I had some kale as a part of my CSA farm share from Tantre Farms. In fact, I have more greens stuffed in my refrigerator than I know what to do with, and I need to use them by Saturday, when I pick up my next share of the harvest. But back to the kale — I knew I needed to use it soon or lose it.
Since I'm splitting the share with a friend, I didn't have a lot of kale, so I was worried that any recipe would require more than I had. I turned to Madhur Jaffrey's Madhur Jaffrey's World of the East Vegetarian Cooking, which has never let me down, and found one kale recipe: Cado Verde. I had just enough kale to make a half-portion, which easily serves three people as a soup course and can be stretched to serve four.
This is a Portuguese recipe by way of Goa. Kale, potatoes, onion, and garlic simmered and pureed into a lovely creamy green soup and garnished with a swirl of olive oil and black pepper. Even Joe liked it, and he's not much of a fan of soup. It's an easy recipe that can be simmering on the stove while the main course is prepared.
4 medium-sized potatoes, peeled and chopped into 3/4 inch dice
1 medium-sized onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
2 cups coarsely chopped kale leaves, firmly packed
12 garlic cloves
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 Tbs fruity olive oil
ground black pepper
In a large pot, combine the potatoes, kale, garlic, onion, and salt. Add 6 cups of water and bring to a boil. Cover and lower heat to a simmer. Let cook for about 1 hour 15 minutes or until the kale is quite tender.
Puree the soup. In as many batches as necessary, pour the soup into a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. (I used a hand-held blender.) Pour soup back in the pot (if necessary) and taste for salt. Add more water if the soup seems too thick. Just before serving, add the olive oil and black pepper.
As an extra "garnish", I added a very light sprinkling of Portuguese sea salt. We really enjoyed the small bursts of flavor as the grains of sea salt melted on our tongues.