Braised Kale with Bacon

Braised Kale with Bacon

Braised Kale with Bacon

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Braised Kale with Bacon served in a shallow white bowl resting on a wooden trivel and blue checkered kitchen towel.

Bacon has its own food group for a reason, it makes people actually want to eat Kale, LOL! At least in my world it does, and autumn is the perfect season to enjoy plenty of robust braised greens. While this recipe has been made with kale, other greens like Swiss chard, beet greens or collards will work very well also. Braised Kale with Bacon is a great side dish with roasted meats, and if by chance you have any leftovers, it’s perfect to add to a frittata, baked pasta or simply topped with a runny egg. The latter being my personal favourite because I’m a firm believer that a runny egg makes the world a tastier place and the bacon is already included, so it’s a win-win scenario.

Ingredients for Braised Kale with Bacon nestled in a shallow white tray.
Sauteed onions in an off white dutch oven in preparation of Braised Kale with Bacon.

Eating kale doesn’t have to mean you’re on a diet. The ratio of bacon and parmesan cheese in this recipe tips the healthy scale a little, but it’s also the reason it’s so tasty. Don’t be skimpy on the cheese my friends. Enjoy!

Can’t eat kale, even with bacon? Here’s a few more veggie sides to choose from.

Cranberry Almond Roasted Broccoli

Garlicky Buttered Beans

Honey Garlic Carrots and Parsnips

Author:  Compelled to Cook

 

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Braised Kale with Bacon

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 6 1/2 cup servings

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces kale about 6 ounces trimmed
  • 4 ounces bacon, 3-4 slices, diced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 tsp chili flakes
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 medium juice of 1/2 a lemon

Instructions

  • Trim kale of ribs and stems and tear them into bite-size pieces.
  • Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add chopped bacon and cook until rendered and crisp. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate.
  • Add enough olive oil to the remaining bacon fat to equal 2 tbsp (you may not need it).
  • Add sliced onions and cook over medium heat until soft, about 5-7 minutes. Add sliced garlic and chili flakes and continue to cook for an additional 2 minutes.
  • Toss in trimmed kale and salt and pepper and cook, stirring often until kale is starting to wilt 3-5 minutes.
  • Pour in broth and water, cover and cook for 12-15 minutes, stirring once or twice until kale is soft. Remove lid and continue to cook for 3-5 minutes until most of the liquid has cooked out.
  • Add parmesan cheese and bacon and toss to combine. Add a generous squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Serve immediately.

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Pappardelle with Peas and Bacon

Pappardelle with Peas and Bacon

Pappardelle with Peas and Bacon

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Pappardelle with Peas and Bacon served on a wooden plate with dimly lit candles and a linen napkin in the background.

Pappardelle with Peas and Bacon is a great way to enjoy a satisfying bowl of creamy pasta without feeling bogged down with heaviness. It has a splash of cream, just enough to cling to the noodles and make it taste heavenly. The bacon is a must for a burst of salty, meaty texture to this dish, so it’s recommended not to omit it. The peas provide that fresh, earthy bite that makes this a pasta dish that you want to eat during the summer. It’s also a lovely way to use your fresh garden peas if you’re lucky enough to have them. You simply need to simmer your fresh shelled peas in lightly salted water for about 6-7 minutes until just tender and add to the pasta with the parmesan cheese at the end. It’s so good!

Ingredients for Pappardelle with Peas and Bacon arranged on a wooden plate garnished with fresh parsley.

Don’t have pappardelle pasta? No problem, I’ve made this recipe many times using fettuccini, linguini and penne rigate. I happen to enjoy it most with the pappardelle, but use what you have and enjoy!

Pappardelle with Peas and Bacon
Print Recipe
    Servings
    2 people
    Servings
    2 people
    Pappardelle with Peas and Bacon
    Print Recipe
      Servings
      2 people
      Servings
      2 people
      Ingredients
      Servings: people
      Instructions
      1. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a gentle boil.
      2. Meanwhile, heat a medium skillet over medium heat and cook bacon until crisp-tender. Remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined dish reserving a tablespoon of bacon fat in the pan.
      3. Add pasta to boiling water and cook according to package directions. Drain pasta, reserving a cup of hot pasta water.
      4. Heat remaining bacon fat over medium-low heat and add garlic. Sauté for 1-2 minutes until starting to soften but not brown.
      5. Stir in cream, peas and salt. Heat to a full simmer and allow to reduce for 1 minute.
      6. Reduce heat to low and stir in pasta, reserved bacon, parmesan cheese and parsley and toss until combined and creamy. Add a small amount of hot pasta water as needed to bring everything together. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
      7. Serve immediately with additional parmesan cheese.
      Recipe Notes

      -Linguini, fettucini and penne rigate work well in this recipe if pappardelle is not available.  Simply substitute your favourite using the same quantity size as stated in the recipe.

