My bale of kale

The other Friday, as I was carrying out my shop, I realised broccoli was soon to leave the season’s pickings. In my haste I picked up a floret of broccoli. I then was waylaid by the reduced vegetable section, where my gaze fell upon a bag of kale that was reduced to 50p so it flew into my basket.

It was only when I was home and I’d squashed it into the fridge, turning said fridge into a gloomy forest, that I realised the bag was in fact the same size and shape as my pillow. I spent fraught night planning kale-based dinners and lunches.

Thank you, kale hay bale. You made me creative, push the boundaries; you filled me up with plenty of fibre, Vitamins K, A and C and the forest of green on my plates would have made an Oread’s mouth water.

I took to social media for recipe inspiration and found plenty of food for thought. I was primarily looking for something that could be frozen and something that I could have for lunch. Lauren Caris sent me her recipe for broccoli and quinoa soup with chickpeas which I used as the basis for my broccoli and kale soup (sadly without onions and garlic) but it looked and smelled quite fantastic so I’m looking forward to retrieving it from the icy depths and taking it for my packed lunches this week.

Now as one or two of you may have realised, avo and egg is quite a thing. They appear together on Instagram every so often, so delightful is the orange, white and green combo under those life-enhancing filters which sadly cannot hide the fact that while avocado may have health benefits galore it is not especially beneficial for the planet. Eggs, incidentally, aren’t that great either, but I’m trying to make eggs occasional rather than ubiquitous. I decided to replace av for kale and poach my egg on toast. I was v much looking forward to it, the poached egg tinted a gorgeously ghoulish green because I used the kale cooking water. I also added this Basque piment sauce which is spicy and salty and the colour of terracotta. The result: woody, firm leaves bedding a soft poached egg with runny yolk peeking out and sinking down into soft brown bread, to which the spicy sauce added some snappy je ne sais quoi. I really recommend for a lunch – you could experiment with harissa, chilli flakes, paprika on top – your lunch, your rulez.

Here is one word of warning though: kale can leave a lingering ‘aroma’ (a bit of a euphemism tbh) once it has been cooked which, when in a small flat, can be a bit unsociable…

There are a lot of recipes that go far above and beyond what I did – if you’re interested the Guardian showcases 10 kale recipes which all look smashing here.

Flower Sprout, Vegetable, Brussel Sprout, Curly Cale

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