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Recipes offer 3 cheers to kale

POSTED: April 6, 2010 5:43 p.m.

Baked Kale Chips
This sounds like the strangest snack ever, but it’s good — if you like kale.
1 bunch kale
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 to 2 teaspoons seasoned salt
Preheat oven to 350 F. Line 1 or 2 baking sheets with parchment paper, nonstick foil or a silicone baking mat.
Pull or cut the kale leaves away from the thick stems, discarding the stems and tearing the leaves into large pieces. Place in a mixing bowl and drizzle with oil, then sprinkle with salt. Toss well with your hands to combine.
Spread the leaves on the lined baking sheets. Bake 10 to 15 minutes, until the edges of the leaves are browned but not burned and the leaf pieces are crispy.
Yield: 6 servings.

Roasted Kale
This is close to the kale chips, but you don’t let it get as crispy.
1 large bunch kale, any kind
3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
About 1 tablespoon coarse or flaky sea salt or kosher salt
1 to 2 tablespoons sherry, balsamic or red wine vinegar
Preheat oven to 425 F. Pull the kale leaves off the thick stems and discard the stems. Wash the leaves and spin or shake dry. Pile the leaves up and slice them into strips about 1 inch wide.
Place the kale in a large mixing or serving bowl. Drizzle with about 2 tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt, then toss well to combine.
Spread the kale on a large baking sheet and place in the oven. Set the bowl aside. Roast the kale about 7 minutes, toss with tongs and return to the oven for several minutes. The leaves should be beginning to brown around the edges.
Remove from oven and return the kale to the bowl you mixed it in. Drizzle with about 1 tablespoon more oil and the vinegar. Toss well with tongs and serve.
Yield: 2 to 3 servings.

Tuscan Kale Salad
Based on a New York Times recipe. The original calls for lacinato kale, also known as black kale or dinosaur kale, but I made it with a mixture of lacinato and the sweeter Siberian kale.
1 large bunch kale
1 slice country-style bread or  1/4 cup fresh bread crumbs
1 clove garlic, peeled
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons finely grated pecorino Romano or Parmesan Reggiano cheese, divided
About 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Juice of 1 lemon, freshly squeezed
1/4 teaspoon coarse or kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Trim off the bottoms of the kale stems and discard. Pile up the kale leaves and slice them into ribbons about 1/2 to  3/4 inches wide. You should have about 5 or 6 cups kale. Place the kale in a large serving bowl and set aside.
Toast the bread lightly, then pulse in a food processor or rub on the large holes of a cheese grater to make coarse crumbs. If using fresh bread crumbs, spread out on a pan and toast lightly. Set aside.
Pound the garlic clove into paste in a mortar with a pestle or with the back of a large knife. Place the garlic in a small bowl. (If you’re using a mortar, you can just make the dressing there.) Add  1/4 cup cheese, 3 tablespoons oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper flakes and pepper and whisk to combine.
Pour over the kale and use tongs to toss well to thoroughly combine. Let stand at least 5 minutes and up to 15 or 20 minutes.
Add bread crumbs, remaining 2 tablespoons cheese and a small drizzle of oil and toss again before serving.
Yield: About 4 servings.

The Charlotte Observer



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