Agreed. Spinach is a healthy green. It’s yummy, too. But have you tried kale yet?
We have always been asked to have plenty of greens in our diet. If you, like us, have not ventured much beyond spinach, it’s certainly time to widen your green horizon. Of course, spinach is the most celebrated of all greens and it is supremely healthy but the usual dal palak, palak paneer, aloo palak can get painfully boring.
Here’s a dark leafy green that is suited to challenge the authority of spinach in our kitchens—kale. Greens are rich in fibre, iron and calcium, and have a special relationship with your detox organ, liver. Kale is no different but has an edge over other greens when it comes to certain micronutrients such as vitamin A, C and K.
There is 500mcg of vitamin A, 120mg of vitamin C and 704.8 mcg of vitamin K in just 100 gm kale when compared to 469 mcg, 28.1 mg and 469 mcg of vitamin A, C and K, respectively, in the same amount of spinach. Isn’t that fantastic? Well, kale has a wee bit more of calories, carbs and fat per serving too but we can forgive these minor flaws for its taste.
Kale is not a commonly seen green in Indian kitchens but its adaptable nature makes it a favourite for those who have tried it. Bengaluru-based nutritionist Shalini Manglani says kale in any form is a must-try, “it shouldn’t be had as packaged kale chips.” That would be defeating the purpose.
Earthy and rich, the flavour of kale is best be described as herbacious, with an ever so slight bitterness. It’s not your salad-kind-of-green because kale could prove to be a little difficult to digest. But it will go well with stir fries.
Other ways to prepare kale is to steam or boil it, much like spinach.
You can make pretty much any Indian green dish with kale. A kale dal would be
an interesting twist to your dinner favourite. You could pair idli or dosa with
kale sambar or prepare a dry sabzi with the leaves. Whatever you do, kale will
not disappoint you.
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