Care of Karen Soper and Lisa Pitman

In the realm of fast food there is a plethora of options for vegetarians and non-vegetarians. We can literally go to every street corner and find something to eat. Books have been written about our “Fast Food Nation”, scrapping and devouring our land resources, contributing to epidemic proportions of disease and illness, putting an entire food system into an inequitable state, and yet food to us must be fast. Must it be real?

It is clear that the foods I am talking about are not really food. They are derived, manufactured, concocted, packaged and then digested. Calories, well we know the sad story there. However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel, and we can choose it – plant based foods that are easy to cook.

Kale, as so many healthy, life-giving plant based foods are, is an example of a real fast food. This amazing curly-leafed, dark green vegetable is a member of the same family as cabbage, collards and brussel sprouts. It is an excellent source of vitamin A, B6, riboflavin, and manganese (an important part of superoxide dismutase – the powerful antioxidant enzyme). Kale provides more nutritional value for fewer calories than almost any other food. It is also a good source of fibre helping to reduce cholesterol levels and keep blood-sugar levels under control.

In a matter of minutes, kale can be steamed (turning it a beautiful bright green), tossed with olive oil, sea salt and a squeeze of lemon, and added to your plate. There are many ways to enjoy kale and I hope that you count this green vegetable as your number one fast food!