Cheesy Cashew Kale Chips

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This is a crispy fun way to eat kale; delicious with sandwiches, a great picnic treat that satisfies the crunchy chip gene we all seem to have!  They are easy to make, easy to cook, easy to store, and excel when it comes to nutrition!  Be careful not to eat half the kale in one sitting as it chews up much easier than steamed kale or a raw kale salad.

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Wash each stem of kale under running water and set aside to drain.

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Then strip the leaves from the stems by holding the stem in one hand while you wrap the fingers of your other hand around the stem at the base of the leaf and quickly slide it down the stem to the tip of the leaf; it will leave you with a naked stem and save you time. It actually works best without the gloves on as your hand will slide more easily.

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This is what they look like stripped. I leave the pieces large because they will shrink a lot when they cook.

 

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Pat the leaves dry with a tea towel.

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Using a very large mixing bowl, pour the cheese sauce over the leaves and mix thoroughly with your hands (this is a good place to use gloves).

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Spread the leaves on your parchment-covered cookie sheets. Three pans is usually what it takes if the head is nice and large. Don’t overlap, but put as close as possible as they shrink a lot.

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After baking, remove very carefully from parchment so they don’t break and crumble. (Any crumbles are good for topping salads.) Store in an air tight container.

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Cheesy Cashew Kale Chips

Servings – 3-4 quarts 
Prep Time – 20-25 minutes 
Cook Time – 50 minutes   
Passive Time – 60 minutes

Ingredients:

1 large head of curly kale

1/2 cup water

1/3 cup diced red pepper

1/2 cup raw cashews

3 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes

1 1/2 tbsp tapioca starch or flour or 1/2 tbsp flax meal

1 tbsp dried onion flakes

1 tbsp hemp hearts. opt.

2 tbsp lemon juice

1/2 tsp paprika or smoked paprika

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp garlic granules or powder

1/4 tsp celery salt

1/4 tsp turmeric


Instructions:
  1. Wash kale, pat dry, tear into 2-3” chunks, removing heavy ribs. Set aside.
  2. Heat oven to 200 degrees convection*. Adjust shelves for 2-3 cookie sheets.
  3. Combine the remaining ingredients in a blender and blend until nice and smooth.
  4. Put dry kale leaves in a very large mixing bowl and pour the sauce over the top.
  5. With your hands spread the sauce evenly over all the pieces of kale, being very careful to get it on both sides.
  6. Lay pieces out on parchment-lined cookie sheets, putting them not quite touching each other.
  7. Cook for 30 minutes, switch pans and cook for 20 minutes more–they should be completely dry. Turn off the oven and let them sit to continue drying for 45-60 minutes.

Notes:

*For non-convection, bake one sheet at a time or rotate 2 sheets every 15 minutes.  Bake at 250 degrees until crispy and dry.