Tag Archives: Sea Kale

Fasciated dandelion- udo- sea kale salad

Not something I can make very often as I don’t find fasciated dandelions very often! A simple salad was put together, made fascinating with a fasciated dandelion.
The blanched udo (Aralia cordata) was ready:
I harvested some blanched sea kale (Crambe maritima) too and I found a fasciated dandelion to decorate the salad
The udo was peeled 

…and the salad was put together with the fasciated dandelion flower stem cut into strips and mixed in with a sesame oil – soya sauce dressing:
 

Unintentional presents

Yesterday was my birthday and the best presents were all unintended as birthday presents:
1. Allium victorialis from a large stand that has naturalised from a farm garden in Nordland county, Norway to be offered to various members of KVANN (Norwegian Seed Savers) when I get time (From Inger Elvebakk, who also took the picture):

2. A new sea kale / strandkål (Crambe maritima) accession from a KVANN member, from a wild population

3. Decorah Posten took over a month to get here, but it arrived too on my birthday (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decorah_Posten); more about this another time!


Winter protecting my perennial kales

Kales (Brassica oleracea) have a reputation for being really hardy, but in reality there are many perennial vegetables that are far more hardy.  I mean, kales don’t really make much effort to protect themselves, remaining green all winter and in a normal winter here all my kales would die. However, in areas with mild winters, they are useful as they can be harvested all winter outside. Most perennials die back to the roots and reshoot in spring. Sea kale (Crambe maritima) is one example of this and is thus easier to overwinter. A dream of the perennial kale breeder is a variety that is capable of reshooting from the roots or at least from low down on the plant. 
The last couple of winters have been very mild with hardly any frost all winter and almost all my kales have survived (the exception being less hardy Tree collards from California). This winter has been significantly colder and the air temperature has only been above zero C since New Year for a short period. I was prepared for this and spread a thick layer of leaves around the roots to stop the soil freezing around the roots with either jute, spruce branches or planks over to stop the leaves blowing away in winter storms. 
In addition, I always take cuttings which I overwinter in a cold room in the house. Almost 100% of cuttings are successful.

Norwegian quinoa and swamp greens medley

13th June 2020 perennial greens were stir-fried and served with quinoa and served with Allium ursinum flowers.
Allium validum (swamp or Pacific onion) with flower shoot
Saxifraga pensylvanica (swamp saxifrage)
Gunnera tinctoria
Asparagus officinalis (asparges)
Crambe maritima (sea kale / strandkål broccolis)
Perennial kale “Walsall Allotments” (flerårig kål)
Campanula latifolia (giant bellflower / storklokke)
Aster macrophyllus (big-leaf aster)
flowering shoots of various Russian Rumex acetosa cultivars (sorrel / engsyre)

The greens were stir-fried with chili and garlic and served with Norwegian organic quinoa with ramsons (ramsløk) flowers:

Pizza greens 1st May 2020

Presenting yesterdays greens used on a veggie 100% whole grain barley/spelt/rye sourdough pizza were:
Hablitzia tamnoides (Caucasian spinach /stjernemelde) (eaten now every day since the beginning of March and there’s more to harvest now than at any time since I started!) 
Crambe maritima (sea kale / strandkål)
Allium ursinum (ramsons / ramsløk)
Levisticum officinale (lovage / løpstikke) (I call blanched lovage “spring celery” as it’s not that much stronger than celery…and much easier to grow than celery organically)
Ligularia fischeri (Gomchwi; Fischer’s Ligularia / Koreansk nøkketunge) (King of the Sannamul: see http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?page_id=3114)
Rumex patientia (Patience dock / Hagesyre)
Bistorta officinalis (Bistort / Ormerot)

An Aristocratic Vegetable

Sea kale Crambe maritima is sometimes referred to as the King of the Vegetables (Queen is perhaps more fitting!) . This is partly due to the fact that it was in the past cultivated in heated greenhouses for nobility in the UK for Christmas! Maybe not the King, it is certainly an aristocrat and the easiest perennial brassica in cold climates (along wtih even hardier Crambe cordifolia) as it is hardier than perennial kales as it resprouts from the roots every spring and can easily be covered by a mulch of leaves or suchlike in colder climates. I do this every autumn just in case we have a very cold winter (I have experienced plants to resprout from deep roots when the surface roots have been killed in winter). I would normally take off the leaf mulch early April, but this winter it’s been so mild I removed it a few days ago and the plant had already put out delicious sprouts…I’ve been snacking on them! My oldest sea kale is approaching 40 years old, but hasn’t appeared yet (oldies sleep longer I guess!). Much more about Sea Kale in my book Around the World in 80 plants or by searching here: https://www.edimentals.com/blog/?s=sea+kale

They are also beautiful. The pictures show the cultivar Lily White which is only about 8 years old.

Winter ready perennial kales

This week I’ve spent a lot of time preparing various less hardy plants for winter, laying down blackberry canes and covering with leaves and jute sacking to hold the leaves in place and similarly with sea kale which is marginally hardy here.
Even though it was under -5C it was dry and quite pleasant to work outside raking leaves from the wild part of the garden.
I was a bit late this year, the cold spell with 10 days below 0C every day means that there’s already 10cm or so frozen solid in parts of the garden, so crossing fingers that I wasn’t too late.
Here’s part of my collection of perennial kales which are marginal here even with the roots protected. In my world, kales are of the least hardy vegetables :)

The canes of my 30 year old blackberry are almost as long as the south facing wall of my house:

…and my 35 year old seakale bed, covered as maybe 1 in 10 winters they wouldn’t survive!

 

 

Veggie wholegrain pizza with New Zealand Spinach

My daughter asked if we’d like to come and join her and her friend in Napolitana (the village pizza restaurant). We were actually just about to eat pizza with new zealand spinach (NZ spinat), broad beans (bondebønner), Johannes shallots (Sankthans-sjalott), patience dock (hagesyre), sea kale (strandkål) and steinsopp (cep / porcini) topping with Hartington Silver thyme (timian) in the tomato sauce with chili….on a sourdough pizza made with 100% wholegrain barley (bygg), svedjerug (Svedje rye), spelt and emmer wheat.
We ate at home!

Never before pizza?

More or less anything can be used in a pizza, but I wager these have never been used in the same pizza: Oplopanax horridum, Allium scorodoprasum, Crambe maritima (sea kale /strandkål), Ligularia fischeri and Reynoutria japonica (Japanese knotweed).

Happy Habby Pizza

Last night’s dinner was a 100% wholegrain sourdough pizza with Hablitzia, four cheese and poppy seed topping…
The dough was made from a selection of whole grain organic flours including: coarse rye, emmer, barley, coarse spelt, svedjerug and a few barley and svedjerug grains added.
It was accompanied by a blanched salad – sea kale, dandelion “Vert de Montmagny Ameliore” and Allium tuberosum!
Sooooo tasty….

The Hablitzia once again impresses with its incredible productivity and early growth in one of the driest, shadiest places in the garden!