Sometimes I believe I have the palate of a twelve-year-old. I like putting ketchup on just about everything. I have chocolate cereals for breakfast. I could easily eat pizza, hot dogs, burgers, and nuggets every day (obviously with ketchup). Well now that I read it sounds more like the menu of an adult who has absolute no regard for their health (Oops). Now, I don’t eat these every single day, and I’ve really forced myself to eat healthier, but sometimes it can be so difficult, especially if you’re a picky person who is not interested in trying new things (guilty!). Naturally, that was the case with veggie chips. I mean, in my mind I thought this is just another of those alternative products that attempt to taste like the original but are quite far from achieving that. Potato chips are great, and why would someone want to make something different? For me it wasn’t only a matter of health. You can actually make your own potato chips and they can taste as good or better than the ones you get at the grocery store.
So, long story short, as it happens to people like me –because life always wants to put you in terrible situations–, one day I had to attend a small gathering with some important people from my university and I really wanted to leave a good impression on the professors and coordinators. I went to the little table where they had displayed snacks and drinks, and it was like hell. To start with, they only had wine. Yes, I know it’s kind of a sin not to like wine, but I really don’t, so I grabbed a glass and pretended to sip once in awhile. As for snacks, they had all these varieties of healthy stuff, so I knew I was screwed. I just thought to myself that after the reunion I would treat myself to a nice dinner, but one of the main coordinators approached us and offered me one of those famous veggie chips. I had no choice but to eat it. I did, and it was like when someone tries bacon for the first time. Well, not reall. Nothing compares to bacon, but it was not bad at all, and I knew I had found a new food obsession.
Basically, there are two main ways to prepare them, the trick is to dehydrate them, and these are frying and baking. The trick here is knowing what’s best for each vegetable and be creative when flavoring them. If you also love veggie chips and want to make your own, here are some easy and quite fast ways to make them:
Parmesan Garlic Spinach Chips
You have to wash, dry, and separate each leaf of the spinach first. Place them separately on a tray. In a separate bowl mix olive oil with shredded pieces of garlic and parmesan cheese, mix them, and spread them on the leaves with a brush. Bake for 7 to 10 minutes at 325 degrees (or when the leaves are crispy), and enjoy.
Curry Carrot Chips
The trick is to slice the carrot in thin layers. Just as the spinach, place the slices on a tray and season them with a bit of olive oil, salt, pepper, and curry. Bake them and serve. You can accompany them with a sauce of cream cheese to balance the curry flavor.
Tomato Mushroom Chips:
Make a tomato sauce that with paste-like consistency. Season the sliced portobello mushrooms with salt and pepper and add a thin layer of tomato sauce. Bake until it's crispy. This might take a bit longer than the previous veggies. Just remember to slice them really thin.
Green Bean Fries:
Wash, cut, and dry the green beans. Set one plate with eggs, and another with parmesan cheese, flour (or bread crumbs), salt, and pepper. Soak each green bean in egg and then cover it with the powdery mixture. You can either fry them in very hot oil or bake them in the oven.
Vinegar Beet Chips:
Prepare the beets in the same way we’ve mentioned with the previous vegetables. In a small bowl mix vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper, and chives. Season the beets with this preparation and bake until it's crispy.
The preparation is basically the same as the green bean fries. You just have to cut the eggplant into thin rectangles. Perhaps not proper for diets, but it's still delicious. You can wrap the piece of eggplant in a slice of mozzarella or cheddar cheese and then proceed with the preparation.
If you’re like me, you’ll probably think these won’t ever compare to common potato chips and fries. But believe me, these are very good. You can experiment with so many herbs and spices, and you’ll have great and original snacks that won’t take you more than 20 minutes to prepare. You can accompany these with different sauces or dips to make them even tastier.