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Are there any possible uses for kale stems other than compost?

asked by Felicia M over 4 years ago

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17 answers 4471 views
First We Eat
added over 4 years ago

You could probably try a vegetable soup stock if you have any other vegetable lying around to add to it!

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Felicia M
added over 4 years ago

Wouldn't that make the soup base extremely kale-y though. I usually have tons of these stems lying around.

Eliz.
added over 4 years ago

If you taste a raw stem, you'll notice it's pretty sweet. I hesitated before using any in a vegetable stock because we're told that members of brassica family are too assertive for such use. However, while I imagine broccoli, cauliflower or anything cabbagy would be unpleasant--sniff the air after over-cooking and you'll see why--kale does not overpower. I wouldn't use purple stems for a light-colored soup, but I was pleased with a stock made with tough kale stems tossed in with more typical fresh ingredients, and odds and ends I save in the freezer for this purpose.

claire miller
added over 4 years ago

I do the above, as well as pickling them. You can also chop them up in a food processor to break up their tough fibers and ferment them in the style of kimchee.

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ChefJune
ChefJune

June is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added over 4 years ago

I'd think they could be successfully braised, the way the French to with Swiss Chard stems.

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Eliz.
added over 4 years ago

Chard stems resemble cardoons or limp celery; they are broad and not as dense. They soften as quickly as onion. Kale stems, not so much. Vitamix owners could follow Lindsay-Jean's recommendation easily.

Lindsay-Jean Hard
Lindsay-Jean Hard

former Community Editor

added over 4 years ago

Pesto! http://www.loveandlemons.com/2013/10/21/kale-stem-pesto/

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Felicia M
added over 4 years ago

Is there a special trick to making it? I once tried to make soup purée with kale stems but it was just too fibrous to make it work. I was using an immersion blender though...

First We Eat
added over 4 years ago

If you add some other vegetables to the stock, I don't think kale stems would make the stock too Kale-y! I suppose it depends on your taste, I think it could make a really nice base for a lot of soup recipes!

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amy
amy
added over 4 years ago

My wire fox eats them as snacks!

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Tomina
added over 4 years ago

Totally random, but the first answer that came to mind was to tie them together and use them as a whip. (sorry)

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lisina
added over 4 years ago

i add them to juice and smoothies.

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magpiebaker
added over 4 years ago

The Zuni Cafe Cookbook suggests turning chard stems into chard fries by dipping in egg, flour, egg, bread crumbs, refrigerating, and then frying at 365. Not sure if this would work for kale, but it might be worth a shot. Otherwise, I use them to make veggie stock.

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Felicia M
added over 4 years ago

Chard stems are way softer than kale but it's an interesting suggestion. Thanks!

MaddyBelle
added over 4 years ago

You could always juice them or throw them into a smoothie! I also sometimes eat them dipped in humus like celery stalks but you probably have to be really into kale to enjoy that.

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mainecook61
added over 4 years ago

Chickens would appreciate them.

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