Sometimes the side is the star

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Harvest Walnuts and Kale with Seseme Crusted Ahi Tuna

I love Ahi Tuna, don’t get me wrong. It is a go to main dish and I prepared it lots of different ways. Our grocery store has a nice frozen 12 ounce package and it goes on sale often.  I stock up when it goes on sale at usually less than six bucks. Tonight it is brushed with olive oil and crusted with sesame seeds and herbs and seared. Nice and pink in the middle. But what on earth goes with it? I was definitely not in the mood for more carbs, not potatoes, not rice, no noodles for me tonight.  A nice bunch of kale was waiting, beckoning. Kale can be tricky. I’ve blown it a couple of times. Sometimes bitter, tough and a bit too earthy for most folks. But tonight it worked! Combined with harvest toasted walnuts, cranberries and a surprise sprinkle– ribbons of Jamón serrano — it made the perfect side dish.

Harvest Walnuts and Kale
1 tablespoon walnut oil
2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup low salt, low fat chicken stock
1/4 cup walnut pieces
1 bunch fresh kale
1/4 cup diced yellow onions
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons white balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons cranberries
Salt and ground pepper to taste
Garnish with 2 slices jamon serrano, ribbon sliced

Wash kale, remove ribs and stems, rough chop
Dice yellow onions

1. Toast Walnuts: Preheat walnut and olive oils in large saute pan, medium high, cook walnuts, stirring constantly about 5-7 minutes until lightly toasted but not burnt. Remove walnuts, cool and chop.
2. Crisp Jamon:  In same pan, add jamon to oil and quick fry for 1 minute to crisp remove and drain on paper towels.
3. Saute Onions:  To pan, add 1 teaspoon of olive oil and diced yellow onion, cook until translucent, sprinkle with one teaspoon of sugar to caramelize
4. Cook Kale: Add kale, stir to mix with onions and wilt kale. Add 1/2 cup chicken stock, and 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar, cover and cook 10 minutes over low heat, then add cranberries. Cook 5 minutes more, reducing liquid. Taste before adding any salt, pepper to taste. Turn off heat, add toasted chopped walnuts.
Sprinkle with jamon ribbons and serve.

Cook’s Tip
Substitute 2 slices bacon pieces for Jamon Serrano but you will need to drain bacon fat before adding onions and kale. I also cooked the walnuts in Limerock Orchards Walnut Oil for a doubly buttery toasty goodness. Found it on a recent trip to San Luis Obisbo, CA.

Limerock Orchards

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2 Responses to Sometimes the side is the star

  1. I don’t think I’d miss the carbs if I had a good looking dinner like that!

  2. Robin says:

    Each componet complimented the other. The kale is so rich, I really didn’t miss any starches. Wine does not count!

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