My friends, it is an amazing day here on the blog. I am in Israel and I just made a dish with kale! For those of you who don’t live here and wonder why my panties are on fire over a green vegetable, I give you my tale of unexpected immigrant woe:
The Hebrew label says kale is an “Explosion of Health”! Everything has to “explode” here, ya know? Then under that it says “Like this, you have never had before on your plate!”
Story: Before I moved to Israel 6 years ago, I was deep into a heavy kale-dependency habit. At will, I would stroll on down to the Stop N’ Shop, go over to the massive pile of dark green vegetation that most people overlooked, and take whatever I wanted, however much I wanted. Sometimes people would ask me what kale was and how you eat it. The Kale Revolution had not yet hit suburban NY.
I had so much kale at my fingertips that I had no qualms about using an entire bunch everyday in my fresh Green Lemonade juice.
It never occurred to me that my supply would be anything less than endless.
Prior to making aliyah (moving to Israel), potential olim (immigrants) are schooled on many immigration-related subjects by shlichim (the case workers who help facilitate all aspects of this difficult move). Our shaliach helped us understand the Israeli school system; what documents we would need to have notarized and translated; our mortgage benefits; where to learn Hebrew; how much tax we would have to pay on the items in our 20′ foot shipping container, etc, etc.
But the lack of kale in Israel? Nope, no mention. Also no mention of the years I would hereto fore be spending without fresh berries, fresh pineapple, fresh young coconut, frozen fruits, Kashi cereal, Cliff bars, and several other pre-aliyah favorites I would hence forth have to live without.
Honestly, there have been days over the past few years, when I have thought, ”If I had known there wouldn’t be raspberries, I probably wouldn’t have come.”
But slowly, slowly the Israeli food market is expanding. Everything I have pined for has eventually come or I’ve discovered I can order it online. I have actually ordered Kashi Go-Lean and Cliff bars from overseas and then rationed them out in tiny increments to my kids under strict 24-hour surveillance.
A year after arriving, I heard a rumor of kale being grown at a nearby farm. Sometimes we would go there and they would pick it fresh from the fields. I was in heaven. But the season was short and the place was not convenient for me to get to. Then CSA’s began to spring up and I heard my friends’ reports of kale being delivered to their door! I knew the grocery store was not far behind.
So when a friend emailed me yesterday with the words “I just got kale at shufersol” (a major grocery store chain), I called my husband, who had the car, and bade him not return home without my leaves!
He delivered. My man.
This recipe is actually for Kale Chips. But one night Sivan, editor and chief over at The Vegan Woman, served the sauce from this recipe on raw kale as a dressing and I wanted to sneak off to the bathroom with the bowl so I could eat it all without sharing. That good. I have had the recipe bookmarked for that fateful future day I would eventually have kale of my own.
The future has arrived.
The original recipe comes from Healthy Happy Life: http://kblog.lunchboxbunch.com/2011/08/cheezy-spicy-kale-chips-vegan.html I made changes for ease and ingredient availability.
- 1 large bunch kale, de-stemmed and ripped into small pieces
- juice of half a lemon
- 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 large red pepper or tomato
- 1 hot pepper or 1 tsp schug
- 3/4 cup raw cashews, soaked for a couple of hours and drained
- 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
- 2 Tbsp tahini
- 1 tsp maple syrup or sweetener of your choice
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- dash sea salt
- dash garlic powder
- Wash kale, remove stems and tear into bite-sized pieces.
- Place all other ingredients in the blender and blend until smooth.
- Put kale in a bowl and pour sauce over the top.
- With your hands, massage and mix the sauce well into the kale leaves.
- Let sit in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before serving.