Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Kale Recipes

Posted by Emily

I really, REALLY love kale. It’s so healthy and something easy to have on hand to chop up and throw in smoothies, homemade soups or salads. Kale chips are all the rage right now and I’ve wanted to try making them, but I haven’t gotten around to it yet. And this would have been the perfect opportunity, BUT I got a pasta attachment for my Kitchen Aid for Christmas, so I really wanted to incorporate this secret ingredient into homemade pasta! Plus I made a few other recipes (below) and didn’t want to be a complete kale recipe hog! The “chips” will be on my agenda for another time.

And I don’t know about the rest of you, but Pinterest is a gold mine for these secret ingredient challenges. Type “penne” or “kale” into the search box and next thing you know, you’ve wasted 30 minutes scrolling and drooling! And anyone who is following me probably already got the hint that either kale or quinoa was going to be the big secret ingredient for February.

Here are the three kale recipes I’ve made this month. And even if you don’t have a pasta maker, you can keep reading, because ravioli is easy to make with wonton wrappers. Plus there are two more super easy kale recipes below. Promise.


This pesto is pretty similar to Jolie’s kale butter, but of course I found a recipe that incorporates cheese! 

Homemade Kale Pasta 
Adapted from Jillian’s Kitchen

Serves 4 (I made a double batch)

 ¾ Cup Fresh Kale – de-stemmed and Chopped
1.5 Cup Flour (I used King Arthur Pasta Flour)
1 Egg
1tsp Olive Oil
3TBSP Water
1/4tsp Salt
Additional Flour for rolling/storing.

Rinse and dry the kale, then place in a food processor and mix until very finely chopped. Mix the kale with the flour until evenly mixed, add the egg, olive oil, salt and water and mix until evenly incorporated.

Gently form the dough into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap that you have rubbed a little bit of oil on. Put in the refrigerator and let it sit for 2 hours. Make ravioli filling (recipe below) while the pasta is resting.

Once the dough has had a chance to rest, remove it from the refrigerator and cut it into 4 equal sections. Make each section into its own flat disc and run it through your pasta roller on the thickest setting, fold the dough in half and run it through again, keep doing this until the pasta has stretched to the width of the pasta roller.

Now move the rollers so it is on the next setting and run the pasta through once or twice. Continue this process of stretching the dough and thinning it out moving the rollers closer together one step at a time, until you have a desired thickness for ravioli.

Butternut Squash and Italian Sausage Ravioli Filling 
Adapted from Haute Apple Pie

1 cup pureed butternut squash
1/4 cup NF Greek Yogurt (I was going to use mascarpone, but had to go to plan B when there wasn’t any in my fridge)
2-3 tablespoons fresh grated Parmesan plus more to grate or shave on the final dish
dash of nutmeg
1 recipe kale pasta dough or 1 package wonton wrappers
Amaretti cookies, crushed
1 lb. Italian Sausage
1 onion, chopped.

Preheat oven to 400.

Toss the squash with olive oil and roast for 30 minutes. Puree the squash with the Greek yogurt and Parmesan cheese. Mix in a tiny bit of nutmeg and then place in the refrigerator to allow it to cool down.

Cook the onion until soft. Add the sausage, break into small bits and cook until done. Mix the sausage with the butternut squash puree.

Put a dallop of the squash/sausage mixture on the pasta sheets about 3 inches a part.
Top with another pasta sheet and cut with a ravioli cutter (they’re nice because they crimp the dough together) or a biscuit cutter or water glass (if you use this method, you may need to make an egg wash to seal the pasta or wonton wrappers).

Gently drop into boiling water and cook for about 3 minute or until they float. Serve topped with kale pesto, crumbled amaretti cookies and freshly grated Parmesean cheese.

Kale and Toasted Walnut Pesto
From TasteSpotting the blog

You can make this pesto with plain (raw) walnuts, but toasting them gives them a little extra flavor that can hang with the slightly more intense (and bitter) taste of kale.

Makes about 1 cup

½ cup plain/raw walnuts, roughly chopped
1 garlic clove, smashed
about 3 cups chopped kale
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ – 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Heat a frying pan over medium heat. Add walnuts and stir constantly (or gently shake pan) until toasted, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let the walnuts cool.

Pulse garlic clove ion food processor until it is chopped finely, about 30 seconds. Add kale, toasted walnuts and Parmesan cheese and pulse until chopped. You may have to stop the food processor, open the top, and push the kale down toward the blades. With the food processor running on low, add olive oil in a steady stream until you get the consistency you want. Season to taste with salt and pepper (we used about 1½ teaspoons salt, ½ teaspoon black pepper).


Yes, I’m on a squash/kale kick. The orange squash and bright green kale just look so good together!

Butternut Squash
Kale, washed, stems removed
Olive Oil
Rosemary or other fresh herbs
Brown sugar, honey or agave syrup Salt and Pepper

Preheat oven to 400.

Chop the butternut squash (or buy pre-peeled and chopped from Costco!), I leave the peel on and slice in my Cuisinart. Toss with olive oil, rosemary, salt, pepper and a little brown sugar. Roast on a cookie sheet in the oven for about 30 minutes.

Five minutes before the squash is done, sauté the chopped kale in a pan with a little sesame oil (or your favorite kind). Mix the roasted squash in and serve!


Salad Ingredients:
Kale (remove stems) and chopped
Red Onion, sliced thin (Amber, you can leave this out!)
Peanuts (I used toffee peanuts)

Dressing ingredients (I wouldn’t be too exact here, just blend up whatever ingredients you have on hand):

1/2 cup orange juice and grated rind from one orange
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 T. peanut butter
 2 T. almond butter
1 t. soy sauce
1/4 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled
1/4 clove garlic
¼ cup kimchee

Blend all ingredients in a high power blender until smooth. Toss kale with sliced red onions, peanuts and dressing.

Since we now know kale is a powerhouse super food, Missy and I have been joking that we’re going to start sneaking kale into everything we eat. Our husband’s are already rolling their eyes! Print Friendly and PDF Pin It


  1. Mmmmmmm... all three of these sound delicious! A nice ravioli w/ a pesto couldn't be more perfect for a winter dish! Love your post, Em!!

  2. You always continue to amaze me. You are always so industrious and creative when it come to food.

  3. Emily, you are crazy insane! I am beyond impressed. Yum.

  4. We may have been the only household on Super Bowl Sunday to have a kale-inspired spread of food. I'm so happy I got to taste 2 out of 3. I'm actually still regretting I didn't have more of the peanut salad, it was soooo good!