Every time I walk inside the Food Co-Op, I peruse the colorful array of fruits and vegetables. I’ve been eyeing Lacinato or “dinosaur kale” for a while now and considering ways to cook with it.
(Disclaimer: dinosaur transformation is not a side effect of consuming dinosaur kale. However, encouraging your child to “rawr” like a dinosaur while eating Lacinato may entice them to want seconds!)
My attraction to the vegetable was simply the name “dinosaur kale”. But it is also just a really cool looking green. The leaves somewhat resemble fern, spinach, and curly kale all at once. The Jurassic-style vegetable is pretty interesting and tastes phenomenal sautéed in this recipe! Packed with vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin K, Vitamin C, Potassium, Folate, and Calcium, this type of kale does not taste best raw. Preparing sautéed or juiced Lacinato will likely taste the best while adding tons of nutrients to your meal!
After this recipe, I will definitely be eating more dinosaur kale in the future. I sautéed the kale in a blend of garlic and ginger and paired it with roasted mustard-glazed red potatoes. I loved how much flavor was packed into this dish.
- About 4 cups Lacinato kale, chopped
- 1 T. Olive Oil
- 2 cloves Ginger, minced
- 1-2 cloves Garlic, minced
- 1 tsp. fresh orange peel, grated
- ¼ tsp. cayenne
- About 1 lb. red potatoes, halved if small, or bite-size chunks
- 1 T. Dijon mustard
- 2 T. olive oil
- 2 tsp. honey
- ½ tsp. black pepper
- ½ tsp. salt
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees, and place cut potatoes on greased baking sheet. Combine the glaze ingredients and toss the potatoes until thoroughly coated. Place in preheated oven and toss the potatoes every 5 minutes while roasting so the potatoes can absorb the most flavor! The potatoes will roast for about 20 minutes or until they are at the tenderness you like. The honey in the glaze allowed for some great caramelization on the potatoes, and the Dijon flavor complemented the ginger kale very well.
While the potatoes are roasting, chop the dinosaur kale horizontally or in julienne style of long-thin strips. Heat a tablespoon or two of olive oil in a sauté pan, and add the minced ginger and garlic. Allow the ginger and garlic to develop their flavor in the oil for about 3 minutes, and proceed to add the kale. Don’t worry if the kale is almost spilling out of the pan; leafy greens like kale cook down to about half their volume after sautéing. I found that using tongs instead of a spatula or spoon was best to mix the kale around because this particular kale is so thick. Once the kale has cooked down a bit, add the cayenne and orange peel. Allow the kale to cook further until the texture is no longer crunchy.
Once the potatoes are crisp, I assembled a few over the kale and garnished with a bit of extra orange peel. Yum! The tastes and textures complemented each other perfectly and created a nice chew. The pizazz of ginger and Dijon mustard were a great match and made this highly nutritious dish come together.
Try this recipe out for yourself or develop your own flavor profile to complement Dinosaur Kale.
Madeleine is a junior Dietetics student at James Madison University. Her interests include community nutrition and sustainable food systems. She enjoys experimenting with whole foods and preservation techniques, as well as exploring ways to educate people on adequate nutrition. Madeleine also enjoys the outdoors, running, and swim coaching children in the summertime. She is actively involved with the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank and the JMU Student Government. After graduation from JMU, Madeleine hopes to pursue a dietetic internship, obtain the Registered Dietitian credential, and educate children and families on the affordability, accessibility and importance of fresh, whole foods.