Tuesday, September 4, 2012

A Few of My Favorite Things....Part 1


 Kale is one of my favorite things.  Raw.  Baked.  Steamed.  You name it - I love it.

I don't think that was always the case.  I'm sure I haven't always liked it.  But through the practice of yoga & wanting to feel better, I began eating kale more.  And the more I eat it, the more I like it. 

Recently I've begun noticing the lines at the drive-thru when I drive by fast food restaurants.  I'm repeatedly stunned...there are almost always lines.  I get it - it's fast, it's easy, it's cheap....and yes, I have been there myself.

But, it's definitely not good for you.  It seems like a good idea at the time, but I never feel good afterwards.  And one of the problems with eating fast food consistently is that you forget what it feels like to feel good...really good.  You get used to feeling tired & heavy & foggy & cranky.

It can be a big leap to stop eating fast food.  One of the things that helps is easy, good for you food.  Kale has become one of my most favorite, if not my favorite, vegetable.  Especially this time of year.  You can get good, fresh kale - cheap!  At farmer's markets & far stands, and even in the grocery store.

These are three easy, great tasting recipes that are regulars in our house.  If the thought of kale makes you cringe - try the smoothie or the cooked kale first.  You may not be ready to take that leap of giving up fast food, but maybe you can bring some balance into your diet (and into your life) by incorporating these recipes into your routine.  And maybe you'll notice that you feel better when you eat better.  And that's how the shift begins.


Raw Kale Salad
1 bunch, fresh kale
1 lemon
1-2 cloves garlic
2 -3 tablespoons olive oil
salt & pepper

Pull kale leaves from stem, rip into bite size pieces, rinse & place in bowl.
Finely chop garlic & add to kale
Squeeze juice from lemon onto kale
Drizzle olive oil over kale
Toss kale, evenly coating it with lemon juice & oil.  Add salt & pepper to taste.

This tastes best when left to marinate for a few hours.  The lemon juice softens the kale & the kale picks up the flavor of the garlic.  But in our house, it usually lasts only for minutes! 

Fruit & Kale Smoothie
3-4 kales leaves
1 cup frozen blueberries
1 cup pineapple
1 small banana
1/2 lime
1 cup water
agave (if desired)
additional fruit, if desired

Pull kale leaves from stem, rinse & put in blender
Add banana, blueberries, pineapple,  water & juice from lime.  If you like your smoothies sweet, add 1 tablespoon agave.
Blend until smooth.
This is great for kids who don't like greens - because of the blueberries, you can't see that there is kale in this (don't let them see you make it!).  The kale adds some texture, so start with just a couple leaves & then increase the amount of kale as you like.  You can use fresh blueberries - but I like to add ice when I do, for that icy consistency.

Cooked Kale
1 bunch, fresh kale
1-2 cloves garlic
2 -3 tablespoons olive oil
2-3 tablespoons maple syrup
salt & pepper

Pull kale leaves from stem, rip into bite size pieces & rinse.
Finely chop garlic.
Add oil & kale & garlic to saute pan.  Toss the kale as it cooks & cook until just wilted - add maple syrup.

**If you're feeling crazy...save the kale stems & use them for green juice!  Recipe for that will be in "A few of My Favorite Things - Part 2**

So, "when the dog bites, when the bee stings, when your feeling SAD" (standard american diet).  Simply remember one of my favorite things...and then you won't feel so bad.

You can now find my blog at the Register Citizen: http:http://www.registercitizen.com/blogs/life/





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