I'm not going to spend this entry breaking apart that particular sacred cow (I know, I'm witty!), but suffice it to say the vegetable kingdom provides more than adequate calcium-rich options. Namely, I'm talking about dark, leaf greens--kale, swiss chard, spinach, arugula, collards, mustard greens, and even broccoli. Now, I love me some broccoli, but there's only so much a girl can eat in a lifetime. And as for the others, well, I think there's also a 5-year-old in all of us that instinctively recoils at the sight of of a big lump of green stuff on our plate.
Of all of the leafy greens on the list, spinach was the only one I ever explored. Living alone, I tended to shy away from purchasing produce that couldn't be eaten right out of the fridge or used in several capacities, for instance, salads or panini sandwiches, and baby spinach fit the bill perfectly. Now that I live with another vegetarian, however, I am finding myself wanting to be more ambitious and craving something heartier, with more "meat" to it so to speak.
I first encountered kale chips at my internship this summer when my fellow intern Deepali pulled them out of her lunch bag. I'm not sure if it was the kale chips themselves, or simply the fact that for the first in mt life someone had weirder items in their lunch than me--at any rate, I was intrigued. I tried one and was blown away by a texture that was crunchy like a potato chip, but more delicate and with a fuller flavor.
So at the Highland Park farmer's market last week, I picked up a bunch of gorgeous organic kale. While Deepali had given me a basic sketch of the preparation method, I found a recipe online for backup. To that basic recipe, I added some lemon and lime juice for extra flavor. The result? Crunchy, calcium-rich, green goodness.
Homemade Kale Chips
1 Bunch of Kale
1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil
Salt and Lemon/Lime Juice to taste
(I can also imagine other spices working well with this too--curry powder, tamari, garlic--let your imagination run wild!)
- Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a non insulated cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- With a knife or kitchen shears carefully remove the leaves from the thick stems and tear into bite size pieces. Wash and thoroughly dry kale with a salad spinner. Drizzle kale with olive oil and sprinkle with seasoning salt.
- Bake until the edges brown but are not burnt, 10 to 15 minutes.