      -Fresh summer peas are optimal in this recipe if you have them.  Simmer your fresh peas in lightly salted water for 6-7 minutes until just tender and add at the end with the parmesan cheese

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      I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
      Corn and Bacon Quiche

      Corn and Bacon Quiche

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      A slice of Corn and Bacon Quiche served on a small cream coloured plate with the whole quiche sitting in the background.

      Let’s celebrate World Egg Day with some delicious food!! Friday, October 11th is World Egg Day so it seems only right to enjoy this amazing Corn and Bacon Quiche.  It has all the goodness of eggs and is stuffed with bacon, corn, peppers and onions.  Oh yes, and lots of cheddar cheese.  It also has a hash-brown crust making it gluten-free as well.  It’s a high quiche with lots of filling that envelops the potato crust making it very hearty and great for brunch, lunch or dinner.

      Ingredients for Corn and Bacon Quiche arranged on a wooden cutting board on a yellow napkin.

      So why does the egg get its own day?  It’s simple, eggs are extremely nutritious, high in quality protein, very economical, versatile and delicious of course. So yes, I believe the egg does deserve its own day!

      An asssembled but unbaked Corn and Bacon quiche on a wooden cutting board resting on a yellow napkin.

      Corn and Bacon Quiche tips:

      -Make sure all frozen ingredients like the potatoes and corn are completely thawed and patted dry if necessary.

      -Use a deep-dish pie plate for this recipe, one that is at least 1 1/2″ – 2” deep and comfortably holds 32 ounces of liquid. There is too much filling for a standard pie plate.

      -Don’t over bake the quiche. It should jiggle slightly in the center when it is done and it will continue to firm up as it rests.

      -Be sure to rest the quiche before slicing. This allows the quiche to firm up and will help with slicing and keeping all the ingredients together instead of spilling out when cut.

       

      Corn and Bacon Quiche
      Print Recipe
        Servings Prep Time
        6-8 servings 45 minutes
        Cook Time
        35-40 minutes
        Servings Prep Time
        6-8 servings 45 minutes
        Cook Time
        35-40 minutes
        Corn and Bacon Quiche
        Print Recipe
          Servings Prep Time
          6-8 servings 45 minutes
          Cook Time
          35-40 minutes
          Servings Prep Time
          6-8 servings 45 minutes
          Cook Time
          35-40 minutes
          Ingredients
          Servings: servings
          Instructions
          1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
          2. Brush a 9.5" deep dish (1 1/2"-2" high) pie plate with a tbsp of melted butter.
          3. Pat potatoes dry with a paper towel if needed. Toss potatoes with remaining 2 tbsp of melted butter and 1/2 tsp kosher salt.
          4. Press potatoes evenly into the pie plate and up the sides to form a crust. Using the back of a flat measuring cup helps to press it down.
          5. Bake potato crust for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and reduce oven temperature to 350°F.
          6. Meanwhile, chop bacon into 1/2" pieces and saute in a medium skillet until crisp. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate reserving 1 tbsp of bacon fat in the pan.
          7. To the same skillet add diced onion and red pepper and saute until starting to soften about 3-5 minutes.
          8. In a medium bowl whisk together eggs and sour cream until combined. Whisk in cream, basil, remaining 3/4 tsp salt, white pepper and chili flakes.
          9. Sprinkle the bacon, onion and red pepper evenly over the cooked potato crust. Top with an even layer of corn and cheese.
          10. Pour egg mixture evenly over everything. Shake gently to allow ingredients to settle.
          11. Bake on the middle rack for 35-40 minutes. The center should jiggle just a little while the outer edges are firmer to the touch.
          12. Allow the quiche to rest for 10 minutes prior to slicing. Slice into 6-8 wedges and serve immediately.
          Recipe Notes

          -I used white pepper to avoid having black flecks in the quiche, however black pepper is just as good.

          -Be sure to use a deep-dish pie plate as the filling will not fit in a standard pie plate. It needs to comfortably hold 32 ounces of liquid.

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          I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
          Cheesy Pesto BLT

          Cheesy Pesto BLT

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          Cheesy Pesto BLT is grilled cheese and BLT sandwiches married together with vibrant pesto.  It’s the indulgent, adult sandwich for the kid in all of us.

          Cheesy Pesto BLT sandwich cut and stacked on a small wooden tray.

          I was recently asked by a friend and co-worker what he and his work crew could cook up with limited kitchen gear. Available was a frying pan, electric grill press and a toaster oven.  One of my first thoughts was a  grilled cheese sandwich.  But on second thought, who wants just a grilled cheese, other than a 5-year-old of course?  

          I sent him a recipe for a pesto grilled cheese because I knew the combo would be amazing and it got me thinking that it could be the start of something great. I knew I wanted to add some kind of meat, and plenty of chewy bacon was the answer for a heartier sandwich. And how can you not have bacon without fresh tomato slices and cool, crisp lettuce? They bring balance to the melty cheese and salty bacon which are wonderfully paired with the pesto.  So remember, grilled cheese doesn’t have to be “JUST” a grilled cheese. 

          Ingredients for Cheesy Pesto BLT arranged on a small wooden tray draped with a white kitchen towel.

