Hi Everyone,

Do you ever use kale in your cooking?  I haven’t until my daughter asked me to buy it because she wanted to make kale chips.  Kale is a form of cabbage with green or purple leaves and is a one of the superfoods, packed full of nutrition and fibre.

Influenced by my fourteen year old daughter, I’ve been making changes to my families diet towards a healthier way of eating.  I’ve included a few non meat meals during the week, healthy salads, brown rice instead of white..we’re getting there.  When my daughter started requesting healthier food, I was surprised by my reaction, I was totally resistant..”but I like white rice”, “brown rice is to hard to cook” etc.  Now that I’ve had some time to get used to it I’m enjoying eating healthier and exploring new ingredients and will start to include a few healthy recipes on the blog as well as my normal style of cooking with the occasional sweet treat!

With this in mind, I was delighted last week when there was a story on kale in the Sunday paper magazine.  It’s a great salad with a lovely dressing that finishes it off beautifully.  The kale chips are good too and make for a crunchy snack between meals.

I’m late with my post this week as I’ve been doing things out in the ‘real world’.  I’ve started to volunteer at an Opportunity (Charity) Shop on Fridays which I’m enjoying.  The funny thing is the part I was most nervous of (serving at the front counter) is the part I’m loving the most and chatting to all the lovely people who come into the store.

I’m also doing some work at a Florist learning about flowers, how to prepare them for sale and the myriad of tasks involved in the day to day running a florist shop.  I arranged some flowers in bud vases for a restaurant a few doors down and there may be an early morning trip to the flower markets coming up so I can see how that process works..Would you like to come along?…4am start…. Anybody!!!

All of this has come about because I’ve been home for the last couple of years looking after my family and blogging but started to feel unfulfilled because I needed a purpose for myself that involved paid work.  I also felt I was losing confidence from being out of the workforce.

Some time ago Tina from Colourliving tweeted me The School Of Life were coming to Australia.  I’d read posts on Tina’s blog about The School Of Life – a talk she attended on vulnerability by Brene Brown here and a conversation with Roman Krznaric here the author of the book I’m about to tell you about.  The School of Life is a cultural enterprise offering good ideas for everyday life. Based in Central London but now in Australia they  offer programmes and services concerned with how to live wisely and well.  They explore topics such as why is work often so unfulfilling and why are relationships so challenging.

Since they’ve been in Australia the classes have sold out so quickly.  I didn’t make it to a class but bought the book called “How To Find Fulfilling Work” by Roman Krznaric and it’s been instrumental in helping me make concrete steps to find not only part time work but work I enjoy and is fulfilling.  I can’t wait to explore other offerings from the School of Life, their courses and books are so reasonably priced for what you get out of them.

I can’t recommend this book enough if you find yourself in the same place I did or are not feeling fulfilled in your current job and are struggling for answers.

Well, that’s enough from me, here are the recipes!

Kale and Lentil Salad with Eschalot Dressing

1 tablespoon olive oil, 3 garlic cloves – sliced,  300g kale trimmed & roughly torn, 
1 x 400g can lentils – drained & rinsed, 300g fennel – shaved, 180g danish fetta, 
1/2 cup mint leaves, 1/2 cup basil leaves.

Eschalot Dressing
1 eschalot (small red french shallot) – finely chopped,  1/3 cup red wine vinegar, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 tsp brown sugar, sea salt & black pepper.

Whisk all the dressing ingredients in a bowl.

Heat the olive oil in a frying pan, add garlic and cook until just golden.
Add the kale, cook until just wilted.

Transfer to a bowl and add the rest of the salad ingredients.

Add some dressing and toss to combine, serve piled onto a big plate.

Kale Chips

250g kale – stalks removed & roughly torn, olive oil, salt, pepper.

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees.  Mix the kale, olive oil, salt & pepper together in a bowl and place on a baking tray with non stick baking paper (you may need two baking trays as you don’t want to crowd the tray).  Bake until crispy (approx 10 minutes).  Cool, serve like this or sprinkle with additional flavourings eg. chilli flakes or grated parmesan cheese.

Both recipes adapted from Donna Hay section of the Sunday Style Magazine.

Catherine x


  1. Missy Piggy

    I've just planted some kale so we'll see how it goes. I'm glad you posted this as other than kale chips I'm at a loss on what to use kale for.

    I've always worked – I'm tired. I'd love a break – but I think after awhile I'd be wanting to work again…

  2. mel

    I understand where you're coming from, I've been there and it's one of the reasons that I began to blog, for that creative outlet. It's great that you're volunteering for a good cause, that's good for the soul! I'd love to see the flower arrangements you make:) As for kale – urgh I've heard of it, still wondering if it tastes good… Just kidding, I've had it

  3. tina @ colourliving

    Where do I begin?????

    Let's start with healthy eating. I LOVE your daughter, not only for wanting to eat more healthy BUT for also re-educating her parents (at least trying to)

    I admire you for your vulnerability in sharing your 'resistance' in making changes to your eating habits.

    It is a testament to you as a parent how you're willing to embrace

  4. Catherine Bedson

    @misspiggy glad I could give you a new kale recipe Mel.

    @Mel totally understand your reaction to kale Mel, I was the same. I never tried it before now it's nice in this salad as you wilt it in a pan with some garlic. As I do more with the flowers I'll post some photos..thanks for your lovely comment. xx

    @Tina thanks Tina for your wonderful comments and for letting

  5. Liz : strayed from the table

    I have planted kale for the first time this winter, after last year eating it every day I was spending $3 on a bunch weekly. I love the stuff.
    The salad looks super healthy and I really need to try and make kale chips one day. I just love it steamed with a squeeze of lemon juice a little olive oil and S+P. Yum.

  6. Keely

    Your salad looks gorgeous! I will bookmark this to try next time I pick up a big bunch of kale at the shops :) Good on you for expanding your horizons and finding new things to do – volunteering and helping people actually releases endorphins and increases your happiness. X

  7. noreen

    hello catherine! i made kale chips a week or so ago and linked to your lovely salad. been busy at school, but happy to come and see what's happening.

    happy to read everyone's comments too. and checked out the site that you linked to. keep us up on your adventures!

    happy easter! n

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