Let me just start off my saying that I am obsessed with this recipe. If I could eat it everyday, I would. Which is a lot coming from me because that honor would normally go to some sort of Mexican food. But when you take fresh rustic french bread, add creamy brie, top it with sauteed kale and shallots and then grill it with a panini press, how could you go wrong?
Kale has taken over my world lately. It is a great substitute for lettuce, is tasty both raw and cooked, and is one of the most nutritionally packed vegetables there is. I was first introduced to kale in our weekly CSA boxes back in SLO and at first, I had absolutely no idea what to do with it. And, gasp, there were probably
quite a few weeks where it ended up in the trash can, untouched and unused.
And then I discovered kale chips. Cheesy, salty kale chips. I spent the rest of the winter making them whenever we got kale in our box, but eventually grew bored of just consuming kale this one way. There had to be other ways that were just as good! So, I started to do a little research and branched out a bit and then, all of the sudden, kale was everywhere. In every magazine I read, every food blog I followed–you couldn’t escape it!
I love having so much inspiration everywhere and since that first encounter two years ago, kale has become a weekly staple in our household.
There was a great article on NPR last year trying to explain the popularity of kale:
Why has kale gotten an edge on all the other dark leafy greens? Tamara Duker Freuman, a dietician and nutritionist with a fantastic blog called What I’m Eating Now, says kale scores a perfect 1,000 on the Aggregate Nutrient Density Index, a food-rating system that measures nutrients per calorie.
Nutritionally, kale has Vitamins K, A and C, and calcium and iron going for it. The distinctive crunch of baked or fried kale is also likely to appeal to people of all ages, says Duker Freuman.
Kale’s advantage might also be in its flavor. According to Kitchen Window contributor Susan Russo, kale and spinach are among the sweetest greens. Collards, meanwhile, are earthy and grassy, while turnip and mustard greens in contrast have a distinctively bitter flavor.
So whatever way it might be–salad, stir fry, smoothies, chips, or sandwiches, keep eating your kale folks!
Brie, Kale, & Shallot Panini
2 slices rustic french bread loaf
2 thick slices brie
1 leaf kale, chopped
1/2 medium shallot, chopped
Heat olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat.
Add the shallots and cook, stirring often, until they become translucent.
Stir in kale then cover with a lid, stirring occasionally, until the kale becomes shrunken and steamed.
Spread brie on one bread slice then top with kale and shallot mixture.
Cover with the other slice of bread and then using a panini press or cast iron grill, cook until the cheese is melted and bread is toasted.
Time: 15 minutes