Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Vegan Creamed Kale

Who would have thought the dish that would bring me back to post on my woefully neglected blog would be a recipe involving kale, let alone creamed kale. That's right. Creamed kale.

I first discovered this recipe while perusing the deli at Whole Foods…It was lunchtime, I was hungry and out of the corner of my eye I saw a tag for “Vegan Creamed Kale.” First of all, I am always looking to incorporate more greens into my diet in a creative and innovative way. Secondly, I felt as though us "vegans" received the short end of the stick when it came to creamed veggies. Needless to say, my interest was piqued. So when I sat down to test the plate of goodness that lay in front of me, I was pleasantly surprised.

Let’s talk for a moment about kale. You know, the stuff that for years was nothing more than a garnish on a plate at your local Applebee’s. As far as its origins, kale is a member of the Brassica family of vegetables that includes cabbage, collard greens and Brussels sprouts, all of which are known for their richness in anti-oxidants and phytonutrients. The health benefits of consuming kale are innumerable. Kale has not only been proven to reduce inflammation (something to do with omega 3’s and Vitamin K which is a key nutrient to help regulate our bodies inflammatory process), but the fiber properties have shown to help lower cholesterol and kale has also been touted as a major player in the detoxification process. Kale also contains cancer preventative nutrients called glucosinolates…Need I say more?

There are many different ways you can consume kale and reap the many health benefits it has to offer. I like to juice kale and incorporate it into my morning green juice with an apple, orange, ginger, and cucumber. I also love to make this salad, which features not only the good green, but also shredded carrot, daikon radish, and red pepper, cilantro, parsley and mint all covered in a delectable orange ginger dressing…Yum.

But honestly, if you’re looking for something down-home that you can serve as a side with just about anything, the following recipe courtesy of our friends at Whole Foods is an excellent way to incorporate this superfood into your diet.

Eat Healthy, Stay Happy.


Vegan Creamed Kale
Serves 4


½ cup low-sodium vegetable broth
1 white onion, finely chopped
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/2 cup raw cashews (the recipe calls for ¼ cup, but I used a little more to make the sauce thicker)
2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp mellow white miso
Pinch of nutmeg
Pinch of red pepper flakes
4 cups chopped kale or other dark, leafy green (I use a bag of frozen kale, Whole Foods brand comes already shredded)


Heat broth in a large skillet over medium heat. Add white onion and cook until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a blender or food processor, add almond milk, cashews, nutritional yeast, onion powder, miso, nutmeg and pepper flakes and puree until smooth.

Transfer blended mixture back to skillet and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Stir in kale and continue simmering, tossing often until kale is just tender, about 5 minutes.

Season with salt and pepper and serve warm.

( In the above photo, I served my creamed kale with veggies I sauteed in my Pistachio Pesto.)