Posts Tagged With: Potato

Fried Potato Straws

I have finally gotten down making thin crisp potato sticks to go with Gheimeh (Persian Split Pea Stew – with or without Beef).

The technique that seems to work best is to slice the potatoes with my mandolin. Then stack a few slices and cut them thinly lengthwise.

Two russet potatoes make a whole lot of potato sticks, but there never seem to be enough to keep my family happy. I guess that’s a good thing.

Fried Potato Straws

from Guy Fieri 

Canola oil, for frying

2 russet potatoes

1 teaspoon kosher salt

4 or 5 turns freshly ground black pepper

Pour canola oil into a deep cast-iron skillet to a depth of 1 1/2  to 2 inches. Heat over high heat to 350 degrees F. Line a plate with paper towels.

While the oil is heating, lightly scrub the potatoes with a firm brush under running water. Use a mandoline very thinly slice the potatoes lengthwise. Stack the slices and very thinly slice them lengthwise to make long thin straws.

Rinse the potato straws under cold running water. This rinses off the starch and makes the straws nice and crispy. Pat dry on paper towels.

Working in batches, fry the potatoes in the oil until golden brown and crispy, 2 to 3 minutes.

With a slotted spoon or spider, transfer the straws to the paper towel-lined plate.

Season with salt and pepper immediately and serve.

Categories: Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | Leave a comment

Broccoli Cheese Latkes

The groundhog had attacked my broccoli, ate all the best parts, but left some leaves. So I left the plants in the garden.  Two months later, I have broccoli!


These latkes are delicious! I can’t wait to make them again for Hanukah. Tonight we had them with eggs – one of my favorite ways to eat latkes. The bread on the side is a spinach-ricotta stuffed challah, but that would be a story for another day.


Broccoli Cheddar Latkes

Nina Safar1 lb. of broccoli florets, chopped and steamed (from the garden)
1 russet potato, peeled and grated
1 small onion, diced
1/2 cup of panko crumbs
2 eggs (from Farmer Kim)
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup canola oil
oil for fryingDirections
Steam and chop the broccoli florets.img_3598

Place in large mixing bowl. Add the grated potato, diced onion, panko crumbs, eggs, pepper, salt, cayenne pepper, flour, cheese and oil.


Mix well.


Shape into patties and fry until golden brown.


Drain on paper towels.


Serve and enjoy!


Serves 4 – 5

Categories: Broccoli, Hanukah, Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Spinach & Potato Frittata

I am finally harvesting some spinach from the garden!! Spring must actually be here (even if the sun hasn’t made an appearance yet).

It has been a frustrating spring.  First, the groundhog came back and ate all the greens I planted (except spinach, he doesn’t like spinach). Then I put up a solar powered electric fence to keep him out, which it did, until we had about 10 days without sun and the battery died. So that day he devastated the garden again. But the sun peaked out enough to charge the battery and we were back on the following day.

But it has been so cold and rainy, that all the plants are running a few weeks behind schedule.  I planted some of my tomato seedlings, but something at their tops.  And the rest of the seedlings are taking a long time to get big enough.  And all the rain has, I think, rotted the seeds I planted. So it looks like I will be buying tomato zucchini and winter squash plants.  At least my strawberries and snap peas are happy (they got established before the endless rains). Now, if I only get some sun, there will be strawberries!

Spinach & Potato Frittata

adapted from Tori Avey Potato Crusted Spinach Frittata

2 medium russet potatoes, ~1 lb. total

8 eggs

1 Tbsp water

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 Tbsp olive oil

2 cups fresh spinach, roughly chopped (from the garden)

1 cup crumbled  feta cheese 



Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Shred the potatoes using the food processor’s shredding blade. Place the potato in a bowl and cover with cold water. Let them sit for a few minutes while you prep the other ingredients.


Beat the eggs with the water, salt and pepper until fluffy. Set aside.


Place a cast iron skillet on the stove and heat over medium high heat. While heating, drain the potato in a colander, then place them in the middle of a clean tea towel.


Squeeze the shreds in the tea towel to remove excess liquid.


When the skillet is hot, pour 3 tbsp olive oil into it. It should be hot enough that you’ll see wisps of smoke coming from the surface. Immediately spread out the potato into the bottom of the skillet, forming an even layer of shreds along the bottom. The potato should sizzle.


Cover the skillet with a lid (any pot lid that covers the top will do) . Let the potatoes cook for 5 minutes. Uncover the skillet. Spread out the chopped spinach evenly across the top of the potatoes in a single layer. Recover the skillet for 1 minute longer until the spinach is slightly wilted.


Uncover the skillet and sprinkle evenly with the crumbled cheese.


