This variety of kale has a long history traced back to Tuscany in the 18th Century. A rather primitive open kale with 3″ wide strapped leaves that are 10″ long on 2-3′ tall plants. Pick the leaves from the bottom up for continuous harvest.
Lacinato Kale History
Lacinto Kale (aka Dinosaur) is a variety of kale that has a long history traced back to Tuscany in the 18th Century. A rather primitive open kale with 3″ wide strapped leaves that are 10″ long on 2-3′ tall plants. Pick the leaves from the bottom up for continuous harvest. Very tolerant of cold temperatures, flavor becomes sweeter after a hard frost. High levels of antioxidant carotenoids.
What Is Lacinato Kale?
Dinosaur kale is a dark green leafy vegetable. Popular in Italian food, it’s also called Tuscan kale or cavolo nero. The leaves are so hearty that, even when well cooked, they retain a wonderful firm texture, making it a great choice for braising or adding to stews. It’s also sweeter and less bitter than other types of kale and packed with healthy nutrients.
Kale is easy to grow from seeds either directly planted in the garden soil or started indoors and then transplanted. It is also commonly planted from nursery starts. Kale grows equally well in raised garden beds and containers if you’re short on garden space. It can be grown as a cut-and-come-again vegetable, meaning you harvest what you need while the plant continues to grow. So you might require only a few kale plants, depending on how often and how much you’d like to harvest. Click here to learn more.
Preserving And Storing Lacinato Kale
If you aren’t going to get to the kale within a week, don’t sweat it—you can freeze kale leaves to use them in green smoothies later on. All it takes is a quick blanch and a couple steps in the freezer. To blanch the kale, set a large pot of salted water to boil and prep a large bowl of ice water. Remove the kale leaves from the stems (don’t toss them!) using a paring knife or your hands. When the water boils, toss in the kale leaves and cook until they brighten in color, 1 to 2 minutes. Drain them in a colander transfer to the ice water to cool. Dry the blanched kale thoroughly using a salad spinner or paper towels, then freeze the dry leaves flat on a rimmed baking sheet until frozen solid, 1 to 2 hours. Once they’re frozen, transfer the kale leaves to a freezer bag and store in the freezer for up to 8 months. You can add them straight from frozen to blenders for smoothies, or chop them while still frozen to add to soup and stews.
Lacinato Kale Recipe
This delicious powerhouse veggie adds great flavor to soups and casseroles it’s perfect served up as a Easy Kale Salad with Fresh Lemon Dressing and great on its own as a side dish!
Lacinato Kale Nutrition
A single serving (one cup) contains more than a day’s worth of vitamin A requirement, which is important for eye health and immune function. It is also full of vitamins K, C, and B6 as well as manganese, copper, calcium, and magnesium. One cup of cooked kale contains 1000% more vitamin C than one cup of cooked spinach.
Other Kale Varieties Worth Checking Out