I first tried kale chips at the ultra healthy Brooklyn restaurant, Sun In Bloom, where I got a free sample with my veggie wrap. I’m pretty adventurous when it comes to food, but I can’t say I expected to like the dark green snack. I was surprised to find it delicious. Some boast that you can substitute kale chips for potato chips, and it’s not as far-fetched as you would think.
I’m a little leery of the term “super food,” but if anything fits that title, it’s kale. This leafy green is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, manganese and dietary fiber, according to WHFoods. The health benefits of kale have not been thoroughly researched, but we do know that it’s a rich source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients. You can buy kale chips from health food stores, or other crunchy kale snacks. I decided to make my own.
Kale Chip Recipe:
1) Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
2) Start with one bunch of kale. Tear the leaves away from the stems in bite-size pieces. Rinse the leaves and dry, preferably in a salad-spinner.
3) Spread the pieces evenly over a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
4) Sprinkle the leaves with olive oil (about a half tablespoon per sheet), and salt. You can also season your chips with any spices that appeal to you. I choose to use garlic salt and dried onion flakes.
5) Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until the edges of the leaves are brown but not burnt.
My homemade chips turned out airy and delicious, and the recipe was extremely easy. You can also mix vinegar in with your oil for a salt-and-vinegar flavor. Anyone following a raw diet can make these chips in a dehydrator.
Most of the calories in your kale chips will come from the oil. Raw kale has only 34 calories per cup, chopped and weighing 2.4 ounces (CalorieKing.com). A half tablespoon of olive oil has about 60 calories. A rough caloric estimate of a serving that starts with two cups of raw kale is about 128 calories for an entire baking sheet.
January 14th, 2011