How to grow kale and make a kale smoothie
Andrea Bellamy |

curly kale

Every month, Heavy Petal collaborates with Willowtree — a website for those with food sensitivities who want to find their culinary bliss — to bring you a celebration of an in-season edible. I’ll tell you how to grow it; they’ll tell you how to eat it. Yay!

If you haven’t already succumbed to kale’s seductions, now is the time to try it. This hardy, healthy leafy green can be found in gardens and markets throughout the fall and winter, and the Willowtree gals recommend trying it in a smoothie.

If the idea of a kale smoothie makes your gag reflex spasm, I do understand. Until very recently, I’d be right there with you, running for the bag of refined sugar. But then I tried this recipe, and not only is it tolerable, it’s good. I especially appreciate the license I feel it’s given me to eat like crap for the rest of the day.

Kale Smoothie

Cook Time: 10 mins
Makes: 2 cups

Ingredients:

2 cups organic kale (ribs removed)
1/2 banana
1 apple (peeled & chopped)
1” piece of ginger, chopped
1/2 tsp raw organic agave syrup
1/2 cup almond milk

Method: Add all ingredients to food processor or blender; set on high and blend until smooth.

kale smoothie

How to grow kale

Kale should be a staple of every healthy-food-lover’s garden. It’s attractive, easy to grow, and frost tolerant (so makes a great winter-garden crop!). Plant in early spring and again in midsummer, harvesting outer leaves as the plants reach 4 in. (10cm) tall. Kale likes full sun and rich, fertile soil (though it will tolerate a little shade). Help it along with a nitrogen-rich organic fertilizer such as fish fertilizer. Kale will overwinter in all but the coldest climates; harvest all winter, then eat the flowers that emerge in spring. My favourite kales are ‘Lacinato’ (aka Black Tuscan, or Dinosaur kale) and ‘Red Russian.’



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