The Kale Bandwagon

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Have you noticed that kale seems to be everywhere lately? or is it just me? I have always loved this vegetable (actually anything green and leafy for that matter – I even liked canned spinach when I was a kid) in soups and sauteed with a little garlic.  I never thought to eat it raw until we were in Sedona, Arizona and decided to take a night off from restaurant food.  Fortunately, our room had a small – but well appointed – kitchen. We ended up finding an all natural market and bought some fish and saw this salad in the take out case.  It was really great!! their version had parsnip in it – mine does not. It is ridiculously easy to make and holds up really, really well. Actually this whole meal was really easy and only took about 30 minutes total to get on the table last night.

If you ever get a chance to go to Sedona, by all means go!!! It is a really beautiful and spiritual place.  The red rock formations are incredible and depending on the time of day, look different due to the changing light. If you allow yourself some time and quiet you can almost see images of Native American faces in the rock, which I found very comforting.  The area is noted for a series of vortexes – places where they say the energy is very strong and healing. I can’t speak to that, but I did find it peaceful.

Bell Rock Vortex

Bell Rock Vortex

Ok enough of that, on to the recipes:

Kale Salad

1  bag of chopped kale or I bunch washed, stemmed and chopped

3 carrots, shredded

5 radishes, shredded

1 cup of finely chopped purple cabbage

Strongly flavored Salad dressing – Stop & Shop sells a good Italian that is all natural/organic called Nature’s Promise, or you can make your own or use your favorite – Kraft Zesty Italian is also good….

Combine all ingredients at least a half hour before eating and make sure the veggies are well coated with dressing. Allow it to marinate – the longer the better. That’s it. Really.

Seared Scallops with Seasoned Oil

Large sea scallops (from a reputable fishmonger or a store that moves volumes of fish to ensure freshness – remember fish should have NO SMELL)

Salt and Fresh Cracked Pepper

canola oil

(Seasoned Oil – 3 tblspoons of extra virgin olive oil, 1 clove of chopped garlic, 1 tsp. of smoked paprika, 1/4 tsp. of cayenne pepper combine and let marinate)

Heat oil in a large skillet – cast iron is the best for this. Make sure the pan is screaming hot and slightly smoking. Salt and pepper the scallops and be generous with the pepper. Sear scallops for 1-2 mintes on each side, or until they begin to have a brown crust.  Do not overcook these delicate morsels or they will be tough. Let them sit for about 10 minutes before serving, them place them on plate and top with the seasoned oil. Do not worry about undercooking…if they are very fresh you can eat them raw without any difficulty.

Serve with a grain ( we used quinoa – you can find this anywhere and follow the directions).



About joyfulg1

I have been an obsessed cook for the last twenty seven years. My infatuation started slowly, gradually widening my cookbook collection - and my hips, unfortunately! It all started with a new boyfriend who was interested in all natural, preservative and additive -free whole foods. After a few too many disasterous tempeh burgers and tofu pups, I was determined to find a way to make meals that he would eat that actually tasted good. It must have worked, because we are still happily married after all these years. It has been great to watch the evolution of cooking in America since that time, and the products that are now easy to pick up in your local supermarkets and farmer's markets. Now we have become more interested in travel and are finding inspiration everywhere we go.

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