This short but pointed post about the nutritional benefits of kale on Andy Bellatti's blog "Small Bites" was perfectly timed - that night we were scheduled to eat one of my all-time favorite quick-n-easy kale recipes - chicken sausage with bulgur and kale. This recipe is a pain-free way to introduce this nutrient powerhouse into your diet: It's a pretty, nutritious, one-dish meal you can serve your family in 30 minutes or fewer - what's not to love??
Sausage With Bulgur and Kale1 (12 oz.) Package fully cooked chicken sausage with roasted red pepper (I use Hans' from Whole Foods), each sausage halved lengthwise, then sliced into 1-inch thick slices 1 Bunch kale - any type (purple looks pretty) - coarsely chopped 1 t. Bottled crushed garlic (or 3-4 cloves of minced garlic) 14.5 oz. Low-sodium chicken broth (one can, or if you're trying to avoid BPA, use broth packed in aseptic packs) 1 c. Bulgur 1/2 t. Kosher salt 1/2 t. Freshly ground black pepper 1 Pint grape tomatoes, halved 2 T. Grated Romano cheese
Spray a large skillet with cooking spray and set over high heat. Add the sausage and brown, stirring frequently. Transfer to a plate. Reduce the heat and add the kale and garlic to the skillet and cook, tossing frequently, until the kale is wilted (see note below). Stir in the broth, bulgur and sausage - your liquid will not cover the mixture entirely - don't panic! Cover and bring just to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat and let the mixture stand, covered, until the liquid is absorbed and the bulgur is tender, about 5 minutes more. Fluff the mixture with a fork, stir in the tomatoes and cheese, and serve! Serves 4.
A couple of notes. If you haven't cooked kale or any other sturdy leavy green before, you need to know it's bulky. You will probably have to add 1/2 the kale to the skillet and toss it around (tongs are a great tool for this) until it wilts a bit, then add more, wilt, etc., 'til you can get it all in the pan. It's always stunning to see how much it reduces in volume.
Next - this is the second recipe I've posted with bulgur as an ingredient, and I'm thinking now that many of you might not be familiar with this nutritious and versatile grain. I grew up eating bulgur. Mostly, I think, because I'm part Lebanese. But as you can see, bulgur doesn't need to be limited to Middle-Eastern cooking. It's got much more bang-for-the-buck nutritionally than rice or couscous, and it's just as easy to prepare. For more about bulgur, click here, here and also here.