Monthly Archives: January 2017

  • Kale and Apple Soup

Kale and Apple Soup

Posted on January 16, 2017

This post was originally published here on February 4, 2015. I’ve since updated the recipe slightly and added new (and better!) photos. Enjoy!

And just like that, we’re right smack into the middle of January. Seriously, how does this time go by so fast? I feel like I say that as we approach the end of every day/month/year. But it just seems to be true. Time flies when you’re having fun, right?

So how are you doing with your New Year’s resolutions? It’s a damn good thing that I didn’t make any regarding food, because whoa nelly would I have broken them all this weekend. Shattered them, actually.

I don’t know what got into me. Well, I know exactly what got into me: a couple of bags of Valentine’s Day candy. Seriously, I don’t know what it is about Valentine’s Day candy, but it’s my favorite and I can’t ever seem to resist it. And with the stores pushing the Holiday’s earlier and earlier each year, I’m doomed from the start of January until mid-February.

Side note: My friend Christina wrote a little Valentine’s Day candy review this past week and it’s a fun read, if you’re into that sort of thing.

So it’s back to soups and smoothies for me for the next couple of days. And this Kale and Apple Soup is one I’ll be enjoying on the regular.

Kale and Apple Soup |

Now, don’t go and immediately write this soup off as some weird dieter recipe. Sure, it’s packed full of greens and it can certainly be labeled “healthy”. But it also has a little bacon, which gives it a rich, luscious taste. And it’s not at all thin, watery and one-dimensional. Those are not good characteristics for soup, or otherwise. Nope. This Kale and Apple Soup has body, a touch of sweetness from some maple syrup and a little bit of heat from a heavy sprinkling of red and black pepper flakes to finish it off. It’s a recipe that I’ve been making for a couple years now. And it’s one I always go back too when I feel the need to be a little bit kinder to my body.

Kale and Apple Soup |

The soup recipe itself is dairy free. Although I do love adding a little drizzle of heavy cream on top. But you can certainly skip that part, if you prefer. No big deal!



Recipe adapted from The Kitchn

Kale and Apple Soup

Serves about 4

Kale and Apple Soup


  • For the soup
  • 1/4 cup chopped bacon
  • 1 large bunch of kale (about 10-ounces), thick stems removed
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4-6 cups chicken or vegetable broth, divided
  • 1/2 yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 Granny smith apple, cored and chopped
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 tsp. maple syrup

  • For Garnish
  • Red pepper flakes
  • Black pepper
  • Heavy cream
  • Maple syrup


  1. In a large heavy-bottom pot over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until it’s just starting to brown, about 1-2 minutes. Add the kale, parsley and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, stirring to coat the kale and parsley in the fat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the kale is wilted, about 5 minutes. Add about 2 cups of the broth and bring the mixture to a simmer. Cook for 10 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and set it aside to cool slightly.
  2. Carefully transfer the kale mixture to your blender and blend on high until smooth. Be careful when transferring and blending hot liquids, and work in batches if necessary. Transfer the blended kale mixture to a clean bowl and set it aside.
  3. Place the pot back over medium-high heat and warm the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, for about 3 minutes or until softened. Stir in the chopped apple, salt and black pepper and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Add 2 cups of the broth and bring the mixture to a simmer. Cook for 5 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and set it aside to cool slightly.
  4. Carefully transfer the apple mixture to your blender and blend on high until smooth. Be careful when transferring and blending hot liquids, and work in batches if necessary. Add the blended apple mixture and the maple syrup to the blended kale mixture, stirring to combine.
  5. Re-heat the soup as necessary, adding additional broth to thin it to your desired consistency. Lade the hot soup into bowls for serving. Top with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes, black pepper and a drizzle of heavy cream and/or maple syrup, if desired.
  • Olive Oil Cornmeal Cake with Grapefruit and Fennel

Olive Oil Cornmeal Cake with Grapefruit and Fennel

Posted on January 9, 2017

So…am I being a total jerk for posting a cake recipe during the second week of January?

If I am, you guys can totally tell me. Be honest.

Well…maybe not too honest. I don’t want my feelings to get hurt.