Re-beat the eggs, then pour evenly across the top of the cheese to cover.


Place the skillet into the preheated oven and let it cook at 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center of the skillet comes out clean. Remove the frittata from the oven and let it cool for 5 minutes on the stovetop. Serve and enjoy!

Serves 6


Categories: Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Spinach | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Creamy Sunchoke & Asparagus Soup

After many nights of heavy Passover foods, I was craving soup. Plus, I had stopped at one of our local orchards on my drive home from a client meeting and picked up some just-picked asparagus. Asparagus and my Jerusalem artichokes…a happy combo!

The soup looks rich and tastes rich, but is so light and healthy! Perfection!

Creamy Sunchoke and Asparagus Soup

Very slightly adapted from

1 pound fresh asparagus (from T.S. Smith & Sons)

1 large white potato, peeled and cut into 1/2″ dice ~ 1 1/2 cups diced potato

1/2 pound Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and cut into 1/2″ dice (from the garden)

2 large shallots, peeled and sliced

1/4 tsp Kosher salt

2 tablespoons high quality extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

3 cups chicken stock 


Slice off the tips of the asparagus about 1 – 1 1/2 inches long and reserve. Trim the woody ends and discard. Cut the remaining spears into 1″ pieces and set aside.

In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots and salt. Cook until the shallots soften and become translucent – do not brown the shallots.

Add the asparagus, potato and Jerusalem artichokes to the shallots. Add stock, cover and bring just to a boil. Turn down the heat to simmer and cook for 20 minutes until vegetables are tender.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, bring a cup of water to a boil. Prepare an ice bath by adding 1 cup of ice and 1 cup water into a bowl and set aside.

Add the asparagus tips to the boiling water and cook for 1-2 minutes until just tender. Use a slotted spoon or spider to transfer the asparagus tips from the boiling water to the ice bath to shock them and stop the cooking. Set aside until ready to serve.

When the vegetables are tender, use an immersion blender and puree until smooth. Season as necessary with the kosher salt and pepper.

To serve, ladle the soup into bowls and swirl a teaspoon of olive oil over each bowl. Divide the asparagus tips among the bowls and float them in the soup. Enjoy!

Serves 4.


Categories: Asparagus, Jerusalem Artichokes, Kosher, Passover, Recipe, Soup, Vegetarian | Tags: | 1 Comment

Potato Latkes with Pepper Jack Cheese

I thought I was done with innovative ways to make yummy potato latkes last year when I did the golden latkes with turmeric. But then I saw a little blurb in Food Network Magazine’s 50 cheese appetizers for pepper jack latkes.  Ooh, that was intriguing.  These vie with the spinach, potato and feta latkes for my all time favorite latkes.IMG_8698.JPGWe enjoyed the spiciness the pepper jack added; if you want a milder version, use plain Monterrey jack cheese. The grated carrots added a nice sweetness as well.IMG_8695.JPGThese latkes make a hearty dinner paired with a nice salad.  In this case it was an avocado caesar salad…yum.IMG_8699.JPG

Pepper Jack Potato Latkes

slightly adapted from Food Network Magazine

2 russet potatoes

2 carrots

1 egg, beaten (locally raised)

1 small onion, grated

1 cup pepper jack cheese, shredded

1/3 cup panko breadcrumbs

1 tsp Kosher salt

freshly ground black pepper to taste

safflower oil

sour cream or plain yogurt (we use yogurt)


Peel and grate the potatoes and carrots. Squeeze dry.IMG_8695.JPG

In a bowl, mix egg, onion, cheese, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper.  Mix in the potatoes and carrots.IMG_8697.JPG

Heat 1/4 inch safflower oil in a cast iron or nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Form potato mixture into pancakes and cook in batches until golden, about 3 minutes per side.IMG_8698.JPG

Serve with sour cream or plain yogurt.IMG_8699.JPG

Serves 4 – 6.

Categories: Carrot, Hanukah, Jewish Holiday, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | 1 Comment

Tapas Cooking Class in Barcelona

What was the best meal my daughters and I had in Barcelona? It was, surprisingly, the one we and our fellow students made at Barcelona Cooking.


We arrived to this beautiful workspace… IMG_1948

Then we met our fellow students and instructor, and were divided into pairings for each tapa.


I was paired with a lovely woman from Canada to make a fancy version of Patatas Bravas.


Arielle was paired with a man from Switzerland for Gazpacho.


And Emily worked with a woman from Switzerland on Sobrassada & Pear Pincho.


