Photo Credit: Google Image Search

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Is my grocery store the ONLY one that doesn't carry Kale in the Winter?

So after the incredibly delicious success of the Risotto from that Skinny Bitch cookbook, I decided to go back and try another one of her recipes. This time, I tried a soup called "Kale and White Bean Soup." Seemed simple enough, delicious sounding ingredients, and I love tomato based soups. So, on Sunday last weekend, I set out to make this soup.

Unfortunately, after a few successes in the kitchen, it was bound to happen: this was NOT a winner. Maybe a situation like this is just what I needed. I was starting to feel a little cocky, starting to think "hey, this vegan cooking thing is a piece of cake (bundt to be more specific)." It was time I was brought to my knees with a failure. And once I'm finally able to pick myself up from the kitchen floor, wipe off my tears, and put down that bottle of wine, I'll be ready to try again.

Here's what I did wrong:
-Didn't use grapeseed oil again, what is SO great about it? Please tell me!!!
-I could not for the life of me find ANY miso paste, let alone white miso paste. I was actually quite surprised by this fact because I live almost IN China town, so I would think that the grocery stores in the area would carry this product, but no luck. I had no idea what to substitute this with, so I put in some vegetable stock, a little soy sauce, and some sesame oil. Not a great combo. I think I hate sesame oil.
-The Skinny Bitch says this is a great winter soup, but I could not find ANY Kale in the grocery store. Is Kale a winter vegetable? I substituted collard greens for kale, but when I came home and referred to my trusty Subsitution book that was given to me by fellow food blogger Maris, it told me that Kale is a medium flavored leafy green, while collard greens are more mild in flavor. Oh well. This didn't seem to be TOO much of a problem.
-Once again I had to cook this about 4-5 hours before I intended on eating it, so I cooked it and then let it sit out until I came home. Not sure if that was sanitary or not.

Here's the finished product:

In the end, this was so bland that I added hot sauce, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and seasoning salt and STILL was unimpressed. Thankfully, once it sat out for awhile, the flavors of the vegetables began to get stronger, so that was good. I think next time I'll either make SURE I have miso paste, or I'll use stock instead of water to make up the broth. But to be honest, I doubt I will ever try this recipe again...mostly because in my rage I ripped the recipe out of the book and watched it burn on the open flames of my stove.

Oh well, at least it was PRETTY and HEALTHY! And I was able to follow it up with the bundt cake.

Here's the recipe from Skinny Bitch's Ultimate Everyday Cookbook.

Kale and White Bean Soup


2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 cup (130g) peeled and chopped carrots
1 celery stalk, chopped
1/2 cup (75g) peeled and cubed potatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
6 cups (1.4 l) water
2 tablespoons white miso paste
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups (135g) chopped kale with the hard spine removed
1 (14 ounce/400g) can white beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
Pinch of Pepper


Heat the oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until golden brown, about four minutes. Add the garlic, carrots, celery, potatoes, and tomato paste until the ingredients are well combined. Add the water, white miso, cumin, coriander, and salt and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer 30 minutes. Add the kale, white beans and thyme and simmer another half hour. Garnish with basil and pepper before serving.


  1. I'm a big believer on "adapting" so in my book, winter greens are as good as kale! Looks amazing.

  2. I LOVE Skinny Bitch! I have 3 of her cookbooks!

  3. Well... miso is Japanese, not Chinese, so there ya go. You will also probably have to go to a specifically Asian / Japanese store to get it, not just a grocery store.


Go ahead...leave some love.