Recipe: Baked Dill Potato fries

I lived the majority of my life in Idaho, so I kind of know a thing or two about potatoes. I know, it sounds cliched, but it’s true.

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It’s been raining all week, so I’ve been wanting some comfort food, since it’s hard to get out and do any gardening. However, the volunteer dill in my herb garden is loving this weather, so I have more than enough to last me for the rest of the summer. This is a really simple recipe, but it’s wonderful in a pinch and it highlights exactly how little you need to do to potatoes to make them work.

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Baked Dill Potato Fries

4-6 medium potatoes
3-5 sprigs fresh dill
1-2 tsps olive oil

Peel potatoes or scrub potatoes thoroughly and wash. Pat dry.
Cut potatoes lengthwise in quarters. Cut each quarter into 1/4 to 1/2 inch slices. Pieces should be about the size of a quarter and about as thick as a domino.
Toss with olive oil and minced dill. Sesame or peanut oil can also be used for different flavor. Instead of dill, carraway, crushed red pepper, or freshly ground black pepper can be substituted.
Spread over cookie sheet evenly, making sure that each piece touches the sheet. Use multiple cookie sheets if too dense. Grease cookie sheet with butter if potatoes were not dried to prevent sticking.
Bake in pre-heated 400 F oven for 20-30 minutes or until bottom of pieces are crisped. A grill can also be used — wrap potatoes in foil and set on grill near but not over fire and allow to cook for ~ 10-20 minutes or until tender.

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Potatoes have been given a bad rep by health folk because of carbohydrate levels, but they’re a good source of potassium — and they naturally have a bit of a salty taste to them despite low sodium levels. Potato skins are specifically high in nutrients in general — and it so much easier to not have to peel before cutting… I’ve been tracking my diet on Sparkpeople, and one of the trends I’ve been noticing is that I’m always low on magnesium and potassium despite nerding out over spinach and oatmeal. Considering how important potassium is for cellular activity, I’ve been trying to find ways to get more into my diet. I’ll hopefully have a coconut-based recipe soon…
Fresh dill has a really strong scent when picked, but heat denatures this enough during the cooking process that the taste does not overpower the potato. If you like the strong dill taste, it would be useful to also add crushed dill seed about halfway through.

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A Gift for the Old Man

Sunday was Father’s day — which in my family is usually Give-Dad-Socks-and-Underwear Day. Gifts for my father are roughly divided into two categories: necessities and expensive junk. Lately, the expensive junk that the Man wants is way too expensive and the socks and underwear have been piling up. There really wasn’t anything else in the stores that that I knew the Old Man would want, so I decided to make something that I knew he would both like and use.

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The Old Man has been using a walker for a while now and has been pretty frustrated about not being able to carry things with him around the house. This Father’s Day, I wanted to make him something so that he could be a bit more comfortable using his walker. There are a few walker tote designs floating around, and the best ones I have found are all free (woo!). I settled on the Walker Tote Bag design from JimmieWriter because of the super-easy instructions as well as the ease of use that the bag would have. Since my old man isn’t that good at tying bows or buttoning buttons, I wanted something that he could easily put on or take off his walker by himself. A lot of guys might not like something like this as a gift, but I was about 97.8% sure my father would see its utility (and like the camo).

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I made the tote exactly like Jimmiewriter explained in the video walkthrough, but I think that I would add a few more lines of stitches to reinforce the pockets if I ever did it again. Making this was incredibly easy, though — probably the hardest part was putting the velcro on. 

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The other nice thing about this tutorial was how easy it was to use the finished product for furushiki gift wrap:Image

This wrapped two paperback novels very thoroughly. ….To be honest, the Man didn’t really know what the tote was at first. Once we showed him, though, he was pretty happy with it. While it’s probably not the most professional of accessories to take out in public, it works really well for him to carry his phone and books around the house.

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I <3 Loving Day

Here’s one not-so-good thing about Eastern Washington: It doesn’t have an organized Loving Day event. Loving Day celebrates the Loving vs. Virginia case of 1967 — that is, the landmark case that outlawed anti-miscegenation.

Loving Day is June 12th, but is still a grassroots movement that has not been recognized nationally (unlike Red Rose Day, which is also today and may have been imported to the US from Australia).

The closest event for Loving Day just happened in Seattle… Instead of that, I made something to share with my Loving-style family:

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I have been wanting to make a bunting ever since I was about 4 years old — it was so easy to make that I’m not sure why I waited so long to do it. I more or less looked at a lot of tutorials and used what I had on hand, but the closest tutorial to my method is from Glorious Treats.

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The fabric I used had a lot of give, so the measurements weren’t exactly perfect. I remeasured and corrected as I sewed and turned, and it more or less worked out.

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To be honest, the cutting was the hardest part. Everything got easier after the flags, since I used double-fold bias tape and iron-on transfers.

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The nice thing about this bunting is that the other side is plain, so it can easily be used any other day of the year. I’ve put it up right in the entrance of my house (not pictured because it needs to be painted), and it gives a summery, shabby-marine look perfect for June.

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