After my Saturday visit to the farmers market, I had a large bunch of kale at the top of my bag. Our little dog, Tink, stole some and was sneaking around the house to find a quiet place to eat it. We were so impressed with his healthy choice!
I am trying train my other children to make these same healthy choices. As many moms do, I've fallen back into the habit of sandwiching quick meals between driving to school, therapies and home. And, as usual, my kids have been affected by these low nutrition meals. It's interesting because we notice the beginnings of negative attitudes towards veggies which tells me they aren't getting enough color on their plates at mealtime. So in an effort to pull us back to center, we had a little cooking activity to make the greens more desirable to choose. My children are like most others. If they get a say in what they do, they will be much more enthusiastic about participating (or eating, as the case may be).
Enter . . . Kale!
This wonderful "superfood" is high in vitamins A and C, folic acid, calcium and iron. Kale of many varieties is in season and readily available at the farmers markets. It's a common addition to boost smoothies, and it also makes delicious kale chips. This recipe for kale chips is really worth a try, because if your children enjoy eating kale, it's a huge bonus to them nutritionally, and a welcome substitution to potato chips for snacking. This is also a super easy recipe to make with them.
I used both Russian kale which is flat, and a curly kale - curly worked better for this recipe.
Just tear the leaves off of the tough center rib. Then rinse the leaves thoroughly and pat them dry or dry them in a salad spinner. Place the clean, dry leaves onto baking pans lined with parchment or foil for easy cleanup. Evenly distribute the leaves across the 2 pans. Make sure they are in a single layer, otherwise they will steam a bit and take longer to become crispy.
Pour 1 Tablespoon of olive oil over each batch. Toss and scrunch them to thoroughly coat the leaves with oil so the seasoning sticks. Sprinkle with the sea salt and garlic powder and toss the kale again - making sure to coat the leaves evenly.
Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the leaves become crispy. When checking on the leaves, just toss or mix them around to help them crisp. Don't worry if you've crowded your pans and the kale seems hopelessly steamed - just toss the leaves and cook a little longer, and the leaves will crisp.
Keeps well stored in an airtight container for 2 days.