A Very Green Breakfast: Kale Pesto Toast with Steamed Brussels sprouts

Photo by Eva Bronzini on Pexels.com

Christ is Risen!

Instead of “Anastasia’s Peaceful Kitchen”, I sometimes wonder if I should rename the blog “The Picky Eater”. I have been a very picky eater since I was a young girl. I have a strong distaste for tomatoes, pickles, fish, and some fermented things. Tomatoes, however, I don’t mind having as ketchup or as a salsa. As for greens, I am quite picky with them as well, especially salads at restaurants. I feel like many restaurants underestimate salads- its simple to make, yes, but when made with care and love, not just tossing the greens and toppings together, it can be an exceptional simple dish. Kale, depending on the person, may say it’s over or under rated. My opinion? I think its underestimated. Ever so, that I once wrote a love poem about kale back in my dog walking days.

Photo by Eva Bronzini on Pexels.com

Kale has a beautiful green hue, sometimes purple if it’s a Dinosaur or Tuscan kale. It’s leaves are sturdy and strong filled with life that provides energy and cleanses our blood. This strong quality is beautiful but turns many people off. If only people knew that massaging it with some love and lemon juice – or Dijon Mustard according to Karen Page, you break down its tough exterior. Sort of sounds like us humans, doesn’t it? If we just show love to one another, forgive not only ourselves but one another, we can break down our sturdy facade.

An even easier way to break down kale is by blending it. If green smoothies are not your cup of tea, hello pestos! Pestos are a great way to get your macro and micronutrients, plus you can be so creative with it. If you have a picky eater, child or adult, pesto is such a great way to get them to eat healthy. Add it to pasta, toast, soup topping, a dip for “chicken” fingers, fries, sandwich spread etc. You can pretty much use any green leafy vegetable. Basil is optional but recommended. Use your choice of nuts and cheese (non dairy or one from a local farm).

In my most recent pesto creation, I used my arugula pesto inspiration to make this kale pesto. I have a kale pesto recipe posted up but I had a lot of kale to use so I decided to follow the arugula recipe. For this most recent pesto, I used roasted almonds. I used this pesto as a topping for my beet-mushroom risotto, a dip for steamed vegetables, and most recently, on toast with steamed Brussels sprouts, which I will share the recipe shortly. It helps to have your pesto ready ahead of time if you have a busy morning, but in any case, the pesto can be made in less than 10 minutes. I prefer to steam my vegetables right before instead of prepped in advance; you can, however, have the Brussels sprouts chopped in advance to save time and hassle.

Here is my recipe for an amazing super green breakfast. Coming from a picky eater myself…

Give kale a chance. 🙂

Photo by Eva Bronzini on Pexels.com

INGREDIENTS 
Pesto

5 bunches of kale, washed

1 1/4 cup Violife mozzarella shreds or non dairy shredded cheese of choice, or use from your local farm

1 cup walnuts, almonds or cashews

4 garlic cloves, crushed, or more according to your taste

1 bunch fresh basil, optional

Juice from 1 lemon

6 oz extra virgin olive oil, plus more as needed

Salt, according to taste

A handful of steamed Brussels Sprouts

Slices of bread of choice

Hemp seeds, for garnish

Directions
  1. To make steamed Brussels sprouts: Fill a pot with water just below the steamer basket. Bring water to a boil. Clean and trim the Brussel sprouts. Slice them so that all sprouts are same in size for steaming. When the water is boiling, add in the sprouts, may take 4 – 6 minutes depending on the size of your sprouts. Don’t let them overcook. You will know when they are ready by piercing with a knife or fork to check for tenderness. If they slide off, the Brussel sprouts are ready.
  2. Pesto: As the sprouts are cooking, add all pesto ingredients into the blender, except the oil. Blend the ingredients to break it down a bit. Slowly add in the olive oil with the blade running. I like to blend my pesto, depending on the amount, for about 2 – 3 minutes to break down the greens and nuts.
  3. Add your slice(s) of bread into the toaster oven and set it at a setting how you like your toast once the sprouts and pesto are ready.
  4. Spread a thin or thick layer of pesto on each slice of toast. Sprinkle hemp seeds lightly or generously over the pesto.
  5. Add the Brussels sprouts. I rather enjoyed having each bite with a Brussel sprout, but add as many as you like. Enjoy! Smacznego!
Photo by Alesia Kozik on Pexels.com

Nutritional Benefits
Kale

A half-cup, cooked and chopped, provides 4,810 IU vitamin A, 26.7 mg vitamin C, 148 mg potassium, and 47 mg calcium.