Aside from learning to cook a few great dishes, I learned a number of things I did not know.  Key among them was to use regular olive oil, not extra virgin, for cooking over heat. Why, the smoking point. EVOO breaks down over high heat and releases toxins, regular olive oil, made with both cold and hot pressings, stands up to the heat of cooking. EVOO is best used raw. Honestly, this blew my mind!

I also learned that Arielle can use a kitchen torch without burning the house down.


At home I will make a healthier version of Patatas Bravas cooking the potatoes in the oven, but here I will share a version of the recipe we used.

Patatas Bravas

slightly adapted from Barcelona Cooking

16 baby/new potatoes, scrubbed

1 medium onion, sliced julienne

10g spicy Spanish (smoked) paprika

1 clove garlic

2 lbs tomatoes

1/8 – 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (to taste, less if you want less heat in the sauce)

10g sweet Spanish (smoked) paprika

1 egg

1 cup olive oil



Cut the tomatoes in half and pressing the flesh-side against the grater, grate the tomatoes into a bowl, discard the skin.

Hollow out the center of each potato with a small melon-baller.

In a deep skillet, heat about 2 1/2 inches of olive oil over low heat. Confit the potatoes by submerging them in the oil and gently cook until they are tender. Remove the potatoes from the oil and set-aside. Turn off the heat but leave the oil in the pan for the second round of frying.

In another skillet, sweat the onion until the strips are tender but not browned (just starting to turn color). Then add the two types of paprika to the pan, as well as the cayenne pepper, and cook gently for two more minutes. Add the tomatoes to the pan and allow the mixture to simmer for 20 mins before blending and straining the resulting sauce (we didn’t strain the sauce).


Set the sauce aside for when it is time to plate the potatoes.

Make the alioli: blend the egg, garlic, and one cup of oil with a hand blender until thick and creamy, add salt to taste and set this sauce aside as well. Note:  Hold the blender still until the sauce is about 3/4 emulsified, then you can move it around.

To finish the patatas bravas fry the potatoes again, in very hot oil (around 375F) until crisp and golden brown. Once done, move them to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain. For serving fill each potato with some of the red brava sauce, then top that sauce with a dollop of white alioli. Serve and Enjoy!!


Makes 8 servings, with extra sauce for other use.


Categories: Kosher, Recipe, Tomatoes, Vegetarian | Tags: | 1 Comment

Tuna and Green Bean Salad

It was a beautiful day, capped off with an afternoon kayak on Silver Lake.  We saw great blue herons and osprey; one osprey even swooped down right over us. And, my son learned how to paddle, he did great, even matched his paddling pace to mine!


When you are out in the sun all afternoon, you don’t want a hot dinner, so it was the perfect night for a tuna and green bean salad.


It was bright from the lemon juice, basil and parsley. Bit also hearty, with the potatoes and green beans. We were hungry and this, somewhat to our surprise, really hit the spot.

Tuna and Green Bean Salad

from Giada De Laurentiis

1 1/2 pounds slender green beans, trimmed, halved crosswise (from the garden)

3 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste

2 large red potatoes, diced

1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon dried oregano (from the garden)

3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

8 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves (from the garden)

1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves (from the garden)

9 ounces canned tuna packed in oil, drained


Cook the green beans in a large pot of boiling water until crisp-tender, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Using a mesh strainer, transfer the green beans to a large bowl of ice water to cool completely. Drain the green beans and pat dry with a towel.


Add 2 teaspoons of salt to the same cooking liquid and bring the liquid to a simmer. Add the potatoes to the simmering liquid and cook until they are just tender but still hold their shape, about 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer the potatoes to the ice water to cool completely. Drain the potatoes and pat dry with a towel.


In a small bowl, whisk the lemon juice, garlic, oil, oregano, 1 teaspoon salt and 3/4 teaspoon pepper.


Place the tomatoes, basil and parsley in a large serving bowl.


Add the tuna and toss gently to combine.


Add the green beans and potatoes and gently combine.


Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat. Enjoy!


Serves 4.

Categories: Green Beans, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Tomatoes | Tags: | 1 Comment

Microwave Potato Chips

While Cam and I were home on our spring “staycation”, I decided to try making a treat I had recently seen – microwave potato chips.  No matter how many times I heard that they tasted just like chips out of the bag, I was skeptical.  And my first few batches confirmed my skepticism – they were just not crisping up right.  I tried a variety of different recipes, then decided to follow my own instincts, and…wow! It was snacking time!


Is that a perfect chip or not?! They were crispy and full of flavor.  In fact, Cam took the bowl and basically threatened me if I ate any of “his” chips.  The best part – these are healthy (another plus – Kosher for Passover).

