Because making veggies into chips combines two of my favorite things!!!!
One of my favorite vegetables out there is kale. It is so rich in nutrients and so versatile. I was in Whole Foods this week and they were having a kale sale, so I picked some up with no real plan for what I was going to do with it. Last night lentil soup was on the menu and I wanted something with a crunch for a different texture to go with it, and when I spotted the kale in the fridge I immediately thought, “KALE CHIPS!”.
(Here is the lentil soup recipe. Many people asked for the recipe when I posted a picture of our dinner! I posted it on my IG account [@foodformyhouse], but figured I’d link it here too.)
The chips came out perfectly crispy, and were so satisfying paired with the warm hearty soup. So, I figured since I loved them so much, and since I thought pairing them with soup was a fun idea, I want to share how I made them!
I really really love lacinato (or Tuscan) kale. It’s leaves are more flat than curly kale (making it more ideal for making chips, IMO), and it has bumps running throughout. I read it has the nickname “dinosaur kale” because it kind of looks like dinosaur skin. As far as flavor goes, it has a bit more of a milder, more delicate flavor than curly kale. Here is a picture so you know what I am talking about and can find it in the store:
Ok so what you need:
1 bunch of lacinato kale
Pre-heat oven to 250 degrees. (The idea is to cook the kale low & slow which dries it out PERFECTLY!)
Line 2 sheet trays with tin foil & set aside.
Untie your kale bunch and separate the leaves from the thick stem in the middle, leaving them as long halves. You can cut them away or just run your pointer and middle finger down either side and tear them away. They don’t have to be perfect. As the stem gets closer to the broad top of the leaf it gets softer, so some leaves may be small enough where you can just leave the leaf whole and cut the thick end of the stem off. Put them in a colander and wash the leaves, then run them through a salad spinner to dry them well. You want them to be nice and dry which will help them crisp up nicely.
(side note: after you wash your leaves rinse the left over stems in the colander and then throw them in a freezer bag to freeze. Save all your veggie scraps throughout the week like this, then when you have a couple bags full toss all the scraps into a crock pot with some garlic cloves and bay leaves, cover with water and simmer all day to make your own veggie stock. Strain and store broth in the freezer and/or fridge! I never spend my $$$ on veggie broth anymore.)
Separate the leaves into 2 equal bunches on each sheet, drizzle each bunch with a small amount of olive oil, then salt, pepper & garlic powder all to taste. Toss with your fingers to coat evenly, then arrange the leaves on the tray so there is as little over lap as possible.
Stick the trays in the oven and bake for 75 – 90 minutes until the leaves are perfectly crisp.
I have to say that while my husband and I were filling up on a veggie soup, my parents and brother were eating hamburgers and I suggested putting the crunchy kale on their burgers, and they loved it!! So — for all you meat eaters out there, you can make these next time you make your burgers as a light side or burger topper too!
Kale, a veggie that can be loved by all. 😉