Kale Chorizo Ensalada

Spice up your life, and otherwise boring greens, with some local chorizo sausage! Apparently kale is über trendy in New York City right now...must be because it's in season! I had three amazing varieties of kale salad: warm, cold, with meat and without, and decided to try it in the test kitchen with some chorizo sausage. My husband, the brilliant chef that he is, suggested some minced, dried Turkish apricots and pecorino cheese to smooth out the flavors. The result was, well, gone in a few minutes.

That good.

If you're not into meat or cheese, try sautéing the kale with some shallots, red peppers, sun dried tomatoes, and toasted pine nuts. There are infinite ways to make kale a superstar. Let me know what you come up with. In the meantime, enjoy!

Ingredients:

1.5 bunches kale, de-stemmed and finely chopped or sliced chifonade style

1 cup chorizo sausage

2 shallots, thinly sliced

Olive oil for sautéing

½ cup dried Turkish apricots, minced

Juice of ½ an orange

Salt and pepper to taste

1/4 cup sliced or grated Pecorino Romano, or another hard-ish cheese for garnish

Paprika for garnish

Method:

Sauté onions and chorizo over medium heat

Once onions and meat are lightly browned, add the apricots

Sauté until tender (2 minutes)

Squeeze orange juice, 2 tbs. olive oil, and a dash of salt to chopped kale, and mix thoroughly

Add the kale to the pan, and gently stir in until wilted and well-combined with meat mixture (2-3 minutes)

Divide between serving bowls (2-4)

Garnish with paprika and freshly sliced or grated pecorino cheese

Benefits:

Grass Fed Beef: Research has shown that meat, eggs, and dairy products from pastured animals are much better for your health than their mega-farmed counterparts. They offer more "good" fats, and fewer "bad" fats, are richer in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals such as vitamins E, beta-carotene, and vitamin C. Plus they don't contain the added hormones and antibiotics generally found in the factory farmed variety. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Kale: This Vitamin K powerhouse is also an extremely good source of Vitamins C and A, and manganese. When steamed it has extra special cholesterol lowering properties, but is also nutritious and delicious sauteéd, baked, or eaten raw. It's also packed with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer nutrients. See here for more nutritional information and health benefits.

Olive Oil: Olive Oil is packed phytonutrients including polyphenols. Most of the polyphenols in olive oil function as both antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients in the body. When eaten in moderation, olive oil can be very beneficial to our gastrointestinal and cardiovascular health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.