Wednesday, June 14, 2017

BAKED POTATO CHIPS

When I am on a diet, (who am I kidding, I'm always on a diet) my weight loss plan starts to falter when I get a craving for something crunchy and salty. I'm not talking about raw fruits and veggie type of crunchy, I'm talking about potato chip crunchy. If I ignore this craving, it just gets stronger; does that sound familiar to anyone?

I did some online searching for a remedy to my craving that wouldn't have a billion calories. I found three different recipes for baked potato chips that sounded promising.

After trying all three (and immediately tossing all three into the garbage), I decided to make up my own version. I must say I'm quite pleased with it. 

Not only does this little recipe completely satisfy my "crunchy chip craving" but the ENTIRE RECIPE only has one tablespoon of olive oil!!

Wash and dry six golf ball size Yukon gold potatoes. Slice them as thin as possible. A mandolin would work well for this, but I just used my sharpest knife and sliced them; just try to make them all an even thickness.


Toss the sliced potatoes with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, making sure that a little of the oil gets in between every slice. Lay the slices out on a heavy cookie sheet that has been lightly sprayed with vegetable spray, then sprinkle the potatoes lightly with kosher salt.

Baking time is important. One of the recipes I tried (and threw away) called for 2 hours at 200°F. That produced a dull, leathery piece of potato. I even let it cook an extra HOUR and it was still leathery...yuck.  Another recipe called for 18 minutes at 400°F which produced a crisp but burnt taste...yuck again.

So I decided to try Yukon gold potatoes. How long you bake them will depend on how thick you sliced your potatoes and how hot your oven runs. I baked mine in a 375°F electric oven for 22 minutes, flipping them over half way through the baking time....just right.


These chips are meant to be eaten right away because they are not meant to be stored like a commercial potato chip. There are small "non-crunch" parts on the chips that would not store well.

I hope you will try these. They have a WONDERFUL flavor and a fantastic, salty crunch!!!

NOTE:  Watch the chips closely the last couple of minutes because once they start to turn golden, they darken quickly.

Friday, May 26, 2017

OVEN POACHED EGGS !!

A dear friend of mine, posted a video (from Foodstyle.com)about
poaching eggs in the oven and I was quite intrigued. Not only can poaching eggs, in the traditional method, be a disaster be challenging but you can only make 2-3 at a time!!

Here is what I found:

The video said to put about a tablespoon of water in each cup of a regular muffin pan, then crack an egg over the water and bake at 350° for 8 to 10 minutes.........well, that ALMOST worked.

I DID use the scant tablespoon of water, and I DID preheat my electric oven to 350°, but when I tried it using a standard cupcake (muffin) pan, the egg + water filled it to overflowing and took a full 20 minutes to cook, not 8 to 10.

On my second attempt, I had excellent luck using a jumbo size muffin pan (I think they call them Texas size?) and I gave it a light mist of vegetable spray, then put in the scant tablespoon of water and a large egg. I baked them at 350° for exactly 12 minutes (not 8 to 10)
and they lifted right out of the pan with a spoon.....YUM!!!


  A PERFECTLY POACHED EGG !!
Whether you are making one or 30, this method (with my tweaks) really does work and it couldn't be easier!!
The difference in cooking time (between my oven and the Foodstyle video) COULD be that their oven simply runs hotter than mine or maybe they were using smaller eggs (?)With so many variables, I suggest you do a "test egg" to see how long it takes in your oven before you make a whole pan of these.
One other note: When your eggs are done to your liking, take them OUT OF THE PAN right away or they will continue to cook.
Don't you just want to
dunk your toast in this one?

ENJOY !!!



Thursday, April 27, 2017

VELVEETA RISOTTO

I had to smile when I named this recipe because never have two little words described opposite ends of the comfort food spectrum more devishly, just rest assured, that if you like good old mac and cheese, made with Velveeta (like ALL good mac and cheeses 😏) you will love this saucy side dish !!

Arborio rice (for those of you who have not cooked it before)is a short chubby grain of rice, that (when cooked correctly) gets bigger and creamier as it cooks(without getting mushy). The cooking process is also different than regular white rice, since you add the HOT liquid 1/2 cup at a time, letting the rice cook (and liquid reduce) before you add the next 1/2 cup of liquid. Sounds complicated, but it isn't.



BACON RISOTTO and CHEESE

4 cups chicken stock
1 cup ARBORIO rice  (not regular rice)
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder (not salt)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
NO SALT (because Velveeta is salty)
5 slices crisp cooked bacon (cut into small pieces)
4 ounces Velveeta cheese cut into small cubes
1 tablespoon thinly sliced green onions


Heat the chicken stock until it almost boils, then keep it hot on a side burner for now.

Melt the butter in a large saucepan, then add 1 cup Arborio rice + the garlic powder and black pepper, and stir. Cook/fry the rice until you see very pale golden edges on most of the rice ....... then add your first half cup of HOT chicken stock and stir. 

Bring to a VERY GENTLE boil(NO lid) until the liquid is mostly absorbed, then add another half cup of HOT chicken stock and stir. 


Repeat this process (1/2 cup of broth at a time)and start testing the rice for "done-ness" at about 15 minutes (but expect the whole process to take more like 20 minutes).  

When you add the LAST half cup of HOT chicken stock, include the small cheese cubes + bacon and green onions. Gently stir, then let it sit a minute while the cheese melts and stir gently again.  Serve !!


CLICK ON THIS PHOTO,
THEN TAKE A BITE !!!