If you’re like most people, you’ve heard plenty about kale. It’s all the rage these days – in smoothies, salads, and even as chips! But have you ever stopped to wonder what exactly a head of kale is? Fear not – we’re here to give you the lowdown on one of the trendiest greens around.
So What Exactly Is Kale?
Kale is a leafy green vegetable that has been cultivated for centuries. It belongs to the cabbage family (Brassica oleracea) along with broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts. Fun fact: there are many different varieties of kale including Lacinato (or dinosaur) kale,Yellow stemmed,Kosmic kales which often go unrecognized!
Where Does it Come From?
The exact origins of kale are unknown but some historians can trace it back to ancient Greece and Rome where they were aware back then that it had several health benefits. During medieval times and through 17th century Europe British gentry enjoyed various forms if this vitamin-filled delicacy before later being introduced across America in mid-19th century as cattle food during grazing season.
Why Is it So Popular These Days?
Kale’s rise to popularity came from nowhere around seven years ago when food blogs started discovering its versatility blending well into so many recipes easily giving dishes an extra healthy kick whether homemade or cooked by fancy chefs in Michelin-starred restaurants alike.Previously only appearing predominantly at farmers’ markets today they remain less photogenic cousins standing tall among mescluns,micro-greens or arugulas which at first glance apparently appear more appealing,kale forms staple diets mostly due its unrivaled nutritional benefits.From high levels fiber,folic acid,to protein vitamins A,C,E equaling superpowers worth cultivating too.
Feeding your pets:
Animals need varied diet too….try incorporating some leftover kale into Fido’s dinner bowl one day and see how they like it!
What Is a Head of Kale-Plant Anatomy 101
So, what is a head of kale exactly? It may surprise you to learn that there’s no convenient answer – this veggie doesn’t actually grow in heads. Instead, kale grows as loose bunches or rosettes (think dandelions!).
A rosette refers to where leaves grow out from the base of the plant forming a circular pattern resembling architectural structures..yes even nature can be arty!
Each leaf sprouts from the main stem and can be removed by cutting with scissors or pulling off if big enough! These separate leaves are usually large and flat but sometimes crumpled too similar to wavelets on sea surfaces.
As mentioned earlier about ‘dinosaur’ kales our dinosaur-loving friends will appreciate classifying Lacinato type kales which due their rough edges creates an impression of jagged irregular marks on them giving dinosaurs alleged life-likeness portrayed in movies.Any paleontologists out here?!Fun fact: The crumbly texture when thrown onto dishes often adds attraction than smooth ones packed in supermarkets.
How Do You Choose Kale At The Grocery Store?
Choosing fresh kale isn’t always easy, but there are a few things you should look for. First,take time (if allowed) inspecting each individual leaf(checking bottom sides for bugs/pests). Look for bright green veggies with sturdy stems – avoid anything yellowed wilted looking weaklings bearing black spots.Imagine seeing jiu-jitsu spinach stands beside shall-not-be-named sugar-filled donut treats Kales bragging points include being low-calorie nutrient-dense powerhouse capable warding off diseases therefore go ahead,easily choosing made healthy lifestyle choice today-#teamkale advocates would definitely agree.’
Some types might have curly leaves while others may appear flat, which makes it imperative to look for the general healthy appearance of every leaf.
Tip: choose smaller size ones over big mature plants,bigger isn’t always better especially when it comes to your plates. Don’t forget you can store kale in a container (preferably sealed) inside the fridge drawer with paper towels helping absorb moisture allowing fresh veggies stay fresher longer!
How Do You Prepare Kale for Cooking?
Before cooking or eating, make sure to rinse and dry each leaf very well using salad spinner preferably so as not have water droplets remain after rinsing.Pro tip: Keep these large leaves intact until being done washing them; this way they keep their crisp texture and freshness!
If time is at a premium, grab pre-washed and sliced bags available in almost all grocery stores.It’s good idea quickly sautéing these greens alongside other dishes like scrambled eggs because who wants wilted mushy offerings?!
Kale is versatile enough that it can be used raw or cooked – from salads to soups! When roasting, try drizzling olive oil add sprinkle salt flakes plus garlic powder(which elevates flavor profile)-throw into oven baking tray heat at 375-390C(gas mark15/218F)for around 7-10 minutes-check regularly giving pan occasional shake till crispy chips form outta nowhere…. perfect illusion-hardly any pans necessary.
Other Things To Note:
When using whole kales detect unwanted thick stems by folding back each leave’s spine side-by-side tugging off stem along its center line Finally,you needn’t shy away from preparing kale if first timer..common wisdom says follow recipe whose essence requires loads of saucy flavors masking that chewiness-swap +replace same greens sandwich fillers/meat altering preferred recipe without much hassle.
The Nutritional Benefits
Wondering what all the fuss is about when it comes to kale? This veggie packs an impressive nutritional punch.
Kale is low in calories and fat, but high in fiber. It’s also full of vitamins and minerals – especially vitamin C (more than many citrus fruits!), Vitamin K,thiamin,niacin,vitamin B6,folate,pantothenic acid,zinc,manganese,copper among others i.e those all-important micronutrients that keeps our bodies functioning perfectly well Plus antioxidants keeping skin radiant smooth glowy.Helps keep rest heart healthy,detoxes liver thus encourages metabolism boost too-go on ‘dab’ into this leaf!
And the List Goes On:
One cup of cooked kale has more than 100% of your daily value for vitamins A and K
Kale contains beta-carotene which crucial in preventing age-related macular degeneration,a condition affecting eyesight as we grow older.
-It’s rich source calcium,in fact betterthan milk so great for vegetarians who don’t consume dairy products.
-Kale belongs to Cruciferous family plants therefore ranks highly nutritious leaves eaten today packed with cancer fighting sulforaphane
Tip: Have hard time consuming enough iron? why not blend some raw kale into smoothies.. adding a quick hand-squeeze drops lemon juice usually improves absorption.A sip away from never needing anemia support groups again!
So there you have it – everything you ever wanted to know about heads of kale (or lack thereof). From its humble origins to its current place at the top of the trendy food ladder, here’s hoping we’ve taught you something new. Whether you’re already a fan or just curious, give this nutrient-packed green a try today!
Remember: The forest was Mother Nature’s first classroom…..kale leaves are like unending notebooks full essential information improving our health one mouthful at a time get chomping!
Hey there, I’m Dane Raynor, and I’m all about sharing fascinating knowledge, news, and hot topics. I’m passionate about learning and have a knack for simplifying complex ideas. Let’s explore together!
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