Marmite is one of those things that you either love or hate. I happen to be in the love camp on this one! I found it to be a really important addition to my daughter’s diet when she was little. Both my children were brought up as vegetarian, but my daughter really didn’t care for dairy products, so making sure she got her daily dose of B12 was ensured by her daily consumption of bread and marmite. That love of marmite lives on for both of us to this day – and is the inspiration for this recipe.I prefer to use a dehydrator for any kale chips that have more than just olive oil and salt on them, as I prefer the resulting texture – they are crispy, but also just ever so slightly chewy. They are also much less hassle as you just pop them on the dehydrator trays – you don’t have to keep an eye on them at all. There’s no risk of them burning or ending up with wispy pieces. Of course, you can also cook them in an oven, and the recipe includes instructions for both.
I usually make kale chips with nutritional yeast and onion powder – so there’s some of that savory, yeasty flavor there already – but actually adding a large Tablespoon of Marmite completely changes the game. These make a really great snack, and I always make a double batch as we eat these rather moreish chips up so quickly!
The taste of the baked chips is also slightly different than the dehydrated chips: they have a more savory and less marmitey taste to me. The dehydrating process intensifies flavors somewhat, and I love how they turn out using this method.
First of all, soak the cashews for at least 4 hours, or preferably overnight. This will really soften up the nuts and aid in blending into a smooth and creamy paste. I use a VitaMix, but any blender will do – you may just have to blend for slightly longer in a regular blender to get a really smooth result. Just put all of the ingredients, minus the kale into a blender and blend until smooth. Scrape down the sides a few times until you have a thick paste.
Next, wash and dry the kale well. Make sure that the leaves are as dry as possible, to ensure the cashew sauce will stick to the leaves. Remove the tough center stalk from the leaves – and tear into quite large pieces. They leaves will shrink considerably once dehydrated/cooked, and you want the leaves to still be a good size for snacking.
If you choose to cook the chips in the oven, they will have a slightly different flavor. They will taste more ‘cooked’ and still have quite a strong kale flavor, in my opinion.
Here’s the end result from the oven:
If using a dehydrator, make sure to leave enough space between the leaves for the air to circulate. Here are the results from the dehydrator:
- 2 bunches raw kale, washed, dried, de-stemmed and torn into large pieces
- 2 cups / 300g raw cashews, soaked in 2½ cups / 1000 ml water for 4 hours, or overnight
- ½ cup / 120 ml filtered water
- 2 cloves garlic, grated
- 1 T marmite
- 2 T nutritional yeast powder
- 1 T onion powder
- Pinch sweet paprika
- Pinch old bay seasoning (optional)
- 1 t salt
- Drain the cashews and put into a blender (I use a VitaMix)
- Add the water, grated garlic, marmite, nutritional yeast powder, onion powder and salt.
- Blend for about 1 minute, scraping down the sides as necessary, until you have a smooth, creamy paste. If you are using a regular blender, you may need to blend for up to two minutes.
- Put the dried kale into a very large mixing bowl.
- Add the paste. (Make sure the leaves are completely dry before you add the cashew paste).
- Using your hands (I use disposable gloves), gently massage the creamy mixture into the kale leaves until all leaves are completely coated in the mix.
- For Oven Method:
- Set the oven to 300F.
- Place the kale pieces on to several baking trays, making sure no leaves over lap.
- Place the trays in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and gently turn over each piece.
- Return to the oven and bake a further 5-10 minutes. Watch carefully that the leaves do not burn.
- Remove and leave to cool completely.
- Store in an airtight bag or container for up to 3 days.
- For the Dehydrator Method:
- Gently spread the leaves out onto the dehydrator trays, first lining them with teflex sheets.
- Put into the dehydrator, leaving space between each tray, so that they do not touch the leaves above or below them.
- Turn on to 135F and dehydrate for 1 hour.
- Turn down to 110F and dehydrate for 3 hours more.
- Test and see if they are crisp enough for your liking. This is the amount I usually dehydrate mine for.
- However, if you would like them crisper, return to the dehydrator and check at 30 minute intervals.
- Remove and leave to cool completely.