Monday, October 24, 2011

Greens for Dummies, Part I

There are oh so many trends in the blogworld that I jumped on and loved. Pumpkin baked goods, greek yogurt, almond butter, acorn squash...I joined some bandwagons later than others, but still, bloggers have really done a lot to expand my diet, and almost all in very, very good ways.

But there are some trends I just never caught on to.

Like kale.

Not for any specific reason, really. Mainly, it's just that I'm a habitual eater, and between broccoli, brussels sprouts, and green beans, I just didn't feel the need to extend my vegetable rotation. And I did have a raw kale salad one time when I was out (probably from Whole Foods), and I definitely did not care for that was that.

But now that I'm banned from all cruciferous veggies for the rest of this month, I've been forced to expand into kale. (And collard greens, but that's for another post.) So, how to prepare it?

Easy. Melt a little butter (I used about a teaspoon for 5-6 leaves of kale). Add a dash or two of hot sauce to the melted butter. Tear your kale off of the big stems into smaller pieces and toss in the melted butter until coated...just use your hands for this. It's much easier. Spread on parchment paper on a baking sheet and sprinkle lightly with kosher salt.

Right before I melted the butter, I preheated my oven to 415 and put the kale in as soon as it was ready - my oven had reached about 115 degrees by then. Monitor your kale pretty closely, because the line between "baked and crispy" and "burnt and crumbling" is a pretty thin one. My kale is usually done about a minute or 90 seconds after the oven reaches 415.

Tasty. This reminds me of popcorn...and also makes me realize that the only thing that's good about popcorn is that it tastes like salt and butter.

As I suspected, after a few days of eating only meat and greens, my cravings started to come in pretty forcefully. I spent a nice fat chunk of Sunday fantasizing about all of the amazing delicious foods I'm going to eat come October chips and dip. And chocolate. And a pumpkin scone or a pumpkin cinnamon roll from my freezer (or both). Oh, and nachos. God, nachos would be great. And then I drank tea and did a puzzle and tried to stop thinking about tasty snacks.

In the meantime, though, I'm so happy with how things have gone. A long time ago - ugh - I wrote about how I had been battling with a particular case that is just a complete thorn in my side. Last June, when this case put me under the attack of the stupids, I coped by faceplanting into a veggie pizza. (Observation: that pizza that I ate last June definitely didn't kill me and didn't make me obese overnight. However, it has not made that case go away. It has not made their counsel any less frustrating to deal with, and it has not made their arguments and delay tactics any less frivolous, since here I am, about 16 months later, dealing with the exact.same.argument.) Today, preparing for tomorrow's hearing made me want to punch the world in the face, but the idea of drowning my sorrows in nutritionally-questionable food did not even cross my mind.

This, my friends, is progress.

(Also, an embarrassing and true story. In law school, I did very well in my school's internal moot court competition. As in, my partner and I won the entire competition, and I snagged the "Best Oralist" award during the final argument (LOL THATS WHAT SHE SAID). I would prepare for arguments by listening to that Eminem/Dre song "Shake That Ass" on my way there. It would get me all psyched up and get me in the mindset of how I was going to destroy my a law school make-believe oral argument. I still sort of do this for real life arguments. Sigh.)

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