I can’t remember ever liking kale. I must have had a bad experience with it when I was a kid. My mom could cook many things tremendously well, wonderfully, beautifully well, but with some vegetables, she would cook them until she was sure they were dead, then cook them longer for good measure. Take that, vegetable! I remember I hated the asparagus she made because it was a glutinous mass of gooey vegetable matter. It wasn’t until much later that I tried asparagus at a good restaurant. I confess it came with whatever delicious treat I was really after. It was lightly sauteed with a bit of garlic and it was really fantastic. I can only imagine that my negative reaction to kale was rooted in some similar childhood experience.
In any case, for the second year in a row, I’ve grown some kale, because Tuffy P likes it a lot. The last batch grew much of the winter, through the cold and the snow. After the apocalypse all that will be left alive will be the kale and the roaches to be sure. This last winter I bought us a bamboo steamer, and when this season’s batch of kale began to mature, I steamed some up for just a couple minutes, sprinkled with just a little salt. In the steamer the leaves relaxed and turned a deep beautiful green. I tried some.
As much as I hate to admit I was wrong, I’ve been wrong about kale for a really long time. It was delicious – IS delicious – really tasty with a hint of bitterness. I’ve so been missing out. I started steaming up kale for us every two or three days, simply cutting a few leaves from the plant whenever I wanted to cook some. Regardless of the frequency of my harvests, the kale plant has remained around the same size. It’s a kale miracle, or at least a kale monster. It’s got to be the fastest-growing plant in our garden, and I sure am enjoying it.