Monday, 11 April 2011

K is for... Kai choi and crispy baked kale

I've always loved greens, even as a child, but if you aren't quite as enamoured of these leafy lovelies, have a go at oven baking them. My K night guests thought the kale had been deep fried and assumed it was deep fried seaweed, like you get in Chinese restaurants (which isn't seaweed at all - it's usually cabbage or pak choi). They were thrilled to discover how healthy it was and even more thrilled that it didn't taste healthy at all! The kai choi was simply stir fried with a little chilli, soy and garlic.

Kai choi

2 heads of kai choi, trimmed, chopped and washed
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped
A glug of sunflower oil
A drizzle of sesame oil
A dash of soy sauce

Simply heat the sunflower oil in a wok and chuck in the kai choi, garlic and chilli and stir fry for about 4 minutes. Season with soy sauce and drizzle over a little sesame oil. Toss the kai choi so it is all coated and serve.

Crispy kale

A large bag of kale, hard stems removed
A drizzle of sesame oil
A tbsp mirin
1tsp salt

Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C Fan)

Wash the kale thoroughly and dry it in a salad spinner if you have one. Ideally the kale should be completely dry before baking. Toss the kale in the oil and mirin until nicely coated and pop it into the oven to bake for 10 minutes, toss the kale around and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes or until crisp but still a bright and inviting forest green. Toss the kale in salt and it's ready to serve. Don't be tempted to put the salt on before it goes in the oven - your kale will be soggy, not crisp.

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