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Simple Cooking: Quick Crispy Kale Chips

By Anthony Todd in Food on Nov 12, 2012 4:20PM

Photo by tinemendoza.
Sometimes, a recipe is so good and so easy that it instantaneously makes it into our permanent repetoire. One way to tell? If we cook it five times in the first two weeks that we've known it. This quick crispy kale recipe is easily in that category. Fast, healthy, delicious and snack-tastic, we promise you won't be able to stop eating these.

Kale is hot right now, but some of us aren't kale-come-lately's. We've been kale-obsessed for years, but it can be a tiny bit tough to eat. Raw kale is tasty, but sometimes makes our jaws tired. Cooked kale is great, but it takes time and doesn't keep all that well in the fridge. This is the perfect compromise. We adapted the recipe from Jacques Pepin's wonderful "More Fast Food My Way," and like many of his recipes, it's easy to make your own.

By the way, in case you were wondering - there's nothing fried about these chips, and they cost about 10 cents more than the price of a bundle of kale. Just trust us on this one.

Quick Crispy Kale Chips
Inspired by Jacques Pepin

1 bundle of kale
Olive Oil
Crushed red pepper
Sugar (optional)
Garlic salt (optional)

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Rip the kale leaves from the stems/ribs and tear it into bite-sized pieces. Wash and dry thoroughly.

In a large bowl, toss the kale pieces with about a tablespoon of olive oil.

Lay the kale out on an un-greased baking sheet. Sprinkle generously with salt and add crushed red pepper (plus sugar and/or other spices) to taste. Don't add too much, as the kale will reduce in size and be intensely flavorful.

Bake the whole thing for 20 minutes, or until your kitchen starts to smell like kale. The kale may have turned a bit brownish; don't worry, it's fine. You can eat it right out of the oven or put it in a sealed ziploc bag after it cools. Ours pretty much never makes it into the bag. When we forced our roommate to tear us away from the kale so it would go into storage, we managed to keep it around for a week before we nommed it down. Make a big batch and take it to work with you each day.