Week 4 ~ Eat More Fruits and Vegetables
I love carrots, corn, asparagus, onions, sweet bell peppers, fennel, broccoli, parsnips, sweet potatoes, radishes, leeks, sun chokes, garlic and most salad veggies. I also enjoy celery as long as I take the time to peel the tough outer stalk first, and depending on how they’ve been prepared, I like cauliflower, zucchini, spinach and celery root.
With some veggies it’s not the taste that’s the problem. It’s the texture. (Think eggplant or okra.) With others, the problem has more to do with the preparation method than the vegetable itself. The only thing worse than a veggie that’s been boiled past the point of all recognition is a veggie that’s been canned.
When I was growing up, dinner often included some sort of canned vegetable as a side. I hated them all! I actually threw up once after a babysitter forced me to eat a disgusting dinner she called creamed peas on toast. To this day I can’t come within five feet of an open can of green peas, green beans or yellow wax beans without my gag reflex kicking in. Trying to overcome such a strong aversion did not seem like the best way to succeed at this week’s challenge. Better to try something new.
There are plenty of veggies I’ve never tried – lima beans, brussels sprouts, dandelion greens, swiss chard, collard greens, mustard greens, kale. I’m not sure why I’ve never tasted any of them. Maybe it’s because I’ve lived my entire life on the West Coast of North America (except for one short hockey season in Chicago) and I think that most of these veggies are more popular in the South. When the opportunity has presented itself, I’ve usually passed because of their reputation for bitterness. Science has shown that we are actually wired to dislike foods that taste bitter since many naturally bitter compounds are actually toxic. It’s self-preservation.
For this week’s challenge, I decided to introduce my palate to kale. I’d been hearing a lot lately about how kale turns into yummy, crispy chips when dressed with olive oil and salt and roasted in the oven. But I admit I was more than a little skeptical…
Dinosaur Kale Chips
- One bunch Dinosaur Kale*
- Olive Oil
- Sea Salt
- Fresh Cracked Pepper
Pre-heat the oven to 275°F.
Wash the kale thoroughly and pat dry with paper towels. Run a knife down each side of the centre rib to remove the leaves. Discard the ribs.
Pile the leaves on a parchment lined baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Arrange leaves in a single layer so they will roast evenly.
Roast in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and turn leaves over. Roast for 10 minutes more. Serve. In the unlikely event that you have any leftovers, store them in an air tight container at room temperature. Do not refrigerate and do not reheat.
Well surprise, surprise! Dinosaur Kale Chips are absolutely delicious! They’re also versatile enough that you can serve them as a side dish or as a snack.
Kale Chips are light, airy, crispy, and salty with just a slight nutty flavour. They aren’t the least bit bitter, and they’re so addictive that they were the first thing to disappear from my plate.*I chose Dinosaur Kale (also known as Tuscan Kale, Black Kale or Lacinato Kale) since it tends to be less bitter than other kale, but you can use any type you like.
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