Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Update: It's been too long.

Uhhh... So It's been way too long since I have experimented with dinner. It has been about five months since I have had a kitchen, or the internet.

Also, I hate to say it, but I sort of gave up on this too early.

Therefore, I will be revamping, with some cool recipes I concocted while I was away.
Photos however, I fear that I will not be able to provide. So as a (not so great) stand-in, I will implement the senses taste, smell and of course how delicious everything will look! Call it me, working on my imagery skills.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Delicious Carrot Fries

Here we have a sort or "roasted carrot", that has also been slightly "crunchified" so it may wield that name "Carrot Fry".

The inspiration came from the idea that just about anything can become a fry, and a not too greasy one.

The first taste reminded me of the perfect pairing of sweet and salty.
If you enjoy the taste of roasted carrots, you will love this. The procedure is simple, and very similar to making and type of fries, as well as carrots.

As for the prepping, I just scrubbed the carrots, cut off the ends, and then proceeded to slice each carrot into fry shapes:

Carrot Fries

After Preparation (simply explained above)

Turn oven to 425 degrees

Have a Med. sized saute pan ready with Olive oil on hand

Place carrots in pan and turn stove to Medium heat

Drizzle Olive oil on top of carrots, enough to layer the pan

Let carrots cook in pan until softened. This may take about fifteen minutes.

Prepare a non stick cookie sheet for the oven, and place carrot slices so they do not touch.
You may add your spices ( I used Sea Salt and black Pepper)

Watch carrots closely, as they should be ready fairly quickly. I would give it about ten minutes.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

How I became friends with the Yucca Root, and how Bob Marley introduced us.

Yucca Root, as defined by "Wikipedia" (because no where else had a descent description), "...is a woody shrub... native to South America that is extensively cultivated as an annual crop in and tropical and subtropical regions for its edible... root, a major source of carbohydrates."
It also goes on to explain that the root is mainly used to make Tapioca (yeah, like in your pudding!), noodles and flour products such as cakes and pastries.

I found it a bit odd that a food source so much like a potato (personally) has not been experimented further to make other tasty edibles. Well, I am sure many have, but I certainly have not uncovered any "interesting" recipes.

So, why am I interested in finding more uses of the Yucca? Well, if you have ever visited Universal Studios in Florida (could you have guessed that?) You may have noticed a little restaurant on City Walk:

"Bob Marley A Tribute to Freedom"

After a long day enjoying Universal for the first time, my sweet man and I settled in at this lovely little Cafe -style restaurant. This is where Yucca and I met.

When my entree arrived (Named "Reggae") the fries looked just like normal potato fries, except they had a deep golden orange tint, and a much thicker crisp skin to them. Paired with a spicy tomato-base sauce, these "fries" have been imprinted within my mind ever since.
This will be my second time attempting to make these fries, and I must admit that I have been much more successful! (yet, not entirely to Mr. Marley's standards).

Below, I will take you through the steps and hardships I endured while creating my own...

Yucca Root Fries

Where to start... well, I strongly suggest using a very safe peeler and a very sharp, non-serrated knife for cutting the root. I did not have a peeler on hand, so it was a b**** peeling off the waxy bark-like skin.

I cut off the ends, cut the root in half, then began to chop the root into "western style fries".
I suggest making your shapes small and thin, because I had many issues with such large pieces.

First, I chose to soak them overnight in the fridge. NO GOOD.
Second, I boiled them for approx. 25 mins. in a 2 quart pot med. high. VOILA!

At this point, I found it rather odd how the root separated, like a sweet potato (it was stringy/flaky). This may not have happened if I chose to cut them into smaller pieces. However, it was easy for me to tell that the root had softened enough to be nearly mushy. This was what I had hoped for.

The pot was emptied of water, and then I began to place the pieces on a cookie roll sheet.
Oven: 450 F
I sprinkled some MSG free salt, and black pepper.
I was very worried that the oven would dry out my root, so I watched it very closely for about 10-15 mins.

In the end, I chose to take them out and try Plan B: Pan Fried

Just a drizzle of Veggie Oil ( yes, I know I ran out of olive) and I fried on med. high for about five minutes on each side.

I was much happier with this result.

They had a mild crispiness, not too oily with a deep yellow tint and the inside retained its softness (a little mushy).

As for the taste, I would give it a "so-so", opposed to my lovey's "These are too delicious!"
The taste of starch is slightly overpowering, yet there is a hidden sweetness in the taste. Honestly though, I did not think of it any different from an unseasoned potato.

I would reccomend seasonings, perhaps a crab seasoning or just salt and pepper.

In a Nut Shell:
  • Peel root, cut ends of root, cut into halves
  • Cut into fry shapes
  • Boil on Medium High for 25 mins. or until tender
  • Prepare deep pan or fryer with oil of choice (med. high)
  • fry 5-7 mins. on each side
  • remove to drain of oil
  • season!
Pair with a dip like spicy ketchup, or tartar sauce