January 12, 2022. Kale Chips. What every kale leaf wants to be. They’re shockingly good. Addictive. So good that Kathy, who always pretended to be allergic to kale, now requests them. Frequently. Ever since Holly flash-roasted them for us a few years ago in Napa, CA.
Now my great buddy, Matt, has shown me another Way. Flash-Fried Kale Chips. Right on the stovetop in a pan. No pre-heating the oven and peeking in every minute or so to make sure the 550 F doesn’t vaporize them. Just shake the pan every couple of minutes while they fry in plain sight.
They look just as cool: dark green with ruffled golden brown edges. They taste exactly the same. Still cheap. Still near zero calories. Ladies and gentlemen, start your burners.
What to do
Not much. Wash and dry the leaves. Cut out the stems; they’re too tough to eat. Tear the leaf halves into bite-size pieces.
Toss the kale pieces in a large bowl with a very little bit of very good olive oil and some sea salt. Toss thoroughly. You want to completely gloss the kale. Just a gloss – not a thick coat, not dripping with olive oil.
Put the pieces in a frying pan you’ve lightly coated with olive oil. One layer, not a pile. Turn the burner to high heat. Begin to shake the pan occasionally after you begin to hear the sizzle and pop. When most or all of the ruffled edges turn a dark golden brown, take them out. Let your kale chips cool and crisp on a paper towel for five minutes. Eat them anytime within an hour.
Chances are, you’re eating them right away. So have another bowlful tossed and ready for the second shift on the stovetop.
They’re amazingly light and crispy. They retain their shape and crispness for an hour or more, so you can make them in advance. They’re delicious. They’re what kale always wanted to be.
Every Thing Is Everything
“Just three servings of vegetables each day — especially cruciferous ones like broccoli, cabbage, kale, cauliflower and brussels sprouts — cut the risk of prostate cancer by almost half, according to Hutchinson Center research. While all vegetables help decrease risk, cruciferous vegetables are the heavyweights. It’s believed that vegetables protect against cancer because they contain a wide variety of phytochemicals, many of which increase enzyme activity to detoxify cancer-promoting compounds in the body.” Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. The study showed a 35% lower cancer risk for men eating 28 vegetable servings weekly – and a 44% lower risk for guys who ate just three servings of cruciferous vegetables each week.
The kale itself: about 1 cent and 1 calorie per chip. Go ahead, have 20 or 30. That’ll get you more than twice your daily Vitamin A requirement and significantly more than your Vitamin C requirement. And some dietary fiber. For about 25 cents. A very little bit of olive oil will add 15 calories to your feeding frenzy and 10 cents to your cost.
For $1.29, you get almost as many Frito-Lay’s potato chips in their 2.75-ounce pack. You also get 412 calories! Yup. Four times the cost; ten times the calories. Try the kale, huh?
Let’s Do The Math
I like to dance, but you have to be a dancin’ fool for more than an hour to burn off the potato chips. The kale? You’ll torch the kale calories before you make it through the album version of Light My Fire.