Sides, Snacks

110

Sweet Potato Parmesan Tater Tots (and Horseradish Ketchup)

This recipe is AMAZING. The tots alone are sweet and creamy, but pared with the spicy ketchup they’re just out of this world delicious. AND they’re baked, so it’s basically health food. My favorite part of this snack is easily the crunchy chip coating; it adds a whole new level to the tot. I made them as a side for burgers, but I think they’d be incredible as a breakfast side with fried eggs or an omelet. Try them. They do not disappoint.

Tots (adapted from halfbakedharvest.com)

– 4 medium sweet potatoes

– 2 tbsp butter, melted

– 3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

– 1/2 tsp salt

– 1/2 tsp pepper

– 1/2 tsp chili powder

– 1/2 tsp garlic powder

– 1 cup sweet potato chips crumbs

– 1 cup lentil chip crumbs

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Prick the sweet potatoes all over with fork. Bake on the oven rack until tender (50-60 minutes). Allow to cool, then use your hands to peel away the skin.  Place the potatoes in a medium bowl and mash with the butter. Stir in the cheese, spices, salt and pepper to taste.  To make the best chip crumbs, pulse in a food processor until fine, then transfer to a bowl. You can also puree the potato mixture in the processor as well to get the smoothest texture if mashing by hand isn’t pleasing you. Scoop about 1 tablespoon of the sweet potato mixture into your hand and roll into a tot shape.  Roll the tot in the chips and coat well. If you need to re-shape the tots now is the moment. Place on a baking sheet with parchment paper. Repeat until all of the sweet potato mixture is gone. Bake for 15 minutes and flip the the tater tots over and bake another 10-15 minutes or until golden!

 

Horseradish Ketchup

– 1/2 cup ketchup

– 2 tbsp horseradish

Combine the two ingredients and be merry.

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Snacks

sixty nine

Curried Chickpea Salad

Side dishes are one of my favorite things to make. I love seeing a plate that’s full of many different things, so I try to whip up at least two side dishes for every dinner I make, even if it’s a simple salad. This particular “salad” is more my version of a deconstructed chickpea korma, a South Asian Curry. It’s incredibly aromatic and flavorful, and goes with so much. You can serve it over rice, with naan, on a green salad, or treat it like your typical side dish and spoon a big helping onto a plate full of whatever. Live your life. One of the best things about this dish is the role the onions play. Not only do they add great flavor, being onions and all, but they also have a lot of time to soak up all those great spices until they take on a completely different flavor than if the spices were added after the onions finished cooking. Yuuuuuum.

Salad (very loosely adapted from NYTimes.com)

– 6 teaspoons olive oil

– 1 1/2 cups diced white onion

– 1 small clove garlic, diced finely

– 1 tsp. turmeric

– 1 tsp. cumin

– 1 tsp. coriander

– 1 tsp. ground ginger

– 1/2 tsp. ground cardamom

– 1 tsp. garam masala

– dash cayenne pepper (optional)

– 2 15-ounce cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed

– 1 ear of corn, cooked and cut off the cob (canned works too)

– 4 tsp. lemon juice

– 1/4-1/2 tsp. salt

– Pepper to taste

– 2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley

Heat a large and fairly deep pan on medium. When hot, add the oil, then onion and garlic; sauté until the onions begin to brown (6 to 8 minutes) stirring periodically. Add the turmeric, cumin, coriander, ginger, cardamom, garam masala, and cayenne pepper (if using) and continue to sauté until the spices begin getting fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the chickpeas, lemon juice, salt and pepper and cook for another 5 minutes, making sure the chickpeas have softened nicely. Remove from heat and add the corn. While the salad cools, mix in the parsley. Serve slightly warm, at room temperature, or cover in plastic wrap in the refrigerator for a few hours and serve chilled.

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Sides, Snacks

fifty five

Baked Potato Chips

I love potato chips. Put a bag of them in front of me and I assure you they will be gone in about eight minutes. Maybe it’s the satisfying sound the crunch makes or maybe it’s just that wondrous combination of salt and fat; there’s just nothing wrong with it (if it’s wrong, I never want to be right again). So I decided I’d try my hand at them myself. First, I tried frying them in a big pasta pot full o’oil. Were they yummy? Yes. Were they also incredibly greasy and stressful and did they result in an oil burn on my hand? YES. So no, that’s not the method I’ll be sharing today. I decided baking was the way to go. And I was right. While you don’t end with that special taste that only comes from packaged food, you get a beautiful light and crispy product, kinda somewhere in between a fry and a packaged chip. I think they were slammin’, but make them yourself and you be the judge!

Chips

– 4 large baking potatoes

– 4 tbsp. olive oil

– 1/2 tsp. garlic powder

– kosher salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F and line a few baking trays with parchment paper. Slice the potatoes very thinly on a slight diagonal with a mandoline slicer or butcher knife. Place them between two paper towels and pat dry. Lay the potatoes on the pan (it’s okay if they overlap a bit) and with a pastry bush, bush the oil all over them. Sprinkle on the garlic powder, then salt and pepper to taste. Bake about 7 minutes, then shake them around, flipping over if need be, then bake for an additional 3-6 minutes depending on how crispy you like. It’s very important to check them every minute after the original 7 to avoid burning! Cool on a wire rack to get that cool ripple-y potato chip shape (forgot to do this is the first batch that I photographed!). They go great with ketchup, honey mustard, hot sauce, tartar sauce, (essentially everything), but I served them with a barbecue dipping sauce for a little BBQ chip with a twist!

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Sides

five

Coleslaw

This zesty salad is made of shredded cabbage, carrots and mayonnaise or buttermilk. (Other vegetables like radishes, onions, and peppers are often included as well). This dish makes for a great side, snack, or sandwich/burger topping! Original retro coleslaw recipes call for the the white “salad dressing” Miracle Whip instead of mayo, even though it’s sweeter. My version has less dressing and bit of spice to it, keeping all the flavor!

– 1 head green cabbage, finely shredded

– 2 large carrots, finely shredded

OR

– 1 package pre-shredded cabbage/carrot coleslaw starter

– 3/4 cup mayonnaise

– 2 tsbp sour cream

– 2 tbsp grated onion or shallot

– 2 tsp white vinegar

– 1 tbsp dry mustard

– 1 tsp celery salt

– 1/2 tsp chili powder

– Salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients, tasting along the way. Adjust spices according to your taste.

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