August 22, 2012

Beer Braised Kale with Bacon

The fun part of getting a different Community Supported Agricultural farm box every other week is that I don't know what's in the box.  Pretty much this is me on my way to pick up the box from Whole Foods.

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

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


kellypea said...

Holy COW. I have to try this. It's probably the only way I haven't tried kale. I'll have to spring it on the hubster then have him try to figure out what. that. flavor. is. :D

Beth H said...

I made this last night and it was absolutely delicious! I didn't have any beer, so I just used beef broth and I used mixed baby kale instead of regular kale. This is now my go to kale recipe. I can't wait to eat the leftovers tonight! Thank you for posting!!!