Kale is a leafy, green vegetable that belongs to the Brassica family, a type of cabbage. The leaves of the kale plant provide an earthy flavor while offering high nutritional value and low calories. With verdant leaves and sturdy stalks, kale is loaded with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory nutrients, and a compound called Zeaxanthin which has been shown to help prevent age-related loss of vision. It’s also a great source of calcium and is rich in beta carotene, Vitamin K, Vitamin C and Lutein. This superfood will bring flavor and nutrients to any of your dishes at home. Try pairing it with a dry Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.
A Brief History
Kale (Brassica oleracea) is a descendant of wild cabbage and originated in Asia Minor. it was cultivated by both the ancient Greeks and Romans and is believed to have been brought to Britain by either the Celts or Romans. Many of the common varieties that we eat today are the same as those cultivated 2,000 years ago. Green (Curly) Kale played an important role in the early European diet, having been a significant crop during ancient Roman times and a popular vegetable eaten by peasants in the Middle Ages. English settlers brought kale to the United States in the 17th century.
How to Select:
Look for kale that is firm with deep-colored leaves and hardy stems.
How to Store:
Keep kale in the crisper or the coldest part of your refrigerator loosely wrapped in a plastic bag. Though it seems like a sturdy vegetable, kale will quickly wilt and turn bitter.
How to Prepare:
Always rinse your produce under cool water before using. Break the leaves from the stalk and trim away the center stalk. Green Kale can be torn or cut into strips for a simple salad, steamed, or sautéed for a variety of dishes. You can even bake kale for a healthy alternative to chips! There is no wrong way to eat this superfood!
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