Every time I make twice baked potatoes I curse myself for not making them more often. They are hardly more work than a traditional baked potato, and while the ingredients aren’t really different (I usually put butter, sour cream and chives on my baked spuds) something magical seems to happen when you fully mix the topping into the flesh of the potato and send it back into the oven for a quick stay at finishing school.
I love potatoes! Whether they be white, sweet, or purple; smashed, whipped, or fried….you name it and if its made with a spud I’m a fan.
That said, I do recognize their nutritional challenges (especially white varieties), and often lament the fact that the creamy dollop of mashed potatoes smiling back at me from the center of my plate, offer little in the way of nutrition, save the dairy fat brought by the cream and butter that make them so luscious. Over the years I’ve made efforts to augment the whipped goodness that often anchors my meals by either adding healthier veggies to my spuds to make them more nutritious, or by replacing them altogether with a tasty alternative.
A couple times each year, once in January and then again in July, I take a very detailed inventory of my pantry in order to cull foodstuffs that have been part of the family for far too long and are in need of either being used or pitched. As I REALLY hate tossing perfectly good grub, January and July tend to be months where new and unusual foods are cooked up in these parts.
Not a fan of cauliflower?
That is about to change….I promise you.
I've never had strong feelings one way or another about cauliflower, perhaps because it always just struck me as a not very exciting veg. Rather bland to look at, not much better to taste, it seemed one of those "blank canvas" types of items that I never took the time to figure out how to dress up and make interesting.
Growing up in Southern Vermont in the 70s and 80s cheese meant just one thing, glorious Vermont Cheddar. Long before the artisanal cheese making boom that has swept the country over the past 15-20 years, Vermont's cheddar tradition even then was well established. "Imported" cheeses whether from other regions of the US, or from other countries were something I rarely encountered as a kid.
Fresh home from college, my oldest son and I enjoyed these awesome baked potatoes the other night when sitting down to a nice home-cooked steak dinner. It was my first foray into cooking steaks sous-vide, and while I'm sure to dedicate a post to that cool experience soon, I'll just tell you now that they were simply amazing!
I'm a freak for a good potato chip, and without question my favorite flavor of chip is sea salt and vinegar. You can keep your sour cream and onion, your barbeque, and your cheddar jalapeno….nothing comes close to a good vinegar chip in my book.
To me, the love of chips (or crisps for my Brit or Oz readers) is universal. I have never met anyone who doesn't love potato chips. Have you? I don't think the same can't be said for many other "cult" status foods.
Hey Eithne…you still out there?
Good, because this one's for you.
My friend Eithne wrote to me a while ago asking if I had a really good recipe for Mejadra (or Mujadara, depending on where in the middle-east you might hail from), and while I had enjoyed a few different versions over the years I had never made it myself and so couldn't really help her. I did tell her that I'd search some reliable sources and try a few different twists on the dish and get bacl to her. When I finally came upon this Ottolenghi-Tamimi take on the classic, I knew my search was over.
Fried brussels sprouts seem to be all the rage these days, available on many restaraunt's menus as an appetizer or side-dish. I first encountered them over a year ago at a local place called the Rye Tavern, and from my first bite was smitten.
This is one of those classic "steak house" dishes that I could never pass up when dining out and enjoying a well-marbled Rib Eye, but never thought to make at home. Not sure why, as it's really a pretty simple dish to make but up until very recently creamed spinach was only a restaurant treat for me.
It could be because the word "cream" relegated the dish to special occasion status in my mind, or perhaps it's "old school" reputation left me searching for a more modern twist like this Creamed Kale dish I came up with a while back. Whatever the reason, I'm so glad I finally came around to trying this dish because you know what….it's a classic for a reason.