon or lime juice. Stir to combine and turn off heat. The hot pan will evaporate excess liquid. Taste for seasoning and add more soy sauce and lemon or lime juice, if desired. Serve immediately. Eat it while it's hot, and let the addiction begin!