Recipes for cooking kale enable you to escape age onset macular degereration; a deficiency of three phytochemicals are at the root of the most common cause of blindness in the older person; they are lutein, zeaxanthine and oleocanthal.
I find it disturbing that our various bread recipes are the most popular at Bernard Preston's site, and recipes for cooking kale languish at the very bottom; it should be the other way around, fine though our loaves are, especially because 100% wholemeal is so rich in lignans, unlike your supermarket loaf. But it's the dark green leafy vegetables that are so important in preventing cancer.
Even the most ardent lover of kale would admit that it has little flavour of its own; yet, because it is one of the richest sources of the carotenes that promote health and prevent disease, it should be eaten at least several times a week and, in fact, daily if you're a health nut and want to enjoy a long life without medication.
Kale is a the best source of lutein by a mile and has zeaxanthin too; we add extra virgin olive oil for the oleocanthal, and tomatoes for another phytochemical called a lycopene that prevents prostate cancer and generally contributes to the flavour.
We use chickpeas for protein, but you can add lima beans, or any other legume; don't let any recipe kill your creative side; make this your salad.
Add freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice, as for all salads and a few optional extra bits and pieces; garlic, chilies and a couple teaspoons of fatty fish perhaps.
Garlic has the allicin, chilies the capsaicin, limes the limonin and the fatty fish the omega-3. It's a veritable medicine chest.
And its easy to throw together in no time at all.
Recipes for cooking kale take a doubtful contender princess to the throne she richly deserves.
Gathering these ingredients together might take the longest time, but in fact we have them virtually always in our home and garden; you either eat these medicines daily, or you queue up at the pharmacy instead; take your pick.
For me, and I'm very privileged, it starts with a short walk in the Garden Cathedral, basket in hand. For two persons, I have a pretty shrewd idea of how much salad we can enjoy, so I pick perhaps a dozen fronds of three different kinds of kale. Frankly that which I see in the green grocer is usually appalling, so it comes as no surprise that most folk turn up their noses, but it's so easy to grow.
Then I'll pluck a good cupful of cherry tomatoes, a jalapeno chili, a lime or lemon, and perhaps a few leaves of sweet basil just because we love its flavour so much. Wash them all several times to get the snails and other creepy crawlies off.
Strip, or cut the leaves off the central kale stalk, and chop finely. In your serving bowl, pour the juice of half a lime over the greens. Use a spoon to dunk and smear them well.
Using a heavy glass, crush the olives forcing the pits out which go in the tumbler; don't miss any; slice the pith.
Warm a large heavy bottomed skillet on low heat, add the olive oil, garlic, jalapeno, a few slithers of lime zest and the chunk of fatty fish, and saute for a minute or two.
Toss in the sliced olives, kale and lime juice and a tablespoon of water and turn up the heat for a few minutes, with the lid on.
Add the chickpeas and tomatoes and, depending on whether you want a hot dish or a salad, heat for another couple minutes.
Serve with feta cheese, sprigs of parsley, and lime or lemon wedges to make it pretty.
Along with spinach and lettuce, kale is one of the three basic greens that should be in every garden. Dark green leafy vegetables should be the mainstay of at least two of our three meals daily.
Chickpeas are the world's most popular legume and for good reason; they are inexpensive, readily available and a wonderful source of vegetable protein.
We soak them overnight, pressure cook for thirty minutes, rinse thoroughly and freeze so they are readily available, mostly for our authentic hummus recipe, seen in a tub in the foreground; it's a wonder with any salad.
Cooking chickpeas is a breeze if you have a pressure cooker; a quarter of the price compared to cans, no salt and zero preservatives.
I confess to being neurotic about the chemicals added to our food these days. Right now I'm treating a patient with Parkinson's disease; nitrates, a common preservative, target the cells in the substantia nigra; there is no cure.
It's estimated that nearly two million Americans are needlessly blind, and many more partially sighted; all because they refuse to eat their recipes for cooking kale and other greens, and so get age-onset macular degeneration and cataracts; smoking grossly complicates the issue.
It's a complex disease with several variants but much has to do with the blood vessels that bring fresh nutrients and remove waste products from the retina; inadequate blood circulation and generalised inflammation are at the heart of this very disabling disease. That's why smoking is central to AMD.
Kale is the richest source of lutein; I'd rather enjoy my greens than have a doctor poke me in the eye with a scalpel or laser beam; what do you think? The nutritional value of kale is so important.
Researchers state that the likelihood of vision loss from age-related macular degeneration can be reduced by high dose vitamin supplementation; it's permanent; improvement once you have the disease is limited. How much better to enjoy the foods like kale, spinach, zucchini, corn and eggs on a regular basis; prevention before acquiring AMD is the only solution.
Researchers have found that over and above an inadequate blood supply to the retina of the eye, generalised inflammation in the body is a factor in macular degeneration.
The three most important ways to reduce inflammation are
Recipes for cooking kale with a little added fatty fish makes an excellent start to this step up to better health of the eyes and in fact the whole body. If a life without medication is your desire, think first of recipes for cooking kale.
Oleocanthal is another phytochemical that researchers have found given scientifically proven protection, along with lutein and zeaxanthin, against macular degeneration.
The ONLY food where you can get it is in extra virgin olive oil; nowhere else. Is it any wonder those following the Mediterranean diet are more healthy?
Refined olive oils have the oleocanthal removed because it gives a burn in the back of the throat; confirmation that this is the real McCoy, but in those demanding that all their food is smooth and sweet, it's an irritant.
Once food companies get hold of olive oil, wheat, dairy products, honey, and we could add another ten thousand, they utterly ruin it for us. Did you know that millers can describe flour as wholemeal provided they don't remove more than 40% of the wheat; that's where most of the germ and bran are to be found, the home of the lignans, vitamins, fatty acids and phytochemicals.
And they have the audacity to call it 'wholemeal'; worse, it's allowed by international law; buyer beware. But a slice of bread made with healthy flour with your recipes for cooking kale makes an excellent mix.
Lutein is the carotene found in dark green leafy vegetables, and particularly kale and spinach. Enjoy your recipes for cooking kale and spinach daily, with a slosh of olive oil, and you have almost certain protection against macular degeneration; unless you're a smoker.
Fast healthy dinner recipes
» Recipes for cooking kale
Bernard Preston is a healthnut, some say, with a desire for a life without medication, a love of outdoor living and the backyard permaculture way of life; fancy a solar farm on your roof and fresh free range eggs every day? Bit by bit it can be achieved.
There's an important distinction between a love of the healthy lifestyle, and health nut neurosis; understand it.