The Big Green Monster

It’s green, it’s fibrous, it’s crisp.

Written by Jeannie Liautaud

It’s kale, the green monster of the leafy vegetable world. Lately, its superfood benefits have blown up in the media. But don’t be fooled, kale’s perks aren’t just another fad. This veggie is versatile and nutrient-packed, and can add kick to your everyday recipes.

I’ll admit, kale sometimes gets a bad reputation. Due to its coarse texture, it often plays sidekick to other vegetables as a decorative garnish. But beets, don’t kale my vibe. Kale’s nutritional density was first recognized during the rations of World War II, when cheap-yet-healthy food was a literal life-saver. Recently, kale’s full potential is being recognized by eaters throughout the world.

As far as nourishment goes, kale is the cream of the crop. One serving packs a punch of Vitamin K and C, iron, omega-3 and fiber. Kale contains every essential amino acid. It also stays fresh longer than most vegetables; it can hang out in your fridge for up to a week and a half. The phytonutrient molecules in kale amp up your body’s power to fight heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

You can rave about health benefits for days, but the unique flavor of kale is what makes it stand out. Its rich flavor adds sparkle to salads, spikes smoothies and is quite the spectacle when sautéed. My personal favorite is kale marinated in vinegar, olive and honey, topped with blue cheese. Still not convinced? You can bake or microwave the veggie to make healthy chips.

There’s never been a better time for this ol’ phrase: what doesn’t kale you makes you stronger. Give it a try for yourself.

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