Nutritional profile:

72% Carbs

16% Protein

12% Fat

35 calories per 1 cup serving (raw, chopped)

Protein: 2g

BASIL

Possible benefits of basil are reducing stomach cramps and nausea, relieves gas, promotes normal bowel function, and aids digestion. (Earl Mindell’s New Herb Bible, Earl Mindell, R.Ph., Ph.D)

Walnuts

Overall, nuts are a rich source of protein, vitamin B2, vitamin B3, vitamin B5, boron (raw nuts), copper, fiber, magnesium, manganese; Brazil nuts in particular are rich in selenium. 

Walnuts, specifically:

Nutritional profile: 

83% fats 

9% carbs 

8% protein

185 calories per 1 ounce serving 

Protein: 4g

Almonds

Overall, nuts are a rich source of protein, vitamin B2, vitamin B3, vitamin B5, boron (raw nuts), copper, fiber, magnesium, manganese; Brazil nuts in particular are rich in selenium. 

Toasting almonds brings out their flavor and crunchiness.

Almonds, specifically:

Nutritional profile:

72% Fat

15% Carbs

13% Protein

165 calories per 1 ounce serving (about 20 – 25 whole almonds)

Protein: 6g

Cashews

Overall, nuts are a rich source of protein, vitamin B2, vitamin B3, vitamin B5, boron (raw nuts), copper, fiber, magnesium, manganese; Brazil nuts in particular are rich in selenium. 

Roasting cashews brings out their flavor and crunchiness.

Cashews, specifically:

Nutritional profile:

66% Fat

23% Carbs

11% Protein

155 calories per 1 ounce serving (raw nuts)

Protein: 5g

GARLIC 

I added extra garlic, as always, to the pesto mix. I used about 5-6 garlic cloves, maybe 1 or two more tiny ones. I consider garlic to be a superfood; superfood does not always have to break our wallet or be an ingredient that comes from a land abroad, like acai, goji, or golden berries, which are typically visualized in peoples minds when they hear the word “superfood”. Sometimes it is grown in our very own garden. 

Garlic is a good natural plant based source of copper, magnesium, potassium, and selenium. 

Studies have shown that the daily consumption of between 7 – 28 cloves of raw garlic may help prevent cholesterol buildup and stomach cancer. While using one or 2 cloves a day may not have the same effect, garlic in this quantity can work miracles on bland food.

Nutritional profile:

85% carbs 

12% protein

3% fat 

5 calories/clove (raw)

LEMON

Lemon juice, especially when added to greens, adds brightness to the dish. Lemons contain magnesium and phytochemcials such as limonoids and terpenes. Limonoids contain detoxification properties and can help conditions such as cancer and cardiovascular disease prevention. Terpenes contain anticancer properties and can help cancer prevention and hormone balance.  

Nutritional profile: 

63% carbs 

24% protein

13% fat 

20 calories/medium lemon (raw, with peel) 

Protein: 1g

Sources
  • “Vegetarian Flavor Bible”, Karen Page 
  • “Prescription for Natural Healing”, Phyllis A. Balch, CNC
  • “Prescription for Natural Healing”, James. E. Balch, MD 
  • “Healing with Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition”, Paul Pitchford, 3rd Edition
  • “Earl Mindell’s New Herb Bible”, Earl Mindell, R.Ph., Ph.D
  • “Food Essentials: Vegetebles” by Olwen Woodier

2 Comments Add yours

  1. hmkzosimas says:

    I’m not a picky eater, and I love kale.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ☺️ 😊 I know you love your greens Father! 😁 There’s one place (Blossom on Columbus) that makes an exceptionally amazing kale Ceasar salad 🥗

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s