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Heirloom Harvest: Kale - “Nero De Toscana"

This time of year is so addictive! You know, when things get beyond the sprouting point and you finally start eating food out of your garden on a regular basis...and get impatient for everything else to hurry up and grow to join it!

I've always had a love/hate relationship with growing kale, due to the tendency to attract aphids and the like, particularly back on the farm. But I've also found an Italian heirloom variety that I love taste-wise, which is the Nero De Toscana, dating back to at least the 19th century and incredibly easy to grow from seed - and to me? Far tastier than the curly stuff at the grocery store, and seems to be hardier than the other varieties to boot!

As for us, kale is something we mix in. Even though this variety is the sweetest, I've never been big on eating this plain. As with Swiss Chard and Collards, Kale in my opinion really shines as a "complementary green" - you know, a way to add color and flavor and texture to a diverse ingredient list - and yep, a way to get in your 'dark leafy greens' requirement for good health. For us, the first harvest meant chopping a bunch up for one of our favorite comfort foods, the Rainbow Buddha Bowl we eat at least a couple times a month as it's such a good 'bubble & squeak' kinda meal...and tastes like happiness!


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