Crispy kale

Crispy kale with sea salt and lemon

  • 4
  • Easy

These tasty vegetable crisps,flavoured with sea salt and lemon, are the perfect, pre-dinner snack. They make great use of one of the true stars of the winter vegetable garden: kale, which will be at its finest after a cold snap, when the low temperatures have turned some of the starches to sugars. Photograph Andrew Montgomery

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For me, one of the best things about Great Dixter being open to the public is the opportunity to exchange recipes and vegetable-growing tips with visitors. This recipe comes from a lady I got talking to one day when I was working in the garden. I tried it that same night and loved it. Since then, lots of friends have taken the recipe home with them after eating it here. It makes a fantastic side dish with grilled fish or chicken: the lemon really cuts through the oil and lightens the earthy flavour of the kale. It’s also a delicious appetiser with a chilled glass of wine or champagne before lunch or dinner. Note that it’s important to chop the kale yourself – the stuff sold in supermarkets is chopped too small.

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Ingredients

  • Kale leaves 165g, tough stems and ribs removed and torn or roughly chopped into 8-10cm pieces
  • Lemon 1, juice and grated zest
  • Olive oil 1tbsp
  • Cayenne pepper dash
  • Salt ¼tsp
  • Pepper ¼tsp

Method

  • Step 1

    Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4.

  • Step 2

    Put the kale into a large bowl. Add the lemon juice, olive oil, cayenne, salt and pepper and use your hands to massage the seasonings into the leaves. Lay them flat on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 10–15 minutes, turning halfway through, until crisp and lightly browned.

  • Step 3

    Sprinkle the lemon zest over the crisps before serving.

This recipe is taken from The Great Dixter Cookbook: Recipes from an English Garden by Aaron Bertelsen (Phaidon, 2017).

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