Balsamic Kale and Vegetable SAUTÉ

The holidays have come and gone, and I'm just sitting down to write my first blog post of the year! Talk about a whirlwind.

The hype for fitness and self-improvement notoriously accompany the New Year. (Let's face it, most of us have purchased a new pair of Nike running shoes or a fitness app in the past couple of weeks...) I'm not opposed to positive life change - in fact, many aspects of my life as of recently have demanded it. Although I'm a proponent for such changes, I won't commit to new routines unless I see them as necessary and sustainable.

My husband Mackey and I, in response to some recent health quandaries, have shifted our way of eating to a heart healthy diet, consuming minimally processed foods. This largely means: low sodium, low fat, minimal dairy and sugar intake. Of course, this sort of change isn't an easy one to commit to right around the holidays. My first thought was... "but what about the pies! And the cookies!" ...but it was something we knew we needed to do. At first, the thought of revamping our diets was a bit overwhelming... but perseverance and research have certainly paid off, and we have begun to experience the successes of transforming our food life. 

In the spirit of trying new, healthy dishes, I wanted to share one that I recently made and thoroughly enjoyed.

Balsamic Kale and Vegetable sauté

Makes: 4 servings

+ One head of kale (medium)
+ One carrot (small)
+ One green bell pepper (medium)
+ One purple sweet potato (medium)
+ 2-3 cloves of garlic
+ 1/4 cup yellow onion
+ 3 Tbsp coconut oil
+ 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar 

Warm 1.5 Tbsp of coconut oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Add finely chopped onion and cloves of pressed garlic (I used three) into pan and sauté until they are browned and softened. Add balsamic vinegar to the pan, and continue to stir over medium heat in order to make a balsamic reduction. Once the mixture has a slightly more viscous consistency, add the coarsely chopped kale. Mix kale in the balsamic reduction until the leaves are wilted (using low-to-medium heat.) 

In another medium sauce pan, warm the remaining 1.5 Tbsp of coconut oil. Add the diced carrot, bell pepper, and sweet potato. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the mixture is browned and tender.

Combine wilted kale and vegetable mixture in a bowl, and serve with your favorite protein!