Good evening and welcome to my first recipe series!
I don’t know about you, but about this time every year (the first of February, give or take) I usually slack off on those healthy intentions I had at the beginning of January. An extra cookie batch or two will sneak its way into the oven, a gym session will be skipped for an extra episode of Scandal (btw, who else is addicted to that show?!), or we run out of veggies and make a carb-tastic supper instead. All perfectly okay. Everything in moderation, I say!
However, if you maybe feel a teensy bit guilty about that bowl of ice cream you’re loading up with chocolate chips and sprinkles right now, I have a solution for you. When the salty or sweet TV binge cravings hit, why not indulge in something a bit more healthy? Why not make a treat you can feel less guilty about stuffing in your face at high speed? Lay that Orville’s Extra Buttery aside, my friends, I’ve got the series that will help you stick to your good January intentions while still feeling a little naughty.
Introducing my Healthy Midnight Snack Series! Over the next four weeks I’ll be posting a quick, simple, and healthy snack recipe every Saturday at 10pm (UTC+10:00). Two recipes will fall into the salty category for all you popcorn and potato chip munchers out there, and two will be sweet recipes for the sugar fiends like me (those who will make an entire batch of double chocolate cookies at 11pm when they only really needed one :s). I hope to satisfy everyone’s cravings in this series, so let me know in the comments what sorts of treats you reach for during munching hour!
Without further babbling, let the snacking commence!
Okay, salty devils, here’s one for you. Instead of demolishing an entire bag of Salt and Vinegar Kettle Chips (guilty, thrice guilty), why not snack on these babies? As we know, kale is ridiculously high in vitamins A, K, C, iron and other minerals, low in cholesterol, yadda yadda yawn. It’s good for you. Let’s leave it at that.
A couple months ago, I hated kale on principle. I thought it was a fad food everyone was passing off as a magical super food that only hipsters pretended to enjoy. (Who actually likes raw kale? Raise of hands?) I had ignored kale salads on restaurant menus, I passed by it at the supermarket, and I had never eaten a kale chip. Then, on a whim, I ordered a delicious omelette at a café in Melbourne that featured crisped kale. Suddenly, all my past prejudices about the bitter leafy green vanished, and I was determined to make up for lost time.
Enter these chips. I know kale chips aren’t new to the food blogging market and that everyone here has been happily munching these morsels of crispy deliciousness for years, having been less whiny than me. Oh, well. I’m on the kale chip bandwagon now, good people!
These kale chips are delicate, crispy morsels of salty and smoky goodness thanks to a bit of sea salt and a dash of smoky paprika. I hope they help satisfy any chip cravings you may have this evening (or any other evening!), because you can eat as many as you want! They’re a vegetable, and we all know veggie calories don’t count, right? Right?
Snack happily and guilt-free, everyone!
Salted Paprika Kale Chips (Vegan)
- 6–7 stalks (4–5 cups, loosely packed) kale
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1/3 tsp salt
- 1/3 tsp garlic salt
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- ground pepper to taste
- non-stick cooking spray or 1 tbsp extra olive oil
Preheat your oven to 170 C (325 F) and line a large baking tray or cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Lightly grease the foil with the cooking spray or extra olive oil, so the chips do not stick to the tray. Set aside.
Prep your kale by removing the thick centre stem from each stalk. Rip the leaves into 3″ pieces. You want them all about the same size so that they cook evenly in the oven. Wash your kale by submerging it in a large bowl of cold water and pushing down a few times to loosen any dirt or silt. Leave the kale in the water for about 5 minutes to allow the dirt time to sink to the bottom. Remove the kale from the bowl, disturbing the water as little as possible. Place kale in a salad spinner and spin vigorously until completely dry.* If necessary, remove the kale and dab dry with paper towel also.
In a small bowl, combine the salt, garlic salt, paprika, and ground pepper. Stir well and set aside.
Divide the prepped kale into thirds. Place 1/3 of the kale in a medium bowl and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Massage the oil into the kale with your hands until fully coated. Arrange the oiled kale pieces on the baking tray so they are close to each other but not overlapping. If they overlap, they’ll steam one another in the oven and your kale will not crisp.
Sprinkle the arranged kale with 1/3 of the spice mixture and place in the preheated oven for 10–12 minutes, rotating the tray half way through. The kale chips are done when they are crisp to the touch, dark, but not burned. Using a spatula, gently remove the chips from the tray onto a cooling rack or piece of parchment. Cool for 5–10 minutes. Repeat the process with the other 2/3 of kale.
- *If you don’t own a salad spinner, you will need to use paper towel to dry the kale as much as possible. If the kale is wet, it won’t crisp up properly in the oven and you’ll be left with soggy chips. No one wants soggy chips.
- This recipe can easily be halved or doubled, depending on how much kale you have.
Salty cravings satisfied? I think so! As I said above, feel free to leave any comments below or tweet me with the hashtag #CinnamonMidnightMunchies regarding any unhealthy snacks you’d like to see me makeover!