Named for its key ingredient — native callaloo leaves — hearty callaloo is a distinctly Caribbean dish, with differing versions from Jamaica to Trinidad. Since callaloo greens aren't widely available in the United States, this thick, nourishing soup, with a flavor akin to Southern greens, can be prepared with kale or spinach instead. In the islands, callaloo is typically served over cooked rice (try brown rice), making it a great one-pot meal, perhaps served with cooked plantains.
2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound fresh kale or spinach, stems removed, chopped
1 cup trimmed, sliced okra (fresh or frozen)
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
½ jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced
6 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
½ pound extra lean ham or smoked turkey, diced
¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1 tablespoon fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
Freshly-ground pepper, to taste
Before you begin: Wash your hands.
- Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic. Cook and stir for about 5 minutes, or until the onion is translucent.
- Remove from heat. Add the kale or spinach, then the okra, sweet potato and jalapeño pepper.
- Pour the broth over the vegetable mixture. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cover. Simmer for about 15 minutes until the vegetables are tender.
- Stir in the ham, lime juice and thyme. Continue cooking for about 2 to 3 minutes until the mixture is heated through. Season with pepper.
- To make callaloo less spicy, use less jalapeño pepper.
- In Trinidad and Tobago, ½ cup coconut milk is added as another cooking liquid. Since coconut milk is high in saturated fat, it is not used in this recipe.
Serving size: 1½ cup
Calories: 130; Calories from fat: 45; Total fat: 5g; Saturated fat: 1g; Trans fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 10mg; Sodium: 470mg; Total carbohydrate: 14g; Dietary fiber: 3g; Sugars: 3g; Protein: 9g