Wednesday, August 31, 2011

satisfying snacks: sweet potato chips

Though it seems much more daunting to make your own chips than it does to run to the store and buy a bag, I’ve become quite the fan of making them on my own lately. I’ve been making pita chips for years (an even simpler recipe than this one) and decided to give baked sweet potato chips a shot.
With the exception of a cookie sheet and clean hands, this is all you need to make your own chips at home:
{sweet potatoes, sea salt, olive oil, a peeler and a mandolin}
I start off by peeling the potatoes, though you don’t really have to if you give them a good scrub. Then I run them through one of my favorite little kitchen tools, the mandolin. This baby lets me slice everything from paper-thin potatoes for chips to delicate slivers of cucumber for lemon water. It takes a little muscle but it’s much easier than trying to make uniform slices with a knife. 
When you get to the little nub on the end though, just toss it. Those 10 extra chips you might be able to get out of it are not worth losing a fingertip.  
Next, I just toss slices in a bowl with salt and olive oil. When placing the potatoes on your cookie sheet, you have to make sure they are in ONE LAYER. I know, this step is the most long and boring part of the process but trust me, it’s worth it. My mom, who isn’t the most patient person on the planet, tried these last week and skipped this step. Needless to say, we ended up with less crunch and more mush.  
{amazingly, all of these chips came from just one potato} 
Once you pop them into the oven (set 400 degrees) you need to keep an eye on them. They bake up in less than 10 minutes and have a tendency to burn (especially the ones that are closest to the sides and back of your oven because those areas hold the most heat). 
Once you take them out, let them cool before serving to seal in the crunch-factor. Don’t leave them on the cookie sheet too long though or they’ll start to soak up the excess oil on the tray and can get soggy.
Then just serve and enjoy! 

Thursday, August 18, 2011

fond farewell

It’s amazing how quickly the time has passed over these last few weeks. I spent my last days in New York trying to cram in as much adventure as possible. From finally watching Cirque du Soleil at Radio City to drinks at our favorite spot in the Financial District. We even squeezed in a much anticipated trip to Eataly from some divine Italian nibbles. I had a wonderful time and I wish I could have done more, but boy does it feel good to be home!
{zarkana stage - no flash photography allowed & a lot of people moving around made it virtually impossible to get a good shot}
{drinks outside Ulysses on Stone St}
{fresh mozzarella, prosciutto and cherry tomatoes... i can think of few things in the world more delicious than that}
{my weakness - enormous wheels of parmesan cheese} 
{adorable aisles packed with italian goodies}
{glorious trays of fresh pasta}
I just really needed to see my dog, whip up some overly-complicated dish in my kitchen and get some sun (the way I was looking, I’m sure people were starting to doubt me when I said I was from Miami). School starts in a week though so as my to-do list gets longer I seem to skimping on the downtime, the one thing I feel like I've needed the most. Fortunately, I have a relaxing little afternoon planned with Brandy for mani-pedis.
Before I go though, I’ll leave you with a few of the little things I bought in New York before my trip home.
Sex and the City Mug I got at the HBO store (I love that it says “I’m not afraid of heights… have you seen my shoes?”)
Mustard yellow BCBG clutch I had been lusting after since my arrival in the big apple
DVF flip flops are the perfect way to dress up a beach day