I’m a huge fan of kale. While pretty healthy (as most greens are), kale’s main benefit is that it is wonderfully useful. It can be eaten raw or cooked, but, unlike spinach, cooked kale mostly retains its shape, and raw kale doesn’t get soggy in salad dressing. I love it because it gives me a lot of options in the kitchen, so I feel comfortable buying a big bag and knowing that it won’t go to waste. In the recipe below, the kale is cooked in the leftover butter and fat from the pork chops. That probably makes it a lot less healthy, but, boy, does it taste good.
1lb pork chops
1 butternut squash, cut into cubes
1/2 yellow onion, sliced
1 bunch kale, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. In a bowl, toss the onion and squash in a little oil (just enough to cover), along with salt, pepper, and a dash of cinnamon. Spread the squash onto a baking pan and put into the oven for 40-45min until soft.
2. Combine the thyme, rosemary, and red pepper flakes with a pinch of salt and black pepper and rub onto your pork chops. Add 1tsp of butter to a pan and heat slowly until melted (you can substitute oil here if you prefer). Add the pork chops and sear on both sides until done. Cooking time may vary depending on how thick your pork chops are. Use a meat thermometer if you need to. Set aside the pork chops to rest. They should be fairly browned on each side.
3. If you need to, add another tsp of butter (or oil) to the pan, but be careful not to burn it. Then, add the garlic and kale, stirring until the kale has wilted. Be sure to scrape up any bits from the pork that stuck to the pan.
Serves 3-4. If you want to add a grain, I’d recommend cooking up some wild rice after you’ve put the squash in the oven.