comscore Push the envelope and swap creamed kale for spinach | Honolulu Star-Advertiser

Push the envelope and swap creamed kale for spinach


    Creamed kale made with Parmesan cheese from a recipe by Katie Workman.

I think that for most of us, to like creamed spinach is to love creamed spinach. You have to go all in if you go at all. And I love creamed spinach.

But because envelopes need the occasional pushing, I recently decided to cook up some kale with a generous amount of cream and Parmesan cheese. I know that in some circles kale is considered the king of the greens, and in others it’s considered “over.” I don’t belong to either camp, but I do love kale.

It has similar nutritional perks to spinach (not that I am selling this particular recipe as healthy), and holds up to heat with more presence. If you want, you can use baby kale in this recipe, which isn’t as tough as fully grown kale, and has no thick ribs to remove, which makes the prep easier.

This begs to be served up next to a roast chicken, a piece of seared or roasted fish, or, in the most perfect of all worlds, a juicy T-bone steak.


  • 1-1/2 pounds kale
  • 1-1/2 cups heavy cream
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

If you are using mature kale, trim the tough middle rib from the leaves, and roughly chop the leaves. If you are using baby kale, roughly chop leaves and stems. Rinse in colander.

Add the kale to boiling water and boil 4 to 5 minutes, until kale is fairly tender. Drain in colander, rinse with cold water, then use your hands to squeeze as much water as you can out of the kale.

Place cream in the same pot. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, and then lower heat to medium and continue to simmer until reduced by about 1/2, about 4 minutes.

Season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Add kale and simmer, stirring often, until cream sauce is further reduced and coats kale, about 3 minutes.

Stir in the Parmesan cheese until melted and everything is well blended. Serve hot. Serves 4 to 6.

Approximate nutritional information, per serving: 272 calories, 25 g total fat, 15 g saturated fat, 88 mg cholesterol, 332 mg sodium, 9 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 3 g sugar, 6 g protein.

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