Spaghetti with Kale &Cream Sauce

Though not usually one for food fads, jumping onto a vegetable bandwagon seemed like a better option than most. While other varieties of kale family (like it’s Chinese cousin, gai-lan) have been unsuspectingly on my radar for some time, it’s the giant leafy green that’s currently having it’s moment.

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces spaghetti
  • 1 bunch kale, cut into thin length wise strips (think noodle size)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons  flour
  • 1/2 cup of milk (exact usage may vary depending on preference)
  • 2  ounces cheese of choice, shredded (I used a cheese called sottocerene al tartufo mitica, which is a cow’s milk cheese with truffles)
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Steps:

  • Cook the spaghetti according to package directions. Set aside.
  • Sauté the kale in a frying pan long enough to shrink down the leaves. Remove from pan and set aside.
  • Make a roux using the butter and flour. First melt the butter in the pan, then add the flour, mixing until incorporated. Let it sit for a few seconds, and stir in regular intervals  for about 3-5 minutes.
  • Stir in the milk, a little bit at a time, whisking continuously. The milk will thicken as the flour within the roux starts to disperse so be patient. However, if the sauce base does not appear thick enough after all the milk is gone, don’t worry.
  • Add in the shredded cheese and mix into the sauce until melted. This will cause the sauce to thicken further.
  • Once the sauce is complete, toss in the cooked spaghetti and kale into the mixure. Salt and pepper to taste.

Notes:

  • I liked how this experiment turned out, though the flavor factor may have benefited from the hint of truffles in the cheese. Regardless, it’s a good way of incorporating a healthy vegetable without really having to deal with kale’s inherent bitterness. The ingredients above can serve about 4.
  • The cheese was recommended to me by the kind folks at Whole Foods. I was looking for something light tasting as cream sauces are usually heavy.
  • Now some facts about kale! Kale is categorized in the super food category because of it’s high contents of beta carotene, vitamin K, vitamin C, and calcium.
  • The best way to cook it as to steam or a quick stir fry to retain the nutritional content. Boiling is not recommended.  You can read more about the reason why here.

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