Microwave Potato Chips

1 russet potato (or as many as you want to make, a medium russet makes about 60 chips)

Bowl of cold water

Olive oil mister (if you do not have one use an olive oil cooking spray)

Kosher salt


Scrub the potato and slice very thin using a mandoline (I did about 1/16th inch thick). It works easiest if you cut the potato in half and slice one-half, place them in a bowl of cold water, then do the same with the other half.


Rinse the potatoes until the water runs clear, typically 3 water changes in the bowl.  Dry the potatoes using a salad spinner (or in a single layer between 2 clean dish towels).


Line a microwave dinner plate with paper towels.  Lay the potatoes out in 1 layer, not touching each other.  Spray lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. One potato will take about 4 batches to make.


Microwave for 4 minutes. Flip and microwave for another 3 minutes – checking after 2 minutes to remove any chips that have crisped up and browned. Lay out on another plate to cool.




Categories: Kosher, Passover, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | 1 Comment

Golden Latkes with Turmeric

Happy Hanukkah!!

Just when you think there can be no other ways to make potato latkes, along comes turmeric. Turmeric is a member of the ginger family with an orange-yellow color when dried and ground. I love turmeric and the color it imparts on food; these latkes are flavorful and beautifully golden.


I adapted this recipe from one I found on Eating Well.  I prefer to remove the excess moisture from my potatoes and onions, so I needed to reduce the amount of chickpea flour used.  They also included a spiced applesauce, which I did not make since I know it would not go over well with my family, so we used plain applesauce.


What a great way to celebrate Hanukkah!


Golden Latkes with Turmeric

Adapted from

2 cups grated russet potatoes

1 small onion, grated or finely chopped

1-2 fresh serrano chiles, stemmed, seeded and finely chopped

1/3 cup chickpea flour or unbleached white flour

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp Kosher or sea salt

1/2 tsp turmeric

2 large eggs, slightly beaten (locally raised)

2 tablespoons canola oil, divided


Heat oven to 200F.  Place a baking sheet in the oven.

Place the potatoes and onions into a cheesecloth or clean dish towel and squeeze out the excess moisture.


Add serrano chiles, flour, seasonings and eggs.


Mix well.


Heat 1 Tbsp oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat.  Place a heaping Tbsp of the potato mixture in the skillet and flatten with a spatula into a disk about 3” in diameter.  Do not overcrowd them in the pan.


Cook until golden brown and crispy on the bottom, about 3-5 minutes.  Flip and cook until the other side is golden brown and crisp, about another 3-5 minutes.


Briefly drain on paper towels then transfer to the baking sheet in the oven.


Serve with applesauce and enjoy!


Makes approx. 12 latkes, 6 servings.

Categories: Hanukah, Jewish Holiday, Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Roasted Fall Vegetables with Pumpkin Seed Oil


It was a night when I needed to make a relatively fast dinner, but had no idea what I wanted to make.  I stopped at one of the local farm markets and picked up a cauliflower; I decided I would do something with the cauliflower and some of the sweet potatoes from my garden.  When I got home I also found a nice russet potato in my bin (potatoes are one food I tend to buy with a specific purpose in mind and then totally forget about the purpose and the potato).  IMG_8434.JPGWith those three ingredients I opted for roasting them.  The key to making it quick was to chop everything very small, but not quite diced.IMG_8436.JPGI wanted to add a twist to the vegetables, so in addition to olive oil, I used a touch of pumpkin seed oil.  The finished vegetables could be used as a side dish with various meats, but we ate them topped with fried eggs.  I LOVE roasted vegetables with eggs – fried, poached, in an omelet.  THe combinations just doesn’t seem to go wrong.IMG_8442.JPG

Roasted Fall Vegetables with Pumpkin Seed Oil

1/2 large cauliflower (locally grown)

1 medium potato

3 medium sweet potatoes (from the garden)

1 – 2 Tbsp olive oil

1 tsp pumpkin seed oil

Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper


Heat oven to 400F.

Cut all the vegetables into small pieces, just a bit larger than diced.IMG_8436.JPGPlace in a large bowl and toss with the two oils, salt and pepper to taste. Spread in single layers onto two baking sheets.IMG_8438.JPG

IMG_8437.JPG Cook for 20 minutes, then stir the vegetables, flipping them over. Cook for another 15 minutes and check for doneness – they should be nicely browned.  If they are not ready, stir again and cook another 5 – 10 minutes.IMG_8441.JPG Remove from oven and serve. Enjoy!IMG_8443.JPGServes 2 as a main dish with eggs or 4 as a side dish.


Categories: Cauliflower, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Sweet Potatoes, Vegetarian | Tags: | Leave a comment

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