Thursday, June 20, 2013

Raw Chard Chips

kale schmale... this is where it's at
Raw Chard Chips.
Kale chips aint' got nothin' on these.

As mentioned in my last post, we're smack dab in the middle of chard week here at the slow club kitchen. Seemingly endless rain and relatively cool early summer temperatures here in the northeast have done wonders for my container-grown plants. As a result I've gone a little mad-scientist over here, experimenting with ways to preserve some of this beautiful bounty. The freezing route has been tested with mediocre results. The pickling route has been tested with OUTSTANDING results (recipe here), so what to try next??
If kale can chip-ifyed, why not chard? 

It can be done! And the results are not only incredibly tasty, but gorgeous. Chard leaves are slightly less hearty than kale, making for a more delicate and entirely different raw chip experience. When readying the leaves, trim away the larger pieces of stem (and save them for these pickled chard stems), but keep the center veins of the leaves intact. This will make the finished chips a bit sturdier. One incredibly helpful tip I can offer- save those little desiccant packets you find in store bought foods like seaweed chips; I hoard them like nobody's business. Toss one into the container with your finished dehydrated chips; it'll do wonders keeping them 
crisp and fresh. 

Paprika-Lime Chard Chips

1 bunch of chard, stems removed and leaves quartered
1.5Tbsp olive oil
1/2tsp sea salt
1.5Tbsp fresh lime juice
1Tbsp paprika
2Tbsp nutritional yeast

Wash and dry chard.
Cut away stems up to the base of leaves and set aside.
Slice each chard leaf top to bottom through center vein, then halve each piece.
Put cut chard into a medium sized mixing bowl.
Add olive oil, salt, lime juice, paprika and nutritional yeast. 
Toss to combine, then use your hands (this will be a little bit messy) to lightly massage mixture into the leaves. 
Spread seasoned leaves in a single layer onto dehydrator sheets.
Dehydrate at 115 degrees for 8-12 hours.

Alternately, the chips can be oven baked at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes,
just keep a close eye on them as they can easily burn. 

Store in an airtight container (if baking, allow to cool completely first)
for up to a week. 

Pretty food just tastes better, right?

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