Orecchiette with Kale

I am a sucker for cookbooks and the other day I was the lucky recipient of a new one for my birthday.  Right away I had to try a recipe.  I picked one that was so easy but so delicious, I must share it here.  It is especially pertinent now that kale is the current darling of the food world.  I like kale and I do eat it on a fairly regular basis.  It became an important part of my repertoire about 5 years ago when I began studying a macrobiotic diet.  However, it is hardly the only green I eat.  I really believe in variety in my own diet.  As much nutrition as there is in kale, it isn’t the only worthwhile veggie out there.  Eat it, but include other greens in your diet as well.

For a little more info on kale, see my Peanut Sauce & Potstickers post from a few years ago:


I realize the above picture has nothing to do with the pasta recipe but it was also a birthday present and the message is such an apt reminder.

Orecchiette with Kale

adapted from  venturesome VEGAN COOKING by J.M and Michelle Hirsch

This recipe takes less than 30 minutes and serves 2-4 persons depending on portion size.

3/4 pound whole wheat orecchiette

2 tablespoons to 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2  1/2 tablespoons capers

1 tablespoon red pepper flakes

1/2 pound  kale, washed and cut into thin ribbons  (I like lacinato kale but use any type of kale.)

1/2 cup parmesan cheese (soy parmesan is called for in the original recipe)

Cook the orecchiette in a large pot of lightly salted, boiling water until tender, about 8 minutes if dry, 2-3 minutes if fresh.  (Or according to directions of the pasta maker.)  Drain and set aside.

Combine the oil, capers and red pepper flakes in a large skillet.  Over medium-high heat, sauté the capers and red pepper flakes while lightly crushing the capers with a fork.  After about 3 or 4 minutes, add the kale ribbons, reduce the heat to medium, and continue the sauté for another 3 minutes or until the kale wilts.  Add the pasta and toss thoroughly.

Add the Parmesan cheese and toss again.  Serve.

Though I didn’t have any problems, the cookbook authors suggest adding broth, more oil or water if the pasta seems dry.


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