cheesy-kale

Greens gratin with tons of cheese.

Fun party trick: Ask your friends to guess how many pounds of greens went into this fabulously cheesy gratin. Three humongous bunches of kale  get drowned in garlic- and rosemary-infused cream, then blanketed in cheddar cheese and panko and placed into a hot oven, where they sizzle and shrink down.

Ingredients

  • 1 medium onion
  • 5 garlic cloves, divided
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 rosemary sprig
  • 1½ tsp. kosher salt, plus more
  • ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper, plus more
  • 4 medium or 3 large bunches of kale and/or Swiss chard (2–2½ lb. total)
  • 1 lemon
  • ¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 6 oz. high-quality sharp cheddar cheese
  • ½ cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 1 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

Step 1
Preheat oven to 350°. First, prep the cream sauce: Peel and quarter 1 medium onion. Smash 4 garlic cloves and unpeel. Place onion and garlic in a medium saucepan. Pour in 2 cups heavy cream and stir in 1 rosemary sprig, 1½ tsp. Diamond Crystal or ¾ tsp. kosher salt, and ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper. Simmer over low heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion and garlic are very soft, 15–20 minutes.

Step 2
While cream cooks, remove ribs from 4 medium bunches of Tuscan kale. Tear leaves into big pieces and wash. It’s okay if some water still clings to the leaves—this will help them wilt later. If you don’t have a bowl big enough to hold all of your greens, pile them on a baking sheet instead.

Step 3
When cream is ready, pluck out rosemary sprig and discard. Finely grate zest of ½ lemon into cream and stir in ¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes. Transfer to a blender and blend until smooth.

Step 4
Heat a large (as large as possible—12″ is the goal) ovenproof skillet over medium. Add about one-quarter of greens, cover skillet (use a baking sheet if you don’t have a lid), and cook until wilted, 3–4 minutes. Scoot wilted greens to one side of pan. Add another quarter of greens, cover pan, and cook to wilt, 3–4 minutes. Remove from heat and place skillet on a rimmed baking sheet.

Step 6
Pile remaining greens on top of wilted kale, press down to compact as needed. This will look CRAZY, but the greens shrink dramatically in the oven. Carefully pour cream mixture over. It’s okay if it drips a little—that’s why it’s on a baking sheet. Break cheese slices into large crumbles distributing evenly over top. Sprinkle panko mixture over.

Step 7
Bake gratin until cheese is browned and bubbling and panko is toasted, 50–55 minutes.

Step 8
Let cool 5 minutes before serving.

See recipe with video instructions here

kale pasta

Kale Pesto With Whole Wheat Pasta

This kale pesto inspired us to keep spreading the word that there is still no better or more delicious way to eat your greens. This recipe is part of the 2020 Healthyish Feel Good Food Plan, a ten-day headstart toward eating well all year long.

 

Ingredients

4 servings

  • 1 large bunch Tuscan kale, ribs and stems removed
  • Kosher salt
  • 12 oz. farro pasta or whole wheat pasta, or GF pasta
  • ⅓ cup raw pistachios
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 oz. Parmesan, finely grated, plus more for serving
  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Prep:

Step 1

Cook kale leaves in a large pot of boiling salted water until bright green and wilted, about 30 seconds. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet with tongs; keep water boiling. Let kale cool slightly; wring out excess water with your hands.

Step 2

Cook pasta in pot of boiling water, stirring occasionally, until al dente.

Step 3

Blend nuts, oil, garlic, and ⅓ cup water in a blender or food processor until very smooth. Add kale and 1 oz. Parmesan. Purée, adding water 1 Tbsp. at a time as needed, until smooth. Transfer pesto to a large bowl.

Step 4

Using tongs, transfer pasta to bowl with pesto; add butter and ⅓ cup pasta cooking liquid. Toss, adding more pasta cooking liquid by the tablespoonful if needed, until sauce coats pasta. Divide among bowls; top with more Parmesan and a few grinds of pepper.

Radishes deserve a place in your heart!

And, not just because they have rad in their name. Don’t roll your eyes at this underrated root!

You can eat the entire vegetable, So, no waste.  Those radish tops? I use them to make pesto!. Also, there are so many varieties of radishes.

This week we’re making this:

Radish and White Onion Slaw

  • 6 cups thinly shaved or sliced radishes
  • ¼ white onion, very thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt
  • ¼ cup seasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

Prep:

Step 1

Combine vegetables and onion in a medium bowl; season generously with salt. Let sit until they start to release their water, 8–10 minutes, then begin to massage, gently at first so they don’t break, then harder as they begin to expel their liquid, until softened to about the texture of coleslaw. Pour off all excess liquid and add vinegar and oil; toss to coat. Taste and season with more salt if needed.

