Not too long ago, I stumbled on a list of great kale recipes. I’ve been cooking my way through them, since we’ve been getting a lot of kale through our CSA,* but I have to say, this is my favorite one so far, and probably my favorite use of kale… well, ever.
* Plus I am a confirmed kale addict. Seriously. Love the stuff.
Although the original recipe would make a good side dish, I wanted to make it a meal, so I latched on to both of the review’s suggestions and served it on a bed of polenta and topped it with a poached egg. It was FAB-U-LOUS.
I can’t rave enough about this. Granted, my addition of eggs, milk, and cheese is unkind to this dish’s vegan roots, but I couldn’t help it. Just the combination of the creamy polenta, the deep garlicky flavor of the mushrooms, the slight crunch of the kale, and the perfectly poached egg over the top of it — oh my. Try this one out and you won’t be disappointed.
1 Tbs olive oil
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 large bunch kale, coarse stems removed, leaves sliced or torn into pieces
3 1/2 cups water
1 cup yellow cornmeal or polenta
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/2 cup milk
4 Tbs unsalted butter
Heat the oil and garlic over medium heat in a large skillet or sauté pan, stirring. Once the garlic begins to crackle, add the mushrooms and salt. Let them cook for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring often, until the moisture has released and the mushrooms are lightly browned.
Meanwhile, bring a large, deep pot of water to boil for the eggs,** and make the polenta. Bring 3 1/2 cups of water to boil in a medium saucepan. Salt the water generously and then gradually stir in the cornmeal. Reduce the heat to low and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring often. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter, cheese, and milk. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add the kale to the saute pan with the garlic and mushrooms, and cook, stirring, for about 10 more minutes. Add splashes of water if the pan seems dry. The kale should be crisp-tender and cooked down pretty well.
Meanwhile, poach the eggs. Salt the boiling water and turn the heat down until just simmering. Crack the eggs into individual ramekins and carefully slide them one by one into the pot. Simmer for 2 minutes, and then remove with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking.
Serve the kale and mushrooms on the bed of polenta, and top each serving with a poached egg.
** The deeper the pot, the better, since the eggs will retain their shape better. You’ll need at least 6 inches.