Steamed Kale with Mushroom Medley

  • Kale (Fresh)
  • Garlic ( 1-3 cubes )
  • Shallot
  • White Button Mushrooms
  • Shitake Mushrooms
  • Portabella Mushrooms
  • Parsley (Optional)
  • Olive Oil (Optional)
  • Salt (Grey Sea Salt or White Finishing Salt)
Steaming is one of my favorite cooking techniques. It's very quick, and you can retain far more of the vitamins offered by vegetables eating them raw or steamed. Obviously, you can overcook even while steaming. But a quick steam to soften and blend flavors without browning or dulling the vegetable colors is great.

If you're not use to eating greens raw; then steaming is a great alternative.

Prep. I timed it. This entire recipe takes 15 minutes start to finish. Unless you are a slow cutter. So let's start by getting your steamer prepared and your water heated. The water should be ready to boil by the time your done cutting. Which is perfect.

Steps. You can use fresh or bagged Kale. Bagged Kale comes pre-cut so just focus on the garlic, shallots, and mushrooms. If you are using fresh. Rinse the Kale well. Removing all dirt and sand. Then cut out most of the thick stem. You'll find it easier to chew without the bulky stem.

A nice rough cut of the Kale with a butchers nice is fine. I slightly roll the bunch, then cut in quick slices about 1 1/2 in thick.

Spread the Kale on the bottom of your steamer. Not to thickly, or the bottom will get over cooked before the top is ready.

Slice the garlic and shallots, thinly and sprinkle on top of the Kale. At this point, I generally add a little pepper, salt, and parsley. Then move on to the mushrooms.

Slice the mushrooms thinly, and add over top of garlic, shallots, and Kale. Then add any remaining Kale. Cover.

Steam. If everything went to plan, the water for the steamer would have just started boiling, while you were placing the mushrooms on the mix. Once the mix is covered, steam for 3-5 minutes. 

I like the Kale on top to turn a bright green, but still retain some firmness. The bottom layer of Kale will become darker and softer. It generally takes under 5 minutes for the top Kale to turn a bright green and sweat a little.

Plate. I place in a bowl immediately after top layer of Kale hits my favorite bright green color. This allows me to toss the mix better, and I can add lemon and or Olive Oil to taste. Then plate.

Options. Adding lemon will mellow the flavor of the greens. If you're not a big fan of greens. I highly recommend. But even if you love greens, lemon can be a nice addition.
Olive Oil. Adding a teaspoon or tablespoon after plating can provide some good fats, and a nice flavor. Be careful, if you are calorie counting. But otherwise, enjoy.
Parsley. It's optional, but I've always enjoyed the contrast of the flavor between parsley and Kale.

Garlic. More or less is up to you. I love garlic, so at least two cubes are required for most things. You can also chop or mince versus slicing. Slicing brings out a slightly sweeter edge to the garlic. But mincing will make the dish more garlic-y.

Salt. If you plan to use a finishing salt, don't add salt until plated. Otherwise, a grey sea salt mixed into the steaming process should enhance flavors.

Calories. Another quick and low cal dish. 2 to 3 cups of raw Kale are about 45-60 calories. The mushroom medley even lower, since all toll, it should work out to about 1/2 to a full cup of mushrooms. So between 80-100 calories plated without Olive Oil and 160-200 calories with Olive Oil. 
Serves. 2 as a side or 1 as the main dish.