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Pork, White Bean and Kale Stew

February 1, 2010 | One Dish Meals, Soup

Having spent way too long pulling together all of my business expenses and record keeping at the end of the year, I’ve vowed to do it each month. Part of that process yesterday included putting away several new cookbooks that have stacked up on my desk. Among them, one about eating healthy in season produced by Kaiser Permanente.They had a version of this pork stew, but it used fresh tomatoes, chicken stock, and was more like a soup. I wanted something heartier, but still healthy, so adapted the recipe to suit my needs.Start with the ingredients – pork (I used blade steak, which I’ve never purchased but that came as part of the half hog I purchased from my farm this summer and it was really tender), onions, garlic, tomatoes, kale, stock, white beans, paprika, cayenne pepper. I didn’t actually use that can of chicken stock, but instead created a base with Better Than Bouillion in the beef variety which really enriched this dish.Kale is really a miracle food – it’s always high on those list of things that are really great for you – and I like it better in soups and stews because it holds its shape better and doesn’t turn mushy like baby spinach would. You need to strip the leaves from the tough stalks (throw them away or save for vegetable stock) then roughly chop the kale.Trim off all the obvious fat (and any bones if the cut you are using has them like my blade steaks did), but leave just a bit for flavor, then toss it into a hot pot with some extra virgin olive oil.At this point I veered pretty far from the Kaiser recipe in that they had you cooking each ingredient separately, removing it, then cooking another. Who has the time or patience?! I tossed the paprika, a little salt and pepper, and some cayenne pepper in with the meat when it was partially browned. The I just kept adding – onions, garlic, tomatoes, stock……and finally the kale. I had the stove on high at this point and kept pushing the kale into the mix until it began to soften up a bit, then covered the pot, reduced the heat, and let it simmer for about 15 minutes. Add the beans at the very end and simmer just long enough to heat them through.

Pork, White Bean and Kale Stew
Serves 6-8

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 pounds pork, cubed
2 teaspoons paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or more if needed
2 large onions, diced
8 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup white wine, optional
4 cups beef stock
4 cups diced tomatoes, with juice
10 cups kale, leaves only, chopped
2 cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
salt and pepper, to taste
Parmesan cheese, optional, for topping

Heat oil in a large heavy pot over medium high heat. Add pork and cook until lightly browned. Add paprika and cayenne and continue to cook, stirring, for about 2 minutes. Add onions and garlic and cook until slightly soft. Add wine to deglaze pan, the stock, tomatoes and kale, stirring until kale begins to soften enough that it can be submerged in the cooking liquid. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes. Add beans and simmer for a couple more minutes to heat through. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve topped with a little Parmesan cheese if desired.


3 Responses | TrackBack URL | Comments Feed

  1. Hi there, thanks very much for that. I was trying to find a meaty stew recipe to get me through the christmas month, and this seems just what I wanted. I found a whole stew recipes site here too that seems to have tons of good stuff, maybe your readers can get some more inspiration there. Anyway, thanks, I will bookmark and read more another time 😉


  2. Just made this recipe tonight. I added carrots and a little thai garlic chili paste and dill seed. It was delicious. Very tasty and hearty. perfect well-rounded full meal in one course. thanks for recipe


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