Kale chips ahoy!

Not everyone is bananas about raw kale (though the roly-poly bugs in the garden seem to be liking it just fine). Here at Chez Nake-id, we love the stuff. So when organic kale started selling for $3 a bunch, I got out the seed pack and started planting.

Kale is the gift that keeps on giving. While the arugala and spinach went all loose and dishabille in the heat, the kale has kept it togther, producing steadily for months. The kale pictured above is lacinato or dinosaur kale, so named, I imagined, because the store-bought leaves have the consistency of brontosaurus ears. Grow it yourself and you'll be dining on shoots as tender blades of grass; many days I simply run to the garden and pick my lunch.

Two weeks ago in Crestone, our hosts set out bowls of baked kale chips for their guests to snack on. Know what? You can't eat just one.

There are tons of recipes on the internets. You can tart these babies up with everything from lime and chili powder to paprika, parmesan cheese, nutritional yeast and fancy vinegars.

Here are the basics:

1 bunch (or two) of kale, lacinato or curly

1 Tbs olive oil

1 tsp good quality sea salt

2 pinches cayenne pepper, optional

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Wash and dry your kale. Cut out the fibrous ribs (I didn't do this because *ahem* my kale is so tender) and roughly chop the kale.

Toss the leaves with olive oil, salt and cayenne and spread out in a single layer on baking sheets. (I used two very large sheets.)

Check for crispness after 20 minutes. Depending on how tightly you packed your kale on the baking sheets, you may need to bake a bit longer. You want them very crisp.

Serve them at your next do. They make for a great conversation starter.

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