I know—kale has morphed from the it-food to the hipster joke. But that’s a little unfair. It has been around for a long time, and not just as an ornamental plant. You all know by now that dark greens are the good ones, so lay off the jokes, and make these fantastic chips. They are salty, crisp, and (gasp) healthy. It’s another recipe from my upcoming book SALT: The Essential Guide to Cooking with the Most Important Ingredient in Your Kitchen. (You can buy it here – B&N – and here Amazon )
Makes about 4 cups
1 pound curly kale, trimmed and torn into large but manageable bite-sized pieces
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon unrefined salt, divided – try Mali, Hana Flake, Alaea, smoked, or a salt infused with fresh herbs, fennel, paprika, seaweed, dashi, tea, sesame
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Rinse and drain kale leaves, and pat or spin dry. Place in a large bowl and toss with oil and ½ teaspoon of salt.
- Arrange leaves in a single layer on several baking sheets (You’ll probably have to work in batches). Bake for 10-15 minutes, checking at the 5 minute mark to prevent burning (ovens vary—check for your own oven’s hot spot). The leaves should be still green, but browned on the edges. They will crisp a little more after they cool.
- As soon as they come out of the oven, sprinkle with the remaining salt. Cool completely, and serve. Store airtight at room temperature for a day or two.
Veggie Variations – Try this same method to “oven fry” thinly sliced root vegetables, like beets, parsnips, carrots. Use a mandolin to slice thin rounds, or a potato peeler for strips.