Kale chips are all the rage now, and here’s how I personally make them. They are incredibly easy and delicious, and you can season them up in fun ways if you like. Did I mention that kale is a superfood? To quote webMD’s analysis: One cup of kale contains 36 calories, 5 grams of fiber, and 15% of the daily requirement of calcium and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), 40% of magnesium, 180% of vitamin A, 200% of vitamin C, and 1,020% of vitamin K. It is also a good source of minerals copper, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus. See the link for even more info on its benefits. Meantime, here’s a crowd-pleasing way to roast it up.
Unbundle your bunch of kale, and wash the leaves and spin dry. Starting from the top of each leaf, run your hand down the stalk (toward the base), pulling all of the leafy stuff off the tough stem. Break up the leaves into bite-size chunks. If still kinda damp, I recommend respinning to get all remaining water off because they roast better that way. Divide the leaves onto 2 cookies sheets, and drizzle some good extra virgin olive oil over them (not too much, 1-2 T per tray is plenty; if you want them even lower calorie, just spray with olive oil cooking spray). Now get in there with your hands and “massage” the kale, squeezing the leaves around until everything is well-coated. Spread the leaves back around evenly on the trays and sprinkle with salt. You can also add any other seasonings at this point: curry, hot pepper, a little teriyaki or tamari with some sesame seeds, etc. Use your imagination.
Put trays into a preheated 300F oven. If your oven is really hot like mine, I sometimes just set it to 275F. Let the kale roast for about 10 minutes and check on it. Really try to avoid letting it brown cuz that affects the taste and can make it bitter. Continue roasting in 5 minute increments until the leaves are completely dried out. Remove from oven, let cool, and pour into an open bowl. Do not refrigerate or cover– they will get uncrunchy and no one will want to eat them. Now you can just snack on the kale directly, or crumble some of the leaves over salads, rice, whatever. I pack sandwich baggies of kale for my kids’ lunches (though don’t zip the baggies shut because you risk losing the crunch). This is also a great afterschool snack for the kids to munch on when plopped down in front of the TV or doing their homework. Please share any interesting seasonings you may have tried!