Friday, June 10, 2011

Lay's, Garden Tomato, Basil, Me and always My Gardner Guy....and now the Sundried Tomatoe Basil fry...

I know you are wondering Georgie what are you doing now. I will tell you, these chips are sinfully good!!! About six months ago thoughts about starting some kind of lunch delivery business was consuming my mind. In the process I was looking for a good potato chip to pair up with lunch menus. After tasting quite a few I stumbled on two flavors I loved. Lay's Garden Tomato and Basil, and Lay's Balsamic Sweet Onion. Both are so delicious that neither one has a chance of lasting more that a day in our home. This of course is cool for My Gardner Guy...he loves devouring them. I on the other hand have a love hate relationship with them because I loose all control in regards to portion size and I eat the whole bag. Well one night I was thinking, I do a lot of that when it comes to food, the thought came to create my own seasoning for a Garden Tomato and Basil baked french fry. I have since experimented with this concept and have come up with a recipe. Oh thank you Lay's you have inspired me!!!

You will need:

4 baking potatoes
1/4 cup olive oil (I use Kangaroo Paw, pretty bottles)
1 cup of dried tomatoes (I dry my own)
See dried tomato tips at the end of this post...
3/4 tsp dried basil
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp dried garlic
1/4 tsp onion power
1/4 tsp brown sugar

Four baking potatoes medium size is what I used, this size fits well in my french fry cutter.

This is a nice tool to have in any home kitchen you can usually pick it up for under $20.00. The Progressive International Vegetable/French Fry Cutter
by Progressive International.

No worries if you do not have one simply cut up your potatoes in french fry pieces like this. I prefer to leave the potato skins on. Either way is good, it's just personal preference. Put your potato slices in a large mixing bowl. Starting with 1/8 cup of oil drizzle on the potatoes giving them a fine coating. Reserve the rest.

Grind up one cup of sun dried tomatoes, I use a small coffee grinder. Pour grounded up tomatoes into a small bowl. Add salt, basil, garlic (or garlic power), onion power or minced onions (grind in the coffee grinder), brown sugar. Mix all dry ingredients and pour over potato fry slices in large mixing bowl. Stir and allow seasoning to coat all the potato fries good. At this time you may want to add all or a portion of the remaining olive oil. This again is personal preference. I have done this recipe quite a few times now. In the past I grounded up my tomatoes to a real fine grind. Today I did a coarser grind, I now know for sure I like a medium finer grind. In the pictures that I post today they will show a coarser grind on the tomatoes. This again is personal preference notice the different settings on a small coffee grinder.

Sun dried tomatoes ground up, brown sugar, salt, basil, onion power and garlic

Notice the Grinder, it has different settings....again this is personal preference, experimenting is fun!!! Another sweet little gadet to have in your home kitchen...

Hamilton Beach 80344Z Custom Grind

Transfer fries to a large baking sheet and bake at 450 degrees for 30-35 minutes...
For the first 15 minutes cover with foil...this keeps them from getting to brown to soon.

What's for lunch today and what's for dinner tonight?

Brooke is attending and finishing up her beauty/hair school program over the summer. She has a little under 600 hours left to finish. Where she was living before her commute time to and from school was over 45 minutes to an hour. She has decided to move in with us cutting down her commute time to 10 minutes. Now she is subject to testing all my food. Today for lunch quick tortilla meat wraps.

Spinach and Sun dried Tomato Basil Wraps with Meat

Today I used...
Mission brand the Sun dried Tomato Wrap and Garden Spinach Wrap
(I often make my own, still for sake of time occasionally I buy them).
3 to 4 ozs. per wrap of chipped lunch meats, I used ham, turkey, and roast beef...when I make this for My Gardner Guy I use more meat, he likes that!
1/2 cup Spinach leaves cut Julienne style
1/8 cup of onions finely diced
1/8 cup of tomatoes finely diced
1/8 cup green or red peppers finely diced
1/8 cup of olives finely diced
1/8 cup cucumbers finely diced
1/2 cup of cheese (any flavors work) I used mild cheddar today
A little feta, or even goat cheese...I use Athenos Feta Cheese today
A sour cream spread, any kind meaning I have made my own like garden vegetable dip, dill dip, sun dried tomato dip, just cream cheese, or sour cream. Today I used a Stonemill Kitchens Brand with peppercorn garlic and herbs added in it.

Julienne cut the spinach...
Start out by layering the spinach leaves on top of each other

Diagonally begin to slice the spinach in thin strips

Spinach will look like this when you are finished

Lets get started...

Spread on the spread of your choice, today I used Stonemill Kitchens Brand with peppercorn garlic and herbs

Starting at the edge of tortilla layer on your chipped lunch meats, I like a mixture of different meats. When I make this for My Gardner Guy I put extra meat on; he likes that, it makes him smile, I like his smile...

Layer on the onions, peppers, tomatoes, olives, cucumbers, cheese, feta cheese, I put the spinach on last

Now fold in the sides, keep mixture together and roll up tight and carefully not to tear the wrap

Cut in half on a diagonal and get ready to serve up a nice lunch or dinner... I made another one for dinner for My Gardner Guy, I added my Tomatoe and Basil fries with My Gardner's Guy favorite gourmet applesauce...Add some cold apple juice, it made him smile...I like it when he smiles!!!

Did you know...?
Sun drying is an old mediterranean tradition that has recently become very popular because of the dried tomatoes intense flavor. Many of the sun dried tomatoes on the market today are actually oven dried in California. Tomatoes are reduced to a leathery pouch and then left or packed in olive oil. They are available for sale year round. I like to dry my own, you can find loads of information that will tell you how to sun dry tomatoes, oven dry tomatoes or even use a dehydrator.
Sun dried tomatoes are easily revitalized; 3 ounces of dried tomatoes will plump up to 2 cups if placed in boiling water for 2 minutes. Diced sun dried tomatoes add lots of piz-zazz to soups, stews, casseroles, pizzas, dips and salad dressings. Added to tomato dishes or topped on a baked potato with sour cream and sun dried tomatoes gives you that extra burst of flavor.
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