Friday, January 7, 2011

Cavolo Nero

Cavolo Nero, cooking.

It just sounds, delicious, doesn't it? Say it out loud:

Cavolo Nero.

Black kale.

So fancy! And so easy to cook. I made it with my friend Jen, straight out of Suzanne Goin's Lucques cookbook, and I'll never deviate from her recipe - it is perfection. It's really just olive oil-braised kale... but richly seasoned with fresh rosemary and black pepper, and spiked with chilies d'Arbol.  It's unlike anything I've ever had. It's taken my love affair with kale to a whole new level.

Make it as a side dish. Toss with with pasta. Pair it with eggs. Serve it on bread with a tangy cheese. However you serve it, it will make kale disciples out of even the most ardent kale-haters (see: Hazel).

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 40 mins
Number of Ingredients: 6

2 bunches dinosaur kale, trimmed from stalks
1 cup olive oil
1 sprig rosemary
2 chiles d'Arbol, crumbled (I found them in the Mexican spice area of Safeway)
1 cup (about 1 medium) onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup garlic, thinly sliced

Set a large pot of water to boil.

Trim the kale from the woody stalks and rinse them well. When the water boils, blanch the kale until just limp, about 60 seconds, and remove to towels to dry.

In in a large pot or Dutch oven, heat 1/2 cup of the oil with the rosemary sprig and chilies, allowing them to sizzle for about a minute. Turned the heat to medium/low and add the onion. Season with salt and pepper and cook for a couple of minutes, until it begins to soften, then add the garlic. Cook gently until the onion starts to color slightly, 5-7 minutes. Add the kale and 2 or 3 more tablespoons of olive oil and stir to coat. Season liberally with salt and pepper.

Turn heat to low and, stirring often, cook approximately 30 minutes, until the kale begins to darken and get crisp at the edges. (To achieve crisping, Suzanne Goin recommends that you alternately turn the heat way up, so the kale sizzles, then back down again, so it braises.)

Check for seasoning again, then devour, then write to me to tell me how much you love this dish. I dare you not to love it.

Cavolo Nero, cooked.

1 comment:

  1. ha! your mom still has my cookbook so i was looking for this recipe and found our dinner!!!!!! lol, thanks babe. cooking it for a hot man :)