21 September 2007
It's still fall; the right way to eat meat
I went to the store and there was kale! It was thick juicy substantial ironmongering dinosaur kale. Plant breeders really need to start naming their new strains things like "ironmonger". The kale must come home with me! Even though there is no more room in my bag, I MUST HAVE KALE.
I bet you start out all your conversations this way!
No, but it's fall! It even still feels like fall after three days of nice weather. It's windy and cool and there are actually a bunch of big fluffy white clouds in the sky, as opposed to morning haze that gets burnt off by ten to reveal an excruciating blue sky. Real clouds!
I bought the kale and brought it home and made these.
Mashed potatoes sesame and kale!
redskin/other smallish boiling potatoes
half bunch of kale
butter/olive oil/vegan alts
milk if you have/want it
salt and pepper
First you make mashed potatoes. Put a pot of water on to boil. Chop up some potatoes so they'll cook faster. Don't peel them; the peels are great. I used about four or five potatoes for two people. When the water is boiling, add the chopped potatoes. Bring it back to a boil, then simmer with lid on until the potatoes are tender and starting to fall apart. Probably twenty minutes to a half hour should do it for small chunks. Drain and mash roughly with butter/etc, salt, and pepper.
While the potatoes are simmering, cook the kale. Start by chopping up several cloves of garlic. Warm a frying pan and sauté the garlic in olive oil and/or butter. While it's softening, wash, de-spine, and chop the kale. Cutting out the central leaf spines is really necessary if you don't want big chunks of tough, watery stalk in your finished product. You can chop the leaves into whatever size pieces you want; I made mine pretty small so they'd blend well with the potatoes. When the garlic is golden, add the kale and stir it all up. Salt and pepper a little, then cook until the kale is bright green, tender, and wilted. This should only take about five minutes.
Now it is time to mix! Dump the potatoes into the kale and stir it all up.
You can clearly stop and eat things here. Toasted sesame, however, makes things awesome and takes maybe a minute total.
Put a handful of sesame seeds in a little frying pan. Toast over medium-low for a couple minutes, tossing occasionally. When the seeds start to look the tiniest bit browned, take them off the heat and throw them into the kale and potatoes. Mix again, smoothing out potato lumps if you want.
Eat it! It is fall!
What will you eat it with?
I ate mine with the tiniest bit of veal ever: .07 of a pound. This is the way to eat meat: a big plate of vegetables with one tiny sliver of meat. I just heated my sesame seed pan up, threw in the meat, salted and peppered it, then flipped it over. Everything got barely, perfectly browned, mostly because I wasn't trying to do things like "wash dishes" in between sides. When it was done, I flipped it onto my plate of kale and potatoes, deglazed the pan with dry vermouth, and poured it over the whole business. So I had meat flavor and a little texture without actually eating very much meat at all. Yay! Delicious!
I also was like "THIS MEAL DEMANDS AN APERITIF," and poured myself a slug from the bottle of Campari. We've gotten so acclimatized to Campari that I could take a big pre-meal gulp with no effect at all besides general deliciousness. I am really glad my taste buds continue to adult-ize. Adulterate. Something.
However, having an aperitif (and calling it that, jeez!) was not really necessary. The meat also was not necessary. What else could you have with kale and potatoes for tasty fall dinner?
- squash soup, probably acorn or butternut with some sage
- some thick, dense bread such as walnut, with butter or hard cheese
- more figs ha ha
- a raw chopped salad such as the cabbage and apple one from the other day
- or say homemade apple or pear sauce
- or just apples and pears and walnuts, all mixed up.