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Food & Travel

Crostini with black kale

May 19, 2010

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Serves 4

Tuscan cooking is famous for simple dishes that let the flavor of simple ingredients shine. This black kale on crusty toasts is one of them. Also called dinosaur kale or lacinto kale, black kale is abundant in the region. Cook it until tender, then chop it coarsely, arrange it on the bread, and sprinkle with olive oil.

1 bunch black kale
Salt, to taste
1 small piece Parmesan rind (about 2-by-2-inches)
1 loaf crusty bread, cut into 1-inch-thick slices
Olive oil (for sprinkling)
1 clove garlic, halved
Black pepper or crushed red pepper, to taste

1. Trim about 1 inch of the thick stalk off the ends of the kale. If the stalks are too long to fit in your pot, cut them in half. Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Add the Parmesan rind and kale. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until the greens and stems are tender.

2. Drain the kale into a colander and rinse with cold water. Squeeze the kale in your hands to remove the excess moisture. Chop it coarsely.

3. Toast the bread until golden. Arrange the bread on a platter and sprinkle with olive oil. Rub the cut side of the garlic on the bread. Add a small mound of kale, then black or red pepper. Finish with more oil.

Adapted from Antoinette Mazzaglia