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May 032012
 

Good afternoon everyone! Happy Thursday! Personally, I love Thursdays. They mean my hard week is almost over and I still have the entire weekend ahead of me. Woohoo!

Workout

As you may have noticed, I didn’t post last night like usual. Why, you may be asking? Well you know those weeks where you burn, burn, burn…and then you crash? That’s what happened to me last night. Let me explain.

Monday and Tuesday I worked hard all day at the office, used my lunch break to update the blog, cardio-blasted my butt off doing Insanity when I got home, made a scrumptious dinner, and then blogged about my day. As much as I really enjoy all of those activities, by the time I got home last night it was almost 8:00 p.m. and I simply couldn’t do it all. Frankly, I was exhausted and just wanted a night off.

So, for my workout I did a few strength exercises involving my abs and Pilates moves. Then for dinner I made something simple and had Fabio help me put it all together. Then, instead of blogging like usual, I laid my head down and went to sleep. Yep, I was dead asleep merely an hour and half after I’d gotten home. I’ve learned that sometimes you have to listen to your body and let it tell you when it’s had enough. Last night what my body needed was sleep! Luckily I still ran yesterday morning so my workout wasn’t a total bust, but it definitely wasn’t up to its usual standards.

That meant this morning I woke up feeling quite refreshed and tackled my jog, with Fabio in tow, in no time. What a great way to start the day!

Recipe

Since I was so tired last night, I decided I wanted something easy and comforting for dinner. Obviously I wanted it to be relatively healthy as well, so I went scrounging in the cabinets. I came up with a bowl of potatoes which started growing little arms on them since I haven’t used them in a while. Oops. Luckily when potatoes start sprouting limbs you can just pop them off and still use the potato. It’s when they start to get mushy and wrinkle up on the outside that you should throw them out.

Anyway, these weren’t soft or wrinkly yet so I decided I better hurry up and eat them before they went bad. Luckily I knew just what I wanted to make…baked french fries! Through trial and error I’ve learned to make them so they get all nice and crispy on the outside and have a really great flavor. Yumm. Let’s get to it!

First I washed my potatoes and sliced them into french fry shapes (leaving the skin on, for more nutrition).

Next I boiled the potatoes in a pot of water for about 8 minutes, or until they were almost cooked through. You can either use a fork to test how done the potatoes are or, if you cut them thin enough, you can see they’ll start to look translucent. You don’t want the fork to come out too easily because they’re going to cook up a little more in the oven. Once they were done I drained the potatoes and let them cool for at least 5 minutes (they’re going to get a sprinkling of cheese and I didn’t want it to melt before they even made it into the oven).

Once the potatoes were cool enough to handle, I sprayed them with my Misto Olive Oil sprayer and dumped them into a large zip-lock bag with salt, pepper, Parmesan cheese, and dried rosemary. I shook them around until each potato was covered in seasoned yumminess and then laid them out on a rack on top of a foil-lined cookie sheet.

When baking things like french fries that I want to get nice and crispy, I always bake them on my cooling rack on top of a cookie sheet. This helps the hot air to circulate under the food so that all sides get the same amount of heat. I also like to line the cookie sheet with tin foil for easy clean up 🙂

Next I popped these into the oven and baked them at 450 degrees for about 4 minutes. I would recommend keeping a close eye on them because depending on how hot your oven gets or how close your rack is to the heating element, your cooking time might vary. You’ll know they’re done when they start to brown and the rosemary becomes fragrant (rosemary is my absolute favorite way to season potatoes, but you can use other herbs if you like).

Don’t they look awesome? I could go for some right now! Just remember when you eat these that potatoes are pretty high in starch and carbs so don’t go overboard on the portion. I like to limit myself to a small serving and then load up on the veggies. We had this last night with leftover Thai Turkey Burgers and a pig bile of steamed broccoli and spinach. Yum!

Ingredients

(Serves 2)

  • 2 small brown russet potatoes
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 2 tbsp. Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tsp. Rosemary (I used dried because that’s what I have on hand, but fresh works too)

Instructions

  1. Wash potatoes well and slice into long, thin fry shapes.
  2. Boil sliced  potatoes for about 8 minutes or until a fork comes out with just a bit of resistance.
  3. Drain potatoes and allow to cool for about 5 minutes.
  4. Move potatoes to a Zip Lock bag and add salt, pepper, cheese, and rosemary. Seal it up and shake until potatoes are well coated.
  5. Line a cookie sheet with foil and place a rack on top. Lay out potatoes on rack and bake at 450 degrees for about 4 minutes or until tops are brown and rosemary is fragrant.

Eat, and enjoy!

For me potatoes are one of my favorite comfort foods. My mom used to roast them in the oven with rosemary, and olive oil. While this is still one of my favorite foods, I try to lighten them up by using a lot less oil. What about you? What are your favorite comfort foods? Do you lighten them up or just enjoy them as they are?

 

 

 Posted by on May 3, 2012

  2 Responses to “Toasty Baked French Fries”

  1. I’m glad to know I wasn’t the only one struggling last night!! Your night sounds a lot like mine, except I didn’t lay my head down until after midnight. Whoops! Also, those fries look delicious! I’ve never thought about boiling them first – I usually roast mine, but it takes a good 40+ minutes! I might have to try it!

    In terms of comfort foods, I have a fiance from rural GA – so he’s ALL about the comfort foods. It’s now become a challenge for him to give me a comfort food (like loaded baked potato soup) and I’ll try and find a healthier, yet still tasty, recipe!

    • Yes, I like them roasted too but boiling them first helps them get cripsy when they go in the oven 🙂 yumm. And that sounds like a tough, but fun challenge! I grew up eating really decadent southern food too; my grandparents live in rural (like middle of NOWHERE) Virginia and my mom’s favorite chef is Paula Deen. She is literally the queen of butter! I like trying to lighten things up but it can be tricky!

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