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Kale one of Denmark's most important vegetables
Slowly regaining popularity
Although kale's popularity has declined, if you had asked the peasants of the 17th century what the national dish should be, kale soup would most likely be their winner.
However, thanks to New Nordic Cuisine and TV programs such as Kålkællingerne ('Cabbage bitches'), the vegetable is slowly regaining its popularity.
Can be eaten all year round
Cabbage will also be the main theme at next year's national cooking championship, Madkamp.
"Curly kale is by far the most important historical cabbage variety. Virtually all households used to grow it in their vegetable gardens," Jensen explained to the broadcaster. "It can be eaten all year round, and in the days before the refrigerator was invented, kale would keep fresh and edible even after the frost had melted. Some would say that it actually tastes better when it has a little frost on in."
A surprising vegetable
While doing his research, the food historian noticed that no comprehensive work has been done. He had to piece his knowledge together from many sources, including Else-Marie Boyhus's book 'Vegetables – a kitchen story' from 1996, which contains 15 pages on cabbage.
Because the vegetable has not been used very inventively in the past hundred years, Jensen believes many food experts would be surprised to know how many different varieties there are.
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