What’s with all the buzz about kale chips? It seems I’m one of the very few people that hasn’t made or even tried them. I mean, how good can they be?
Don't get me wrong. I know kale is nutritious and delicious. It’s a common green in our household (with its long growing season - you can find it almost all year long in southwestern BC and from spring to fall in the rest of the province) but we typically sauté it and season it to match whatever we are cooking.
I love it.It’s a bonus that it’s such a nutrient dense ingredient, loaded with vitamins A, C and K and even a bit of calcium. I’ve always been partial to jazzing kale up with a little balsamic vinegar, onions, feta cheese and olive oil. But, according to everyone around me, there seems to be some mystical addictive power to these nutrient dense little chips when they are baked. Mission accepted.
Here’s the method I used to make our first batch of kale chips.
- Wash kale - I used rainbow kale in this experiment – but I am told almost any kale type will do
- Pat kale dry - a clean dish/tea towel works well
- Trim the leaves from the stalks - just pull them off in large “chip” sized pieces
- Drizzle a little olive oil on your hands and rub the leaves. This gives them good coverage while using less oil than you would if you drizzled it all over them (a tip from resident culinary expert, Andrea)
- Add a touch of seasoning . Dry seasonings can be added to the oil before rubbing the leaves, or sprinkled after the oil has been applied - remember the seasonings concentrate as they shrink so a little goes a long way.
- Experiment with flavours - try a little cayenne or smoked paprika for a little heat, garlic or onion powder for a savoury hit, or use some of your favourite dry herbs to see how they compliment the hearty taste of kale.
- Spread the chips evenly on a baking sheet in a single layer so they cook/dry evenly at 325°F for 10 to 15 minutes. Watch that they don’t brown and “roast,” but just dry and crisp up
Result.... they ARE all that and a bag o’ (kale) chips!
I really didn’t expect them to be such a tasty crispy addictive little snack. I’m now a believer. Kale chips are here to stay. If you haven’t yet had the pleasure, give them a try. You might be surprised by which family member dives into this crispy pile of veggies.
Do you have any favourite kale chip recipes, or other creative veggie snack discoveries?