Let's start things off by acknowledging that I'm late to the kale chip trend. But better late than never right?
Last week I picked up a beautiful bunch of kale, along with a refrigerator full of delicious fruits and vegetables at my new favourite grocer. The problem was, in my excitement when presented with a fantastic array of produce, I bought way more than would fit in the fridge. So instead of undertaking the impossible task of fitting the kale in an already over stuffed fridge I settled on making kale chips, and seeing what all the fuss was about.
The process is simple. Remove the kale leaves from their stalks, wash, dry and lightly coat with oil and salt and bake. After making a couple of batches I found the lower the temperature you bake the kale chips at the better. The chips remain crispy for much longer (in fact 1 week later the last of kale chips are still crisp). Also, a lower temperature ensures the kale stays beautifully green.
A lot of recipes call for salting after the chips are baked, however I found the kale chips are best salted before baking. The reason for this is twofold. Firstly the oil helps the salt stick to the chips, and secondly, I believe the salt helps dry the chips out better. Anyway, that's my experience. A word of caution though. Go easy on the seasoning because as the chips shrink in size while baking this will increase the saltiness.
As far as salt goes feel free to experiment with salts and other seasonings. My first batch used a flaky grey sea salt I picked up on my last trip to the United States and they were divine. The second batch used truffle salt, for a little bit of decadence. I also think they'd be wonderful with a lemon pepper salt, or a smokey salt. Well, that's the plan for the next couple of batches I'll be baking because this is definitely one trend I'll be following because these chips are addictive. So much so it was a struggle to not eat the whole of the first batch straight from the oven.
So tell me, have you tried kale chips?
- 1 bunch of kale
- 1 tbs olive oil or oil of your choice
- sea salt
- Preheat the oven to 120 celsius (250 fahrenheit) and line 2 large baking trays with baking paper. Remove the kale from the stalk and tear the leaves into pieces, keeping in mind that the kale will shrink when baked. Wash and dry well in a clean tea towel. It's important the kale chips are dry before baking otherwise your chips won't be crisp. Don't skip this step!
- Toss the kale in the olive oil and a sprinkling of salt until it's coated in the seasoned oil. Go easy on the salt here as you can always add a little more after baking if they aren't seasoned enough.
- Divide the kale between the trays and ensure that the kale is not overlapping to ensure maximum crispiness when baked. Bake for 10 minutes before turning the leaves over and baking for another 10 to 15 minutes.