Kale is a leafy green that in modern times has been most often seen on the buffet table as decoration, but in 2013, it is expected to be the next big thing in healthy food.
While this is a very basic kale chip recipe it can be adapted by adding spice and seasonings that you like.
1 bunch of kale
2 tbs. of extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp. natural sea salt
Wash and remove the stalks from the kale then rip the kale into bite sized pieces.
In a large bowl combine the oil and salt. Gently mix the kale in and coat it well.
Place the coated kale on a dehydrator sheet and dry for 4-6 hours at 115 degrees or until they are crisp.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the coated kale on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake until the edges are brown but not burnt for about 10 minutes.
While it has recently started gaining attention with products such as kale chips, kale is anything but new.
Kale is a member of the cabbage family, and comes in a variety of color and types.
Curly kale is the most common variety found in stores, while dinosaur kale or dino kale is less common and has long straight leaves that are very dark green.
Red kale is the third most common type and has a purple color with leaves that are short and a little curly.
Kale, like most dark green leafy vegetables, is loaded with nutrients and low in calories.
It has fiber, calcium, vitamins B6, A, C and K and trace minerals. On top of that there are only 36 calories in a cup of cooked kale.
Kale grows the best north of the Masson-Dixon line because it likes the cooler weather. Kale not only grows better in the colder regions, the cold turns some of the starch found in the leaves into sugar.
This crop, with its ability to grow in colder areas, became a staple of European diets late into the Middle Ages.
In Scotland kale became synonymous with phrases such as kale-pot, kaleyard and ‘cauld kale het up.’
Every kitchen had a kale-pot for cooking and it was rare that soup didn’t have kale in it. Kaleyard, a phrase used in J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan, is the kitchen garden. ‘Cauld kale het up’ describes a story that is told and re-told.
Like most foods, kale does have health benefits and can be used to help the body become healthy. One of kale’s 45 different flavonoids, documented by researchers, contributes to its ability to avoid chronic inflammation and oxidative stress.
Kale has been used to help detox the body and liver
It is a good food to support the cardiovascular system with its ability to help lower cholesterol levels, and research has shown it has cancer-lowering benefits.
There are so many ways to add more kale to a diet, such as a kale salad, adding kale to eggs or potatoes and mashing them, and adding it to tacos or in veggie burgers. Let’s not forget adding kale to the green smoothie.
If you don’t care for the way one type of kale tastes then try one of the other 40 varieties of kale.
Personally, I prefer the baby kale as it is tender and a little sweeter in salads. The curly kale is my preferred choice in chips but the dino kale is good as chips too.
Kale chips are the hot, trendy “it” food of the moment. Just a word of warning: don’t eat them before going to an important meeting. The chips tend to get stuck in your teeth, so keep a toothbrush handy to avoid any embarrassing situations.