          Truthfully, the kid in me loves that simple and traditional grilled cheese made with processed cheese slices, but I also love pesto and BLT’s, so it only made sense to put them all together into one delicious sandwich.  So don’t just think grilled cheese when graving crispy fried bread and oozy cheese.  Think Cheesy Pesto BLT!!

          Cheesy Pesto BLT
          Print Recipe
            Servings Prep Time
            2 people 15 minutes
            Cook Time
            10 minutes
            Servings Prep Time
            2 people 15 minutes
            Cook Time
            10 minutes
            Cheesy Pesto BLT
            Print Recipe
              Servings Prep Time
              2 people 15 minutes
              Cook Time
              10 minutes
              Servings Prep Time
              2 people 15 minutes
              Cook Time
              10 minutes
              Ingredients
              Servings: people
              Instructions
              1. Heat a non-stick stick or cast-iron skillet over medium heat until hot.
              2. Butter the outside of each bread slice.
              3. Place the bread buttered side down in skillet and layer provolone evenly over two slices. Adjust heat to medium-low.
              4. Spread 1 tbsp of pesto evenly over the cheese and top with 3 slices of bacon each.
              5. Cook on medium-low to medium until bottoms are golden and cheese is melty. (I find medium-low best to melt cheese while not overcooking the bread)
              6. Remove grilled bread from pan and top the cheese side slices with tomato slices. Season tomatoes with freshly ground sea salt and pepper to taste. Top with lettuce and remaining grilled bread.
              7. Cut as desired and serve immediately.
              Recipe Notes

              - You can use fresh or purchased pesto in this recipe.  I do recommend using fresh if possible like my Classic Pesto

              -Prep time is based on using pre-made pesto and pre-cooked bacon.

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              I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
              Mushroom Gruyere Tart

              Mushroom Gruyere Tart

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              Need another meatless option for Lent? This recipe can easily be made without the bacon. Or perhaps you’re looking for an elevated appetizer for Easter, or you simply want a wonderful make-ahead option for other entertaining occasions. This gorgeous Mushroom Gruyere Tart has you covered.  Meaty mushrooms are smothered with cream cheese and herbs, topped with gruyere and baked in a puff pastry shell. 

              It’s a simple yet elegant pastry to add to your table whether as a main course item or appetizer. I quite like it for lunch served with a green salad. It’s one of my personal favourites because it uses everyday ingredients, is easy to prepare and can be made in advance and baked fresh when you’re ready.  It smells amazing when baking and the combination of crispy puff pastry and creamy mushrooms is oh so drool worthy. 

              Love mushrooms? You’ll want to check out these wonderful recipes.

              Mushroom Herb Rice

              Mushroom Lasagna

              Mushroom Bacon Risotto

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              Affiliate Disclosure

              I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com

              A baked Mushroom Gruyere Tart from Compelled to Cook is cut into wedges on a cutting board that is draped with a striped towel and scattered with mushrooms.
              Mushroom Gruyere Tart
              Print Recipe
                Servings Prep Time
                8 appetizer wedges 40 minutes
                Cook Time Passive Time
                25 minutes 2-3 minutes
                Servings Prep Time
                8 appetizer wedges 40 minutes
                Cook Time Passive Time
                25 minutes 2-3 minutes
                A baked Mushroom Gruyere Tart from Compelled to Cook is cut into wedges on a cutting board that is draped with a striped towel and scattered with mushrooms.
                Mushroom Gruyere Tart
                Print Recipe
                  Servings Prep Time
                  8 appetizer wedges 40 minutes
                  Cook Time Passive Time
                  25 minutes 2-3 minutes
                  Servings Prep Time
                  8 appetizer wedges 40 minutes
                  Cook Time Passive Time
                  25 minutes 2-3 minutes
                  Ingredients
                  Servings: appetizer wedges
                  Instructions
                  1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. If using bacon, add to skillet and cook until crisp and fat has rendered. Scoop out the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate. Remove all but a tablespoon of fat.
                  2. If not using bacon, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
                  3. Add shallot and garlic and sauté, stirring often until starting to soften about 3 minutes. Add mushrooms and continue to cook until most of the moisture has cooked out about 8-10 minutes.
                  4. Add wine, thyme, salt and pepper and cook until the wine has cooked out about 3 minutes.
                  5. Stir in cream cheese, 1/4 cup of Gruyere and bacon (if using).
                  6. Preheat oven to 425℉ and lightly spray a 4 3/4"- 5 3/4" x 14" tart pan with removable bottom. Fit puff pastry into the tart pan and trim the top so it is level with the pan. You will need to cut the puff pastry sheet in two pieces to make it fit.
                  7. Spread filling evenly into pastry shell and sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup of grated gruyere. Bake for about 25 minutes until golden and filling is bubbly.
                  8. Allow tart to rest for a couple of minutes prior to removing the outer pan. Cut into wedges, garnish with fresh thyme and serve immediately.
                  Recipe Notes

                  The tart can be assembled up to a day in advance and kept covered and chilled until ready to bake.