I have a confession to make. I don’t really like kale.
I’m almost embarrassed to admit this, I’m probably the only holistic nutritionist around who doesn’t love this leafy green. I’ve tried, believe me, I’ve tried. Raw salads are ok but whenever I try to steam it or saute it with garlic I (and my entire family) have a hard time getting it down. Until now.
Look how beautiful it is.
I WANT to like it so I just keep trying.
It seems that everyone these days is raving about kale chips so I decided it was time to get on the bandwagon and see for myself. Is it more hype or is there really something to these little green dehydrated chips? When my husband and my boys saw the kale on the counter they looked at me suspiciously and asked, “What is that doing here?”
“Just a little experiment,” I told them. “You don’t have to eat it.”
Well, can I tell you that we are on our 3rd bunch of kale in 5 days? No lie. The kale chips are a hit! If you don’t believe me, try for yourself and tell me what you think. Here’s the easy-peasy recipe I’ve been using:
Zesty Kale Chips
- 1 bunch organic kale
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- juice of about 1/4 lemon
1. Wash and thoroughly dry the kale. (If it remains too wet you may end up with soggy chips).
2. Remove leaves from stem and tear into bite-sized pieces.
3. Place in a bowl and add olive oil and sea salt. Massage the oil into the leaves with your hands so they are evenly coated.
4. Spread the kale on a parchment-lined baking pan and squeeze a bit of lemon juice over the leaves. Place into your oven at its lowest temperature (in my case, it’s 170 degrees) and dry for about 2-2 1/2 hours.
You can enjoy them immediately or store in an air-tight container. In my household they’re gone within 24 hours.
Why did I keep persisting with kale? Because as a nutritionist, I know how incredibly nutrient dense it is and I wanted it in my diet. Here are a few reasons why we should all have this superfood in our diet:
- kale contains a particularly high concentration of carotenoids and flavonoids, which are known to be key nutrients to combat oxidative stress. They provide protection against atherosclerosis, cancer and cataracts.
- it lowers cholesterol – its fibre content binds in the intestines with bile acids (which are made of cholesterol) and thereby eliminates cholesterol from the body
- as a cruciferous vegetable, it offers excellent levels of glucosinolates, which have been shown to provide protection against cancer (particularly colon, breast, bladder, prostate and ovarian cancers)
- isothiocyanates, derived from kale’s glucosinolates, + kale’s sulfur content both support the liver’s natural detox processes. Elimination of toxins, both environmental and food-borne, is essential to living a vibrant and healthy life
- excellent source of Vitamin K – which is necessary for proper blood clotting and the synthesis of proteins for healthy bones
- and if you still need convincing, kale is also an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin C and manganese; and a very good source of calcium, potassium, iron, magnesium and folate
Here they are…..latest batch of kale chips. I sprinkled some sesame seeds on the leaves just before popping them in the oven. This was a great addition, boosting the level of calcium per serving. Two cups = same amount of calcium in a glass of milk.
I made these kale chips this afternoon….gone by dinnertime.
What a great way to get more greens into your diet!