A harvest! I have a harvest!. This is it:
As you can see, it's a decent 2-person serving of Cavolo Nero. I have been quite keen to pick this for some time now, because the plants are beginning to produce flower-heads, so their energy will no longer go into producing leaves. As it happens, the leaves I have harvested this time are perhaps the best ones of all because they are quite small (6 - 8 inches in length) and the tough white midribs are not very big. We may even be able to get away without stripping the green parts off the ribs.
The kale looks nicer when brought into the kitchen. It is too gloomy outside at present to get decent pictures.
This Cavolo Nero will be made into a variation of one of our favourites kale dishes (which I have written about several times previously!) - pasta in a creamy, garlicky sauce, with the kale stirred in right at the end. On this occasion the dish will be enhanced by the addition of some smoked bacon lardons that Jane brought back from France. The type we like are called "allumettes" (matches) because they are cut very finely:
I had to look up what the word "hetre" means (as in "Fumage traditionelle, au bois de hetre"). It means Beech - in other words the wood used for smoking these lardons is Beech-wood. Yes, I know you can buy smoked lardons in British supermarkets, but somehow I think they are not quite as good as these Herta ones from France...
Here we see it served as an accompaniment to cold chicken-breast, "Bubble and Squeak" and home-made tomato ketchup. Delicious!