Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Chickpea-Kale Stew with Chorizo
I had a whole, long post typed out catching up from the last time I posted, and my computer just ate it. Gone. So, out of sheer laziness, I am picking up with tonight. Sorry about the lack of catch up.
Lately, I've been inundated with greens from my CSA. The list of items I am getting is long, but most of them fall into the same category--leafy greens. Now, I might get kicked out of the kind-of-crunchy club for saying this, but I don't like dark leafy greens. I'm sorry. I just don't. I love spinach. I've learned to like chard, but it has taken work. Kale? Escarole? Collards? They kind of make my stomach turn.
I recognize that early in the growing season--spring and early summer up here in New Hampshire--are the time for greens. I've read Animal Vegetable Miracle, and I know what the vegetannual looks like. I know leaves come first. I wish I could feel a burst of excitment when I see piles of greens on my table after our pick up at the CSA. But, I don't. All I see is a bump in the road that I have to pass on the way to my favorites--the summer squash and zucchini and tomatoes and carrots and potatoes and basil.
Bump in the road or not, the greens have to be consumed. I cannot stand by and let a farmer's hard work go to waste--especially not a farmer I have to look in the eye the next time I pick up my share. And so the hunt is on. I need to find recipes that incorporate greens without making me gag.
I was shocked. I found one tonight. Not only did it not make me gag, but I liked it. I mean, really, actually liked it. The recipe is for Chickpea-Kale Stew with Chorizo, originally from the December 2007 issue of Cooking Light. I used chorizo that is made at a local butcher out of happy pigs (well, probably not happy anymore, but they lived happy, healthy, uncaged lives). I also used canned chickpeas, because that was just easier for my time schedule. If you make this recipe, do not leave out the lemon wedges. They give the whole stew a new spin and bring everything together. Ultimately, it was the lemon that made the kale--dare I say it?--taste good to me.
Overall, I've learned two valuable lessons tonight. Next time I'm looking for a kale recipe, look for one that incorporates lemon juice. They seem to go well together. The other lesson is one that I probably knew before, but kale made me doubt. If I look hard enough for a good recipe, and keep trying without giving up, I can learn to like any vegetable in at least one application. Thank you, Cooking Light, for finding the key to kale for me.