Homemade Kale Chips

The mighty leaf kale has gotten some strong mainstream attention over the last few years, as the supergreen revolution has taken a hold of many food fanatics. What’s the deal with kale?

It’s a leafy green vegetable that’s extremely rich in iron, fiber, and antioxidants. Fighting power to keep you lean, clean, and regular. Substitute kale for boring lettuce or even spinach in any recipe, and taste the difference. And you really can taste the difference! Kale has a robust, hearty, earthy flavor that reflects its inherently strengthening properties.

Afraid of buying kale for it might end up sitting around unattended in your refrigerator, awaiting a slow and slimy death stuck behind the Chinese takeout boxes and jumbo jar of mayonnaise? There is one fool-proof way to eat an entire bunch. Make a batch of baked kale chips. Yes, like potato chips. Only made without the potato, and not fried. Sound crazy? It is a little crazy. But entirely delicious.

The beauty of kale chips is two-fold: they replace fatty, fried potato chips (at least for one sitting); and they supply a healthy dose of all the fiber and phytochemicals kale possesses. I’ve made them for roommates, family members, and even toddlers, and they all agree — kale chips rock.

Kale chips can be tricky to make because, although they are only three or so ingredients, it’s all in getting the technique just right — as in making the perfect potato chip or French fry. After a few years of testing with haphazard recipes of kale chips in the oven, I’ve come up with my fave yet. The result — a crisp, salty, slightly sweet kale chip that is truly irresistible. Try it for yourself.

Kale Chips
Ingredients:
1 bunch kale (any kind will do), roughly chopped into 2-inch pieces
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons gomasio (a sesame seed/sea salt blend from the Asian store or the health food store)
OR
1 teaspoon sea salt

Procedure:

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Combine kale, oil, and seasoning in a large bowl. Massage with hands to coat completely and lightly soften. Place on one or two baking sheets in one even layer (crowding the kale will result in unevenly baked chips).
2. Place in oven and bake 20 minutes, tossing kale every 10 minutes. If not crisped, bake an additional 5 minutes.
3. Remove and enjoy thoroughly.


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