Kale made an appearance in my CSA Box #2. A fellow CSA subscriber had mentioned to me that his wife made dark beer braised kale with bacon. That sounds like a winner right there! I looked around online and couldn't find such recipe. So I found a couple of basic recipes for inspiration then just winged the rest. The result was not only beautiful but it was delicious.
Beer Braised Kale with Bacon
Adapted from this recipe from Food & Wine Magazine and this one from Epicurious.
- 1/2 lb. of bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
- 4 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
- Optional: Half of a small onion or one large shallot, diced.
- 1 cup chicken stock, broth, or just water
- 1 bottle dark beer. I used Red Trolley Ale.
- 3 pounds kale, stems and inner ribs discarded, leaves coarsely chopped
- A splash of apple cider vinegar
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
1. Cook bacon in a large pot until crisp, then transfer the bacon to paper towels to drain.
2. Pour off and all but 3 tablespoons fat from pot, then cook garlic (and onion/shallot) in remaining fat over moderately low heat.
3. Add kale and cook until wilted and bright green. Add beer and water/stock and simmer, partially covered, until just tender, 6-8 minutes.
4. Remove the lid, and add bacon. Cook until the liquid has evaporated, about 3-5 minutes longer.
5. Season with salt and pepper and a splash of apple cider vinegar to taste.
Note: You can go longer with braising if you don't care much of kale's fibrous texture. It's up to you. I like it fine, just done. On the other hand, Brandon didn't want anything to do with it at this state. "It was like chewing on leaves!" he said. I guess this is one of the recipes I should aim to always overcook. LOL