Processing day at the farm generally sees the interns going home with the leftover or unsaleable produce. Today, it was a bunch of hole-y kale that was fine, but wouldn't look good in a farmer's market bag. I couldn't pass up the chance to try my hand at making something with kale. It's not a food that I've found myself ever using. I've honestly always been a bit apprehensive about using it... It's a "popular food" or a "super food" and I never know what to do with those! Is it really good or is it just hype? Then my boss told me that if I wanted something easy to do with kale, I should definitely try kale chips. Once she explained how easy they were to make, I was sold. Now that I've successfully made them (on the first try!) I decided I needed to tell more people about just how easy they can be to make!
Step 1: Gather your equipment and ingredients. At the bare minimum you'll need:
- A baking sheet
- A sheet of parchment paper
- A sharp knife
- A bowl or bag for the olive oil
- Fresh kale
- Olive Oil
- Seasoning (This is your preference. Many people use salt and possible another herb. I've also heard parmesan cheese!)
Step 2: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 3: De-stem your kale by cutting the leaf closely along the stem, thus, removing the leaf from the stem.
Step 4: Cut your kale into chip-sized pieces. The kale will shrink some in the oven, so go a bit bigger than what you want.
Step 5: Cover your kale pieces in olive oil. There are many ways to go about doing this. My method was slightly messy and time consuming but it resulted in less excess olive oil on the kale chips. I lightly dipped a small bit of the kale in olive oil then spread it over the rest of piece with my fingers until the piece was completely covered. The first batch I did I completely submerged the kale in the oil which resulted in very oily chips. But if you're into oil, go for it. Another method I've heard is putting the kale pieces in a large plastic bag with some oil and shaking until the pieces are covered. I think I'll try that method next time.
Step 6: Place your oil-covered kale pieces on the parchment paper covered cooking sheet.
Step 7: Place in the oven and bake for 10 minutes. The edges should be somewhat brown and crispy when they're done. Check to make sure the chips are at the right crispiness level that you want.
Step 8: Lay out on a paper towel-covered plate to soak up excess olive oil.
Step 9: Store extra chips in a sealed plastic bag in the cupboard.
Step 10: Enjoy!
See? Super simple. If I would have known how easy it was, I would have made them a looong time ago. Below I've included pictures of the comparison between the olive oil soaked chips and the chips with less olive oil. The soaked chips are a lot more brown and crispy (and more oily) and the chips with less oil still look more like kale but a slightly less crispy. The soaked chips are on the left and the light oil chips are on the right.