Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Tomato, Mozzarella and Pesto Panini with Kale Chips

The bread we got in our CSA yesterday looked and smelled wonderful.  We chose one with an abundance of salt on the crust because, well... why not?  I was considering cooking some pasta last night to toss with the rest of the collard green pesto and serving the bread along side.  But we decided this was bit too carb intensive so I went for something cheesy and melty instead.  I sliced the bread and added the collard green pesto, fresh mozzarella, sliced tomatoes and fresh basil.  This bread made, hands down, the best panini I've ever had.  It would be worth the drive to Pleasanton to pick up another loaf...seriously, it was amazing.

Since we also got some kale in the box I decided to make some kale "chips" to go along side.  These aren't pretty but I did photograph them anyway.  They are a great way to satisfy that desire for a salty, crunchy go along with a sandwich without any guilt.  First you wash and spin dry the kale, remove the stems and tear the leaves into small pieces.  Spread it out on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and spray with olive oil, sprinkle with kosher salt.  I've also made these sprinkled with nutritional yeast which is nice too.
Bake in a 350-400 degree oven for about 5 minutes.  Check them frequently as they go from not quite ready to burned very quickly.   

They will darken and get crispy and are not very pretty but they taste really good!  Sometimes you have to remove the ones from the outer edges as they get cooked before the rest of pieces.  So it does need fair amount of attention but only for a few minutes and it's worth it for some guilt free snacking!

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