Saturday, August 10, 2013

Growing Kale in Your Garden

Some of the heirloom kale varieties found in organic grocery stores may be a bit pricey, but there is a very simple solution -- grow your favorite kale in your garden!

One may have to do a bit of testing to see which kale variety one prefers and which one grows best (without any of that slight bitter taste) in your area.

Kale loves cool weather, but mine is doing great this summer --- my favorite was flowering kale, until I planted an Italian heirloom kale. I have not noticed any bitterness in our summer heat per the Italian heirloom, but have noticed a slight bitter taste (which disappears after the first frost) in my flowering kale, which is growing very fast and actually started to flower (I picked the flowers off -- the flowers look very much like the ones on related species -- the yellowish flowers on thin stems).

Each day I pick the largest leaves of the Italian heirloom, and the kale continues to grow. I know that the flowering kale will survive until almost January, 2014, under the snow and will be a welcome treat.
I do not know if the Italian heirloom will survive the winter as it is very tall and will probably not be protected by the snows.

My husband and I have a "kale" smoothie almost every evening using the "Italian" heirloom kale.
We strip the leaves from the long stem, add it to the blender set on ice-crushing, add a banana and sometimes whatever berries we might have in the house, and almond milk (my husband is allergic to
dairy), add a few ice cubes sometimes and blend to perfection -- photos to follow. Sometimes
we use bananas we have previously frozen and skip the ice.

Please share any and all recipes for kale on this blog -- keep in touch as photographs are to follow!