Kale, queen of greens, smoothie

Kale Carrot SwirlKale, a nutrition power house, is all the rage these days. My kale-carrot smoothie makes it easy to get your fill without turning on the heat (the stovetop, I mean). Lacinato kale (aka Tuscan kale) has been in my kitchen repertoire for a few years now, well before kale was crowned queen of greens. I like the flavor, the crunchy texture, and the typically smaller, more manageable leaves compared to other kale. See photo below. I used lacinato for this smoothie, but have also used others. All are tasty, especially with a splash of seasoned rice vinegar. Yes, rice vinegar! It’s mild and perfect for this smoothie. So there’s no cutting board or knife or any utensils to get out — just your blender.
Seems I’m using my blender more often than my food processor in recent years. So they’ve swapped places on my kitchen counter. Check back in the next few weeks for other easy ways to get your fill of nutritious greens (a spinach sauce, for example) using your blender and a simple splash of seasoned rice vinegar for a tangy kick.
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Tangy Kale Carrot Swirl

Makes 1-3/4 cups

2 cups packed, torn kale leaves
1-1/2 cups carrot juice
1 Tbsp. seasoned rice vinegar (try Nakano mango or citrus flavor, or “original”)    

Rinse kale thoroughly before tearing. Combine ingredients in blender container. Cover and blend on low speed at first, then high speed until smooth.
Variation: Add one small, pitted apricot or nectarine.

Nutrition (without fruit):  220 calories, 1g fat, (0g sat fat), 0mg cholesterol, 7g protein, 45g carbohydrate, 390mg sodium, 5g fiber
                                                               Recipe and photos by Rita Held

lacinato kale
lacinato kale




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