My sweet celiac and youngest, Izzy

Monday, January 14, 2013

Kale! Oh yeh...and some updates:)

Well, wow, I can't believe I haven't written since August.  Life has been flying by and busier than ever and of course the writing takes a back seat.  After all, I have the rest of my life to share with you all I've learned but only so many years to cater to my kids every whim:). Lana is a junior, Shelby a in two more years I will be no less of a mother but will have two kids away in college and two in elementary. That seems surreal!  But I did want to catch up on a few things and hopefully share a little more than I have been lately.  Since I last wrote we traveled to St. Louis again to apple pick for the second year in a row.  This year my sister and her kids came along and we met her amazing friends that have been retationed there.  We had such a fabulous time and great food.  I learned that a restaurant we have locally, Red Robin, has a gluten free burger ON and gfree bun and gfree french fries!  It's always fantastic to find new places to eat that will accomodate everyones tastes but especially Isabelle's allergies.  There is a ton more I could catch you up on from birthday parties to Halloween and the holidays but it would take FOREVER to write all that.  I'll try to add little bits in each new posting to catch everyone up but I will tell you that out of the blue, Isabelle has become anaphylactic to eggs.  It seems it's mainly in the raw form and things like cupcakes or pancakes are ok (possibly due to the temp they reach in the cooking process???) but I am pretty much on edge about allowing her to have anything with them whatsoever.  It's like starting from scratch all over again but I will tell you this...I have already learned a few tricks and I will be sharing them with some upcoming recipes! If any of you are also Egg free and have tricks of replacements I would love to hear from you!

SO with the New Year here and upon us we are going to start out with one healthy recipe that my kids love so much they've been asking for it every single day in the New Year....KALE CHIPS!  I've had several friends ask for my recipe as they've tried to make them several times to no avail.  So before you cringe your nose or tell me yours don't come out or it's too much work....try my recipe first.

I try to use all organic products but up here in Walmartland it is extremely hard to find organic Kale once the farmer's market closes for winter.  I could drive to Fayetteville but sometimes it's just not convenient to drive the 30 minutes south to get one batch of organic Kale.  When all else fails there is the big huge bags of already washed and cut up Kale in the produce section near the collard greens and spinach and that saves you half the work and time!  Another very important part of making the Kale Chips successful is NOT adding salt before you cook it! 

Garlic Kale Chips

1 16 oz bag already triple washed, cut up Kale
4-5 TBSP olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
seasonings of choice (I prefer minced fresh garlic or garlic powder...for a little more kick try adding a little ceyenne)

Lemon Yogurt dip

2 Tbsp non-egg Mayo (I prefer Earth Balance egg and dairy free spread but you can use Veganaise or another brand you like)
3/4 non fat plain greek yogurt
zest of one lemon
juice from one lemon
dash of salt

Preheat oven to 350. Add the kale to a bowl making sure all the big stalks/stems are removed before adding to bowl.  Drizzle just enough olive oil to coat lightly.  Too much will make a soggy chip and again, DO NOT salt at this point.  Spread a single layer of Kale onto a cookie sheet and bake for 12-15 about the 8-10 minute mark you will start to smell it so check it a few times to ensure you don't burn it.  It should be a dark green, if it's still lighter or bright green, it's not cooked enough.  When it reaches that dark green, fragrant status, take out to let cool, but while it's still hot you want to season with your salt and pepper and any other seasonings you like on regular chips.  The kids love just some salt and garlic powder.  But if you like spicy you can do ceyenne or a taco seasoning or chili powder blend, you can also use infused olive oil, something like a olive oil with seasonings that you would use for Italian dipping bread and then add a little salt and parmesan.  The craziest thing we've ever tried was truffle infused olive oil sprinkled with a little truffle salt and a dash of garlic powder...Might be Izzy's favorite way (she is definately my child;)). While the chips are baking away you can make the yogurt dip, all you do is combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well, refrigerate and the longer it sits the more the flavor develops.  The mayo substitute adds a richness to the creamy yogurt and can be left out completely or you can use regular mayo as well. You can also sub the yogurt for fat free sour cream if you like that better. 

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