Thursday, July 8, 2010

A Hamburger's Best Friend

Nothing goes better with a hamburger than french fries and some ice cold watermelon.  (I would personally be content just eating the entire watermelon as my dinner, but sadly to say, I had to share with the rest of my fruit loving family.  Don’t worry, one day soon there will be a post strictly dedicated to the delicious fruit that watermelon addicts like myself will love!)
Since the watermelon was already chilling and I didn’t have a deep frier handy, I had to improvise when it came to the french fries.  Instead of making the classic shoestring french fries, I made a side dish that my mom created that has quickly become a hit in our household that is quick, easy, and healthy-- oven-fried potato cubes!

~Oven-Fried Potato Cubes~

8 medium sized raw, peeled potatoes
1/2 a white onion
Season Salt
Pam Cooking Spray

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Cover a pan with aluminum foil and spray with a coat of cooking spray.  Chop potatoes into small cubes, placing them in an even layer on foil, and spray the cubes with aluminum foil.  Dice onion and saute over medium heat until they are caramelized.  Distribute over potatoes and bake until potatoes are tender (about 40 minutes) removing half way through to stir.  Remove the potatoes from the oven, sprinkle with season salt, and serve warm.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A Little Taste of Summer

Being from the wonderful city of Charlotte, North Carolina and attending college in Columbia, South Carolina, I seem to have developed a high tolerance for extreme heat and the even more oppressing humidity that comes with this southern territory.
Today, however, we topped out at 100 degrees (which is a little hot even for me).  Upon trying to think of something to cool me off after getting back from work, I opened the refrigerator and came face to face with a bucket of blackberries freshly picked from our backyard garden.  Now, I am typically not a huge fan of blackberries due to their seedy texture, but then I remembered a drink that my mom made last summer that helped me forget the stifling July heat-- Blackberry Lemonade.
After making some Kool-Aid lemonade, I set about making the blackberry syrup.  Despite my lack of knowledge when it comes to making syrup, it was an incredibly easy process.  This blackberry lemonade will quench your thirst quicker than you can break a sweat in this heat.  Enjoy your little taste of summer!

~Blackberry Syrup~
2 dozen fresh blackberries
1/2 a cup of sugar

Rinse the blackberries in a colander.  Over low heat, mix the blackberries and sugar in a saucepan.  Next, mash the berries with a potato masher.  Allow the mixture to simmer until bubbles appear around the edge of the saucepan.  Remove from heat and push the juice through a strainer or squeeze in a piece of cheesecloth to remove the seeds.  Add desired amount to freshly mixed, cold lemonade or store in an airtight container.

Here are a few of other ways that you can put this delicious syrup to good use:
  • Pour over some homemade vanilla ice cream
  • Drizzle over pancakes or waffles (just add a 2 Tbs cornstarch while boiling to thicken to your liking)
  • Add some to sweet tea for a twist on a southern classic

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Honeydew You Love Me?

Cooking= Love. My family and I can taste the love that my Mom cooks with when we sample her amazing food. I have watched her culinary talents with awe since I was sitting in my high chair in the kitchen. As soon as I was old enough to see over the counter, I was my Mom’s little helper-- chopping veggies and measuring ingredients. She has taught me everything I know about cooking.

When I left for college at the University of South Carolina in the fall of 2008, little time was left for cooking, especially since I shared an outdated 1970‘s kitchen with thirty-nine other co-eds. Needless to say, my cooking abilities during this first year were limited to dishes that could be warmed in the microwave.

When I moved into my apartment during my sophomore year, however, I had more room and better appliances that allowed me to experiment with different recipes. In my spare time, between classes and studying Organic Chemistry, my fascination with food grew. I began reading blogs and learning more about food through trial and error and under my Mom's tutelage.

“Honeydew you love me?” chronicles my adventures in the kitchen to make simple, delicious, and (mostly) healthy food to show my love for my family and friends. Tell someone you love them by making them something delicious!