Prepare the toppings first so they are ready to top the kale while it is hot out of the pan. The heat from the kale warms these flavorful toppings. A lovely option is to toss the kale with the cheese and garlic for a more even distribution of the cheese and the garlic. Add the hazelnuts on top for a picture perfect presentation. Be confident, any of the kale varieties will be great in this recipe. This pairs well with roasted butternut squash.
Kale and Blue Topped with Hazelnuts
- Prep time
- 30 minutes
- Cook time
- 20 minutes
- Total time
- 50 minutes
- Milk, Tree Nuts
- Diabetic, Vegetarian
- Meal type
- Side Dish
- Serve Hot
- 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 3 cloves Slivers of Garlic
- 6 cups Chopped Kale
- 3 tablespoons Blue Cheese
- 1/2 cup Toasted Hazelnuts (Coarsely chopped)
- 1-3 pinch Salt
- Toppings Preparation
- Step 1
- Toast the hazelnuts on a baking pan for 10 to 15 minutes in a 325 degree (preheated) oven. Roll the nuts into a kitchen towel. Wrap them up to steam for 1 minute and then use the towel to encourage most of the skins to come off. Discard the skins. I like to do this step right after I buy the hazelnuts or at least a day before serving them. They store well refrigerated, in a glass jar with a tight fitting lid..
- Step 2
Cut the garlic cloves in thin slices or slivers, your choice! Saute in a teaspoon of olive oil stirring frequently until soft and lightly browned. Set aside
- Step 3
- Crumble the blue cheese with a fork. Crumbles the size of peas are good for this purpose. Set aside until the hot kale is ready to serve.
- Cooking the Kale and putting it all together
- Step 4
Trim and discard tough kale stem ends and any discolored areas. Wash kale by swishing it in a cool water bath shaking the excess water off. If you wish, remove the stems by pulling the leaf from the stem with your hand. Hold the stem in one hand and pull down with the other to separate the leaf from the stem. It is easier than one might imagine! Cut stems in small pieces of a 1/2″ or less, and cut the leaves into larger chunks. Alternately, I often just cut the part of the kale with the thick stem part thinner than I cut the top part of the leaf.
- Step 5
Heat the olive oil in a pan over medium heat. I use my largest cast iron skillet. Add the stem part of the kale first, so it gets a bit longer to cook. Stir for a minute. Add the rest of the kale and stir to saute. Next add a tablespoon or two of water. Turn the heat to medium low and cover the pan with a lid. Simmer for about 5 minutes or until done. The water may have cooked away, if not, drain the water off and salt to taste.
- Step 6
- Use tongs to move the kale to a warmed serving dish and pile it tall if you like. Top first with the garlic, then the blue cheese, and finally with the toasted hazelnuts. As an alternate method, one could stir the blue cheese and garlic into the kale while it is still in the pan. Then add the hazelnuts as a topping. I like the first methods when I have guests who will want to pick around the blue cheese. All the more remains for the big fans of the “blue”