Many 2-year-olds won’t eat a plateful of sauteed greens even if they’re cooked in bacon, and my daughter – an excellent eater most of the time – was no exception.
When she was a toddler, I could usually get by with mixing shredded greens into a few scrambled eggs, but much was my delight when I discovered the kid liked kale soup. This one is mildly sweet with a bit of apple, and it has that beloved bacon-y edge that goes so well with sauteed greens.
This version gets a little naughty with pancetta and a dollop of creme fraiche, but you can lighten it up by omitting the pancetta (use 2 tablespoons of olive oil instead to cook the greens) and swapping the creme fraiche for yogurt. Vegetarians can substitute vegetable stock or water instead of the chicken stock and skip the pancetta. To make it vegan, take out the swirl of creaminess at the end.
Soup like this has few rules. I don’t peel the apple or de-stem the kale. All that roughage is good for you, and dinner comes together in the blink of an eye.
My daughter is now 8 and still saying “more, please!” when I make this kale and apple soup. So are the adults.