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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Cheddar-Kale Chips

Over the past few weeks, snacking, let alone eating, has been a challenge.  Both my husband and I are on a special diet, as a result of some hair mineral analysis testing we had done a few months ago.  On this diet, you can't eat dairy, wheat/gluten, fried foods, sugar, or fruit, and you are limited to 2 small servings of grains per day.  For the most part, you're eating vegetables and protein.  After a while, it gets kind of boring and you want something crunchy (besides carrot sticks or celery)!

I've been on a quest to find some healthy, vegetable-based snack foods.  I had heard about kale chips before.  I watched a video on YouTube last week about how to bake them in your oven, so I tried it out.  The pieces of kale that baked correctly were good.  However, my oven doesn't seem to bake a tray of kale very evenly, so I had more than half of each batch with either burnt pieces or uncooked pieces.  I tried twice, but was still not getting the results I wanted.

Yesterday, I was looking around in my Ani's Raw Food Essentials cookbook, and I noticed a recipe to make kale chips in the dehydrator.  I thought this might be a better method to make them without the mixed bag of results I was getting in my oven!  I made up a batch last night, and was very happy to find some tasty Cheddar-Kale Chips in my dehydrator this morning!

Cheddar-Kale Chips
1 cup red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 cup cashews (I used raw, unsalted)
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
6 cups bite-sized pieces of kale, tightly packed (about 1 bunch)

Put all ingredients, except for the kale, into a blender.  Blend into a thick cream.

In a very large mixing bowl, toss the blended pepper mixture with the kale, coating all pieces evenly.

Spread kale into two 14-inch-square dehydrator trays, and dry at 104 degrees for 8-10 hours.