Prep the kale: Cut off the hard stems and discard. Cut/tear leaves into "slightly bigger than bite-sized" pieces. (Note: They shrink in the oven so don't go too small.)
Wash kale: Soak, then swish around in water. (Fyi, simple rinsing under a running tap is unlikely to get all the dirt off so dunk them completely.) Repeat with fresh water. Dry.
Wet leaves = soggy chips! So dry completely. Ideally with a salad spinner. If you don't have one, give it a good shake over the sink and blot with paper towels. If you have time, you can even air dry.
Preheat oven: Once you've got your leaves washed and dried, set your oven to 350F / 175C.
Mix together 1T of ghee (for a buttery taste) + 1T of grapeseed oil in a small bowl. (Otherwise, just use 2T of oil.) Add a pinch of salt. Optional: Add 2 pinches of smoked paprika or other spices.
Don't use olive oil; it changes flavour when heated. Grapeseed oil is neutral & has a high smoke point. Ghee also has a high smoke point but don't overdue it--otherwise it'll taste *too* buttery.
Add a spoonful of oil mix to the bottom of a large mixing bowl. If you were to instead pour the oil over the leaves, the oil would clump to only a few leaves, instead of evenly distributing.
Grab a handful of kale and lightly toss with your hands in the bowl. Then grab another handful to mix in.
Continue mixing in handfuls of kale until you've used up 1/2 of the washed kale. Really massage that oil evenly into all the leaves.
Oily leaves = soggy chips! Only use enough oil to lightly coat the leaves. They should never be drowning in oil.
Spread the kale onto a baking tray in a *single* layer. Squishing is okay but do not stack. Use a Silpat or parchment paper so you don't have to scrap off baked-on kale bits from your tray.
Pop the tray into the oven. Bake at 350F for 10 minutes to start.
If you have a 2nd baking tray, start mixing the next batch. OR: (1) Wait for 1st batch, taste test, then experiment with different oils+spices, (2) store remaining kale for tomorrow's chips.
After 10 minutes, check on the kale. If the edges don't look crispy, come back in 2 minutes. 15 minutes should be the max time needed for them to crisp up.
Take the tray out of the oven. Sprinkle sea salt evenly over chips. Now is also the time for some fresh cracked pepper. Or even sprinkle lightly with fresh lemon/lime juice. So many flavour combos!
Transfer to serving bowl and enjoy without guilt.
- 1.0bnch curly kale
- 1.0Tbsp ghee, aka clarified butter (optional)
- 1.0Tbsp neutral cooking oil (like grapeseed)
- 3.0pch sea salt
- 2.0pch smoked paprika (optional)
- 2.0pch pepper (optional)
- 1.0tsp lemon/lime juice (optional)