Kale with Pappardelle and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Do you ever get a paper delivered to you that you never signed up for, and it has maybe one article of interest and a bunch of ads for the rest of it? Apparently, whoever lived in our house before us signed up for the Baltimore Sun Extra, and we still get it two and a half years later. Usually the cover story is about a local restaurant. Sometimes it features an in-season ingredient. Most of the time I just recycle it without even looking at it. 

This time around, the featured vegetable was kale. I discovered my love of kale about three years ago when Justin and I signed up for our first CSA (community supported agriculture). To be honest, I had never eaten kale before then (or collards or kohlrabi or quite a few other items). The Sun Extra featured a few recipes with kale, and this one with sun-dried tomatoes caught my eye. 

This dish has gotten much favor in our normal rotation of meals. I made it two weeks ago, then a week ago, then Justin made it for meal share. We love it. It’s simple, but it does take some prep. Don’t skimp on the 10 cloves of garlic; it really adds to the flavor. And the anchovies? You can’t taste them directly, but they are crucial for creating the deep, savory flavor that makes this dish what it is. If you cannot find pappardelle pasta, you can substitute an egg fettuccini, but it really is best with pappardelle. The noodles are so chewy and tasty. 

One batch of this pasta feeds me and Justin with some leftovers, or you can feed four and add a side dish. 

Kale with Pappardelle and Sun-dried Tomatoes
From Baltimore Sun Extra 5/5/12
Serves four

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 white onion
10 cloves garlic, sliced thin
10 sun-dried tomatoes (packed in oil), sliced thin
1/4 teaspoon chili flakes
Bring a large pot of well-salted water to boil for the pasta. Meanwhile, heat a sauté pan over medium high heat and add oil. When oil begins to shimmer, add onions and sauté for about one minute or until translucent around the edges. Turn the heat down to medium and add garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, and chili flakes. Cook for two minutes.

2 anchovies
1/4 cup water
Add anchovies and mash with fork. Add water and scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.

1/2 pound dried pappardelle pasta
1 bunch kale (can use curly or lacinato) stemmed, washed, and chopped
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Cook pappardelle. To onion mixture, add kale and cook for about four minutes. Add lemon juice, then add pappardelle to sauté pan and toss together. Season with salt and pepper.

1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmiggiano Regiano
1/4 cup pine nuts or sliced almonds, toasted
Divide pasta among plates and garnish with grated cheese and pine nuts/almonds. 

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