Step 2

Do Ahead: Slaw can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and chill.

white & kale bean soup

We love a meal-in-a-bowl!

This is a confessional moment!

I love to cook. But, sometimes we’re just too busy. It’s so great to be able pick up a some delicious, organic, fresh veggies from our farmers market and throw them all in a large pot for a simple dinner.

This week we are making a wonderful, rich soup (really a stew).

First we sauté a chopped onion with some garlic (I really don’t mince the garlic, just chop it) and then we add in mushrooms. Once all that has cooked a bit we add the veggie stock and de-stemmed kale plus beans (I like cannelloni the best— I used canned).

I make this a lot and often oven roast radishes to toss in too. And, if I am in the mood for another protein I’ll add hot Italian sausage after the onion has cooked a bit. Lastly, add about two containers of veggie stock.

Truthfully, you can’t go wrong here. Sometimes I add a chopped tomato or a chopped carrot that’s been hanging around too long. Let the whole shebang simmer for 30 minutes or so and you’ve got dinner!

Here is a lovely recipe I use as a “go-by”.

Bon Appetit!

 

 

We love radishes!

So why do we love radishes?
Hmmmm…
Maybe because you can eat everything, including the greens, and do so much with them. Plus, they’re so beautiful too!

This time of year radishes are plentiful from our participating farmers.

So many varieties too:

  • Watermelon Radish. Hardly the prettiest on the outside, But, stunning inside.
  • Sparkler Radish
  • French Breakfast Radish.
  • Daikon White Radish.
  • Malaga Radish.
  • White Hailstone Radish

They’re also rich in minerals such as potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, copper, calcium, iron and manganese. This heavy vitamin and mineral load means that radishes are indicated to combat a number of serious diseases, such as cancer and diabetes, and may also help with minor ailments such as coughs and colds.

We found a great Recipe: (The important stuff.)

We used radishes from Wills Eden Farm and The Moon Farm as well as spring onions and garlic from The Moon Farm. We included the greens too.

Here is a link to the recipe. Enjoy!

Why I started the Castleberry Farmers Market

I moved to Castleberry Hill in 2017 and one of the first things I noticed was that “good for you food” was really, really hard to come by in the neighborhood. Our neighborhood is actually considered a food desert… meaning people have limited access to affordable, healthy food. This just shouldn’t be.

I created the Castleberry Farmers Market to make a positive impact on my community.

Fast forward…this is my third year supporting the community with fresh, locally produced and affordable food.
This seasonal market also supports the local farmers, bakers, and other purveyors of homemade goods.

I would love for you to become a 2022 Castleberry Farmers Market Vendor! The weekly market resumes April 11 and is every Monday. Click this link to download the application and apply today! I want to support you!

You can choose between weekly, monthly or bi-monthly vending. And, farmers vend for free!

Please email your application to me, Diana, at info@castlerryfarmersmarket.org

 

We Need YOU!

In a little more than two months, it will be spring time here.

What does that mean to you?

The Farmers Market will start up again. Yahoo!

To create the best experience for our vendors and customers, we will hire a Farmers Market Assistant.

The most important part is this:

It’s a fun part-time job for every Monday from 3:30-7:30 and it begins on April 11. The pay is $500 per month. That’s pretty good for just four days in one month. A vehicle is required. So… if you are a friendly, energetic person who enjoys people and finds helping others rewarding and challenging…this job is for you!

You would be the primary contact as our Monday on-site staff person during the Market doing the following:

  • Initial Set up
  • Staffing the entrance booth
  • Managing EBT (it’s easy, I promise)
  • Fielding vendor questions for set up
  • Managing breakdown

For additional details, email Diana at info@castleberryfarmersmarket.org.

I love this community!

Giving Back

You probably have been asked to volunteer in the past for some good cause and thought, “that will be too big of a commitment” and didn’t do it. I get it. Sometimes it is too much.

But, if you think in different terms…like, I can give as much time as I want or I can quit whenever I want or…I want to give just a little back to my community…doesn’t that make it more palatable?

We would love to have you come and support the neighborhood and local farmers to help once in a while. It’s rewarding and feels good. Ya know what I mean?

Maybe it’s just one Monday all season. Or, maybe an hour here or there. We’d be so grateful and so would the local vendors.

Think about it.

The first Farmers Market is April 11. Email me…please: info@castleberryfarmersmarket.org