But here’s the thing: I like cake. I like baking it. I like sharing it with friends. And I like eating it. So I’m going to continue to do those things. Maybe with a little less frequency than I was doing in December. But I’m not going to abandon desserts altogether. Deprivation doesn’t jive well with me. Someone always ends up getting hurt in the end.

Olive Oil Cornmeal Cake with Grapefruit and Fennel |

And this Olive Oil Cornmeal Cake with Grapefruit and Fennel is just barely crossing the threshold into the “dessert” category. The cake itself isn’t too terribly sweet. In fact, I’d say it’s definitely leaning more on the cornbread side of the equation than on the cake side of the equation. And if you skip the glaze, it would totally be acceptable to enjoy a slice (or two!) at breakfast or brunch. No one would judge you.

The fennel seeds were a last minute addition, spurred by the all mighty Google machine. When I was researching recipes, I found several sweet cornmeal cake recipes (usually Italian or Brazilian in origin) that used them. And that sounded like a pretty good idea to me. So I gave it a go. And holy moly, it might just be my favorite part of this recipe. So whatever you do, definitely don’t skip the fennel seeds!

Olive Oil Cornmeal Cake with Grapefruit and Fennel |

I’m sharing this Olive Oil Cornmeal Cake with Grapefruit and Fennel as part of our monthly seasonal eating round-up organized by Becky from Vintage Mixer. At the start of each month, Becky posts a guide outlining which fruits and vegetables are currently at their peak, along with recipe suggestions for how to use them. You can find her January produce guide here. And then myself and a few other bloggers make new recipes to further highlight those ingredients. Check out the links below to see what everyone has created for the month of January. And follow along with the hashtag #eatseasonal on social media to see even more inspiring seasonal recipes!



Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart

Olive Oil Cornmeal Cake with Grapefruit and Fennel

Yield: Maks one 8- or 9-inch cake

Olive Oil Cornmeal Cake with Grapefruit and Fennel


  • For the Cake
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for greasing the pan
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated grapefruit zest

  • For the Glaze
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 1 tsp. finely grated grapefruit zest


  1. Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees. Cut out a round of parchment paper to fit in the bottom of your cake pan. Coat the bottom and sides of your cake pan with a thin layer of olive oil. Then lay the parchment paper-round down in the bottom of the pan. Brush some olive oil on top of the parchment paper-round. Set your prepared pan aside.
  2. In the bowl of your mixer with the whisk attachment, combine the olive oil, eggs, sugar and grapefruit juice. Add the flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt and mix until the flour is just incorporated. Whisk in the fennel seeds and grapefruit zest.
  3. Pour the cake batter into your prepared pan and smooth the surface. Transfer the pan to your pre-heated oven and bake for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean and the top is golden. Remove the pan from the oven and set it on a wire rack to cool for 20 minutes. Then run a knife around the edge of the cake to help separate it from the sides of the pan and invert the pan onto a plate. Remove and discard the parchment paper from the cake. Then carefully re-invert the cake back onto the wire rack to finish cooling.
  4. While the cake is cooling, combine all of the ingredients for the glaze in a small bowl until smooth.
  5. Pour the glaze over the cooled cake. Slice and serve.
  6. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 2 days.

January Eat Seasonal Recipes


Healthy Tangerine Julius Smoothie by Letty’s Kitchen

Leek and Turnip Soup by Vintage Mixer

Apple Almond Bircher Meusli with Winter Fruits by Simple Bites

Saucy Sweet Potatoes with Coconut Curry and Mint by Healthy Seasonal Recipes

Garlic and Herb Spaghetti Squash Boats by She Likes Food

Peanut Butter Crusted Sweet Potato Fries by JoyFoodSunshine

Raw Brussels Sprouts Salad with Harissa Vinaigrette by Project Domestication

Winter Cauliflower Rice Bowl with Cranberry-Mustard Sauce by Cafe Johnsonia

Meyer Lemon Coconut Panna Cotta by Kitchen Confidante

Maple Orange Teriyaki Salmon Bowls by Flavor the Moments

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