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Harvesting Kale Buds

April 14th, 2012

A few weeks ago, I noticed that my ‘Red Russian’ kale plants that overwintered in the garden were starting to bud. I checked on them every day waiting for the perfect time to harvest, which happened to be last Saturday. Imagine my surprise when I logged on to Pinerest and noticed someone else pinned a post by DigginFood.com about harvesting kale buds. I’ve never really seen anyone else talk about eating kale buds.

I steamed them for a few minutes, then we enjoyed them drizzled with olive oil and a healthy dusting of freshly ground sea salt and pepper. They were quite good, not as sweet as broccoli, but since the weather is still cold at night they weren’t as bitter as they can be. I especially like that they have leaves attached, which are sweet and delicious, like sautéed kale. Next batch will be drizzled with chipotle infused ghee for a bit of spicy heat, which I really like with brassicas!

I harvested the main sprouts and the side shoots will produce as well. After another harvest or two I’ll let them set seed which I will save for future plantings and to use as sprouting seeds in the winter.

Harvesting the kale buds is a wonderful way to extend the harvest and maximize your plantings. One plant, 3 different ways to enjoy it on your dinner plate: sprouts, leaves, and buds!

Have you ever eaten kale buds?

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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