Cavolo nero translates literally to 'black cabbage' in Italian, which is a descriptive name for this dark leafy green. It is a non-heading vegetable that belongs to a branch of the cabbage or brassica family, descendent of the original wild cabbage. Like it's cousin kale, it shoots dark, rich bluey-green leaves from the central stalk in majestic plumes, unlike familiar round cabbage heads in green and purple. Once well cooked (the best way to consume), the leaves turn an almost inky black, bearing witness to the 'black' title. The flavour of cavolo nero is sweeter and simultaneously more subtle than kale varieties, easier on the palate but no less health-giving.
Muddy winter weather left you feeling grey? It is time to cook those dark greens down with extra vegetables and spices, layer it all atop addictive corn chips, and bake it until the cheese is melted and the aromas are calling, in this awesome vegetable laden version of nachos. Not only does cooking dark leafy greens down mean you're able to consume more of them- think sauteed spinach vs fresh, much easier to eat a huge serving of the first given how much it shrinks- but aiming for optimal health it's best to cook those tougher greens regardless of their end dish, whether it be pasta or smoothies, and then to consume them with a good whack of healthy fat.
1 Brown Onion, diced
3 cloves Garlic, minced
3 Carrots, quartered and chopped
1 large bunch Cavolo Nero (or curly kale, silverbeet), leaves separated from stems and then chopped
1/2 Cabbage, sliced thinly
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
2 cups Black or Pinto Beans
400g Chopped Tomatoes
1 1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt
1 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
1 1/2 teaspoon Cumin Powder
1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
1 large bag Corn Chips
1 1/2 cup Grated Cheese- cheddar, colby, edam, a mix; plant based or dairy
Optional extras: To serve, 1/4 bunch chopped Coriander, 3 or 4 thinly sliced radishes, pickled jalapeños, fresh lime, extra hot sauce or cheese, sour cream... make your nachos wishes come true.
The How To:
Preheat your oven to 200•.
Oil a large pan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring, until the onion is soft and translucent. Add the carrots and cook for another 2 minutes. Then add cavolo nero and cabbage, stirring and wilting it down in order to fit it all in, and allow to cook for another minute. Add beans, tomatoes, salt, pepper and spices, and over low-medium heat cook for an additional 5 minutes.
Layer the corn chips on a large baking tray. Spoon the cooked vegetables and beans over the chips. Scatter with cheese. Bake in the hot oven for about 7 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbling.
Top with coriander, radish, jalapeños, et cetera, and enjoy this epic version of Nachos con Cavolo Nero.
Created by Elena Keir of Naked Cakes and Wholefoods