When I saw the recipe for Fiery Kale with Garlic and Olive Oil on the Kitchn blog I knew I had to make it. As I’ve mentioned before, we really enjoy “spicy” and so the minute we see that a recipe suggests that it will heat up our taste buds, we’re all in.
In the last few years, kale has become very popular — there are countless recipes for it in almost every magazine.
But, we were on the kale bandwagon long before kale became a trend.
In fact, our purchasing history for kale goes back more than 20 years. It was a staple in our household. There was always a huge bunch in the fridge’s vegetable drawer.
Ironically, we never tasted it.
Then what did we do with the kale?
Well, Bubba ate it.
Bubba was our oldest son’s pet iguana. Our son brought him home from the pet store as a tiny 8-inch lizard. Bubba immediately let us know he was very discerning when it came to his food.
He refused to munch on anything other than fresh kale and fresh carrots with the ferny green tops. For the kale, our son had to cut out the hard stem and tear the leathery leaves into bite-size pieces. The fresh carrots had to be grated and sprinkled on top of the kale.
If it wasn’t just so — he would pout, step on his dish and upend it.
This was his way of telling us exactly what he thought of his meal.
One time we ran out of fresh carrots and our son substituted bagged carrots instead. He sniffed the contents of his dish, shook his head then stepped on his bowl dumping the entire “salad”. Bubba turned around and lumbered off to lay on his heat rock.
By that time Bubba was 4 feet long.
We had him for twelve years before he went to his big garden in the sky.
I wished we would have had the Fiery Kale with Garlic and Olive Oil recipe all those years ago. We could have been enjoying that delicious green along with Bubba.
Our iguana knew something about kale we hadn’t realized yet — how delicious it can be.
If you don’t like spicy, you can control the heat by decreasing the crushed red pepper flakes. And instead of the pancetta, you can use bacon or hard salami cut into 1/4 – inch strips, whichever you prefer.
Just make it “Your Way”.
Tutti a tavola è pronto!
Un caro saluto e alla prossima.
Fiery Kale with Garlic and Olive Oil
- 10 oz. package organic Tuscan Kale --we got the brand from Trader Joe that is ready to use
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 large garlic cloves sliced thin
- 2 ounces pancetta diced *
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/3 cup chicken broth
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Heat the oil in a large, wide high-sided sauté pan over medium heat. Add the garlic, pancetta, and red pepper flakes and sauté for about 3 minutes. Be sure not to burn the garlic. Turn up the heat to medium high and add the kale and the chicken broth. Cook stirring often until the leaves turn from leathery stiff to shrunken soft strands of deep, dark green, about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper and serve immediately.
- * Can substitute 2 ounces of diced bacon or hard salami that is quartered and cut into 1/4-inch strips
- Adapted from The Kitchn recipe of Fiery Kale with Garlic and Olive Oil
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