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Sunday, April 7, 2013

Guilt Free Snack: Kale Chips

Kale has gained a lot of popularity in the last year or so, commonly being touted as a "superfood" for it's great nutritional benefits. This low calorie leafy vegetable is packed with Vitamin K and also Vitamin, C, Vitamin A, Magnesium, Vitamin B6 and Calcium.

While it's more bitter for me personally than the other leafy greens, I have definitely gotten used to the taste since incorporating it into my diet. I sometimes replace lettuce mixes with kale these days. I also enjoy it in fresh pressed juices (kale-pineapple-mango is a delicious combination).

This weekend, I decided to make kale chips. Kale chips are SO easy to make and require very minimal ingredients:

* Kale
* Olive Oil
* Salt
* Cayenne Pepper (Optional)

  1. Cut the kale into large chip-sized pieces and wash. (Tip: When you cook the kale, the size is going to shrink, so you may want larger pieces and more kale than you might think.)
  2. Dry the raw kale. This step is very important because if the kale is not totally dry, it will steam more than it will turn crunchy.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Season kale with salt and cayenne pepper sparingly. You can season however you like - some people prefer lemon and sunflower seeds for example.
  5. Spread kale pieces onto a baking pan. Try not to have too much overlap of the leaves, as this might also have that steaming effect on the kale versus the crunchy effect we are going for.
  6. Place in oven and let cook for ~ 15-20 minutes. I've read some recipes where it says you only need 10 minutes but mine didn't fully cook and get the right texture until around 15-20 minutes. After 15 minutes I pulled out some chips, and then let the chips that weren't cooked yet cook a little bit longer. You know the kale chip is done when you see a little brown coloring on the corners, and the leaf has taken on a chip-like texture.

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