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December 5, 2012

Episode 1: Carrot-Ginger Kale Chips

        When you are planning your food rations for a week long road trip up the pacific Northwest, it is normal to think to yourself, "I think I will need to get 10 bunches of kale. As soon as possible." Because it is also normal to think, "I will need to make copious amounts of kale chips. And not just one kind of kale chip, because I might get tired of it. I should make as many different kinds of kale chips as I can think of! Then we will never tire of kale and will have tasty greens forever! 

Okay who am I kidding. This probably isn't normal. But it's also completely AWESOME. Four (maybe five) different kinds of kale chips! Starting with a carrot-ginger, a flavor I've never made for kale chips before.

Kale chips are expensive to buy. Personally, I can't drop $6 for a 2 ounce bag, and what I get for my money isn't usually as good as I can make myself anyway. But good news! They're also ridiculously easy to make. I got all of my kale from a local farm, which conveniently made it local, pesticide-free, and much cheaper than buying it in a store. 

A good thing to note about all of these sauces for the kale is that they would also make wonderful creamy salad dressings for hearty green salads. 


I used a dehydrator to slowly dry my kale chips over the course of about 12 hours, but if you don't have a dehydrator, I've read of some people having luck baking kale chips in their oven at low temperatures. 

If your kale is pre-washed (pretty much all kale coming from stores, and a lot of kale coming from farms has been) then I would recommend not washing your kale before making it into kale chips (unless you find dirt and little bugs on it - then you probably should). For some reason the extra moisture on the kale seems to dilute the dressing. This doesn't make technical sense, but it's been my experience. 

I used a combination of curly green kale and red russian (purple) kale, but I'm sure you could use any variety such as dino, etc. 

Carrot-Ginger Kale Chips

3 tbls fresh ginger
1 c. chopped carrot
3 tbls miso
1/4 c. tahini
1/3 c. canola
11/4 tsp soy sauce
1/2 c. water
3 cloves garlic

2/3 c. sesame seeds
2 large bunches of kale, de-stemmed

Soak sesame seeds for at least 1/2 hour. 
Blend all ingredients from the ginger to the garlic until it is a uniform mixture. 
Taste it. It should be strong, but if you want more ginger, add more ginger. If you it to be saltier, add more soy sauce. 
In a large bowl, mix together the kale, ginger sauce, and sesame seeds. 
Mix thoroughly, massaging kale, making sure each piece gets coated in sauce. This may take several minutes. 
Spread the kale onto mesh dehydrator sheets. I used 5 sheets, and they were all full. 

Dehydrate kale at 115 degrees for about 12 hours, or until the kale in the center of the sheets is completely dry and crispy. 
Enjoy. And try not to eat them all at once. Although is it really that bad if you do? 

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