09-05-2015 Journal – Kale Day!   Leave a comment

I finally was able to motivate myself yesterday to begin the process of collecting and drying herbs from the garden. It’s one of the sadder things I have to do every year as Fall approaches.  I’m forced to admit to that Winter is closing in on us and that my garden is beginning to fade away.

My better-half has been threatening to restart her daily regime of drinking healthy but unappetizing smoothies and wants some of the ingredients fresh from the garden.  Today was kale day.

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I started out with a trip to the garden and harvested two large baskets of freshly cut leaves. I then spent almost an hour cleaning and cutting the leaves   and making sure no little critters were hanging around. We occasionally have slugs attacking some of the plants but I found only a few and they were disposed of (I hate slugs).

Then it was upstairs to wash the leaves, blanch them in boiling water, and then drop them into an ice bath.  This kills any bacteria and gives the leaves a vibrant green color.  Using a Salad Spinner I removed the excess water to prepare the leaves for dehydration.

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I spread the leaves on a series of shelves and placed them into the dehydrator for four hours at 140 degrees.

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‘In’

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‘Out’

After the dehydration was complete I removed the leaves from the shelves and ground them into a fine powder with an herb grinder.  Here’s the end result of all my efforts.  Approximately 3/4 of a cup of clean and healthy smoothie ingredients. Drop a half teaspoon of the kale into any smoothie and you’re good to go.

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‘Done’

I do have to admit I’m not a big fan of healthy smoothies. Give me a good old-fashioned, high calorie, sugar loaded, milkshake made with ice cream. You can bet I won’t be sprinkling kale on that.

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‘Oh Yeah!’

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