The Cheesiest of Cheesy Vegan Kale Chips
By Amy Crawford
As much as I know that guilt is a wasted emotion, it was in fact guilt that guilted me into creating this very cheesy vegan kale chip recipe. So I guess in some respects, guilt does have it's place doesn't it. Said guilt was fueled by the expense of purchasing kale chips in my local store... and then accidentally devouring the whole packet in one sitting.
So it was that one day I a). found myself with half a fridge full of kale (that's a whole other story) and b). decided to save my hard earned pennies and bloody well bake/dehydrate my own. So here goes, my money saving, kale volume reducing recipe; a recipe that promises to disappear from your pantry within 24 hours.
Oh and because I was feeling particularly considerate this recipe creation day, I decided to split my recipe and dehydrate one half whilst baking the other. If you're after a quick snack I'd be leaning towards the latter.
Serves a bundle of mouths, with drinks.
1 bunch kale
1/2 cup raw cashews (soaked for at least 2 hours, overnight if organised)
1/3 cup nutritional yeast*
2 tablespoons raw apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon paprika (I used smokey)
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/3 teaspoon sea salt
1 clove garlic
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil (for first step only)
If you're of the baking variety, pop your oven on at 150 degrees celsius and grab a couple of baking trays, more if you can fit them in the oven.
In a small food processor, process the cashews, nutritional yeast, ACV, 2 tablespoons olive oil, paprika, turmeric, garlic and salt. Blend until well combined. If your mixture is very thick add a little drizzle of water to make it more manageable when massaging onto the kale.
Wash your kale and dry thoroughly. Tear or cut the kale leaves off their stem and rip them into chip sized pieces. Throw them into a large bowl and drizzle with the 2 teaspoons olive oil, no more or they'll be very soggy! Using your hands massage the oil thoroughly all over the leaves.
Putting aside all fear of very messy hands, gently massage your lovely cheesy paste through the leaves as evenly as you can. Don't fear big clumps, you'll thank me later for those.
Spread your leaves out onto as many trays as you can fit in the oven. You may need to do two lots. Do not pile your leaves on top of each other or they'll end up steaming - separate them so they'll cook quickly and attain their lovely crunch.
Pop them into the oven for 12-15 minutes, checking on occasion. Remove from the oven and (if your oven is anything like mine) you'll need to turn them around for even cooking. Pop back in for a further 5-10 or so minutes or until crisping and not burning.
NOTE!: our ovens are all very different, you may need a little more or less time.
Spread your leaves out on your trays and dehydrate according to the instructions for your dehydrator. I dried mine at 47 degrees celsius 10-12 hours.
Once made the bad news is that these chips do not last.. they do need to be eaten within 24-48 hours before softening. So, make sure you store them in a totally air tight container or just grab your family and/or friends and eat them, NOW!
FYI: having now baked AND dehydrated these chips my favourite version was the raw one, I preferred the consistency.
If you'd like a recipe for PLAIN kale chips (that is, simply with EVO and salt), refer to this very yum Spring Vegetable and Quinoa Salad with Crispy Kale and Toasted Almonds). Or maybe you'd like to try my Crispy Root Vegetable Threesome (ahem).
Righto, that's it from me. Please report back below and let me know what you reckon. I'd also love to know what other kale chip combos you guys make, I've got a dangerous taste for them!
* I'll be sharing a word on nutritional yeast next week but know this, it is REALLY good for you and worth making a trip to the local store for. Fabulous source of Vit B & 12, folate and contains all 18 essential amino acids. It's also what gives this recipes it's cheesiness.