The past couple weeks have been full of exciting discoveries. I figured out how to replace a headlight (a tricky thing with a Mazda), which completely trumped my sense of accomplishment regarding the back light replacement. Because my car repair self-efficacy is fairly low, I recruited my brother-in-law for moral support, but really, I did it myself.
Even more exciting, and more relevant here, I found out that our big cast iron skillet fits in the broiler of our oven, and I found my new favorite kale recipe. I’m guessing you’re more interested in hearing about these things.
The cast iron skillet discovery came in handy for this Bon Appetit recipe for Garlic Shrimp and White Beans. I followed the recipe almost exactly, but I do have a few comments (don’t I always?)
- I used a can of fire-roasted diced tomatoes rather than fresh chopped tomatoes. Who wants to buy fresh tomatoes in February? This did make it a little more liquidy, but this wasn’t a problem with me since I had some delicious sourdough bread to soak it up.
- Next time I think I would squeeze a little lemon juice over the shrimp just before serving. It could use a little citrus-y brightness.
- I don’t think the last two tablespoons of olive oil (drizzled on the shrimp after broiling) are really necessary. (Although if you had a citrus-infused olive oil, that might work well instead of just using lemon juice).
Generally, this was a really tasty recipe that came together easily and quickly, and reheated well for lunch.
And now, the kale. This is ridiculously simple, and not that different from how I have cooked it in the past, but this particular formula seems to be magical in creating a pile of greens that I would never tire of. It is fully endorsed by Nick, too. Thank you, Alice Waters.
Sauteed Kale with Garlic and Vinegar (from Chez Panisse Vegetables by Alice Waters; serves 4-6)
2 bunches kale (about 2 pounds), torn and washed (drained, but no need to spin dry)
3 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 or 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
Heat a large saute pan and add olive oil and just enough kale to cover the bottom of the pan. Allow these greens to wilt down before adding more. When all the kale has been added, season with salt, stir in garlic, and cover the pan. The greens will take anywhere from just a few minutes to 15 minutes to cook, depending on their maturity. When they are tender, remove the lid and allow any excess water to cook away. Turn of the heat and stir in the vinegar.
Note: The recipe mentions that most leafy greens can be cooked using this method. I’ve cooked Swiss chard like this, and indeed, it’s excellent.