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Kale and Brussel sprouts salad

Kale and Brussel sprouts salad

I’m still loving this winter’s kale, and I tried another recipe that has found its way to my list of favorites.  I discovered this Kale and Brussel Sprouts Salad online when I was looking for something new to serve for dinner.  My daughter liked the recipe so much that she asked me to send it to her.  (This blog is my way of archiving favorite recipes for our family.  It’s so easy to find recipes using the search box on the right.)

I took the time to saute the Brussel sprouts and kale rather than using them raw.  I did cool the lightly cooked vegetables in the refrigerator before tossing the rest of the ingredients with them.  You could add all manner of crunchy bits — pomegranate seeds, pumpkin seeds, etc. in addition to the nuts.  I think that it is the grated cheese (I used Parmesan instead of Pecorino) that makes this salad taste so good.

Enjoy!

Brussel sprouts

Brussel sprouts

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Kale

Kale

Discovering Kale

December 29, 2013

Curly kale

Curly kale

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Kale for breakfast, sauteed with a little onion and mushrooms -- a nest for a fried egg.

Kale for breakfast, sautéed with a little onion and mushrooms — a nest for a fried egg

Until this winter, I’ve never cooked with kale.  So discovering how much I like it feels like a new adventure in eating.  I am in the honeymoon stage, singing its praises like a new convert.  Have you been saved?

It turns out that kale is one of those superfoods you should be incorporating into your diet for healthy living.  An article in the May 2013 issue of the AARP Magazine touts its benefits:  “Rich in vitamin K, which is essential for blood clotting, kale also contains lutein, a nutrient that reduces the risk of cataracts and other eye disorders.  One serving of cooked kale has nearly triple the amount of lutein that a serving of raw spinach has.”

So good and good for you, too.

Watercolor sketch of kale leaf

Watercolor sketch of kale leaf

 

 

 

 

 

“In this book, I am looking for what I miss, every day, right in front of me, while walking around the block.”
— Alexandra Horowitz, On Looking:  Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes

The book On Looking

The book On Looking

“What an epiphany to reconceive a city . . .”

I really like the idea of this book.  In it, Alexandra Horowitz takes short urban walks with eleven “experts” in various fields, and as they share what it is like to notice things through their eyes, Horowitz herself begins to see with new-found vision and understanding.  The eleven walking companions are:  a 19-month-old toddler, a geologist, a typographer, the illustrator and writer Maira Kalman, a field naturalist and insect expert, a wildlife biologist, an analyst of pedestrian movement, a medical doctor, a blind woman, a sound engineer, and a dog.

I was hoping one of her experts would have been a horticulturist or botanist, because it is most likely plants that I attend to on the walks in my neighborhood.  It would have been instructive to compare notes.

I know one thing.  This book will prompt you to go out for a walk around the block in your neighborhood.  Here are a few photos of a late winter walk through my eyes and camera lens:

Crocuses

Crocuses

Rhododendron bud

Rhododendron bud

Witch hazel

Witch hazel

Sunlight through kale leaf

Sunlight through kale leaf

New leaves

New leaves

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ornamental kale with melting frost

Ornamental kale with melting frost

”  . . . the object of my school is to show how many extraordinary things even a lazy and ordinary man may see if he can spur himself to the single activity of seeing.”
— G. K. Chesterton, Tremendous Trifles

“The world will never starve for want of wonders, but only for want of wonder.”
— G. K. Chesterton, Tremendous Trifles

“O wonderful,
wonderful,
and most wonderful wonderful!
And yet again wonderful . . .”
— William Shakespeare, As You Like It

I spend altogether too much time indoors in winter and feel starved for nature and light.  I don’t know why I resist the outdoors so much, because once I’m in the rhythm of walking and looking — even in the cold — I’m always glad I made the effort.  My spirit seems to open up outdoors.

I almost always find things that I am moved to photograph.  Like this water-beaded ornamental kale in a neighbor’s winter garden.  Worthy of an attempt to capture in my nature journal.

My work table

My work table

Watercolor sketch of kale leaves

Watercolor sketch of kale leaves