Monday, August 28, 2006

Sundays are for Cooking

My obsession with removing every last bit of clutter from my life had kept me away from the kitchen for a long stretch of days, and it was making me cranky (and hungry!).

But yesterday the pull to the kitchen was utterly magnetic, and piles be damned, I found myself going crazy in the kitchen for much of the morning and evening.

First up: easy home fries that are crispy and golden brown. I learned this little trick when I worked at Bette's Diner in Berkeley. In fact, I learned quite a lot about food while working there. Perhaps I'll have to interview Bette herself for a future posting; now there's a woman who can cook!

Anyway, the trick is, you gotta fry the onions separate from the potatoes, and don't combine the two until you're ready to eat.

So it goes like this: take your 6 to 8 organic yellow finn potatoes (or whatever you like) and lightly steam them. While they are steaming, dice an onion - it can be white, yellow or red; whatever suits your fancy. Dice a little garlic and set it aside. Now start frying the onion in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently. I like to cook the onions slowly so they turn golden brown and begin to carmelize. This takes about 20 minutes.

Once the potatoes are steamed, cut them into quarters (or smaller if you like little bites) and fry them in a separate pan w/ just a small bit of oil. I do this in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, flipping occasionally. When the potatoes are mostly golden brown all over, throw in a little bit of minced garlic and sautee for a few minutes more, then add a sprinkling of salt, and whatever dried spices you have laying around. In this case I used this tasty all purpose seasoning mix called Vegit. But you can also use curry powder, dried oregano or basil, or even fresh herbs. Use your imagination; it's fun!

Now combine the potatoes and onions, and if you're feeling inspired, garnish with some thinly sliced green onions.

Stuff yourself, and then waddle around the house for a bit trying to get organized until you can't stand the drudgery any longer. Take your coveted Rick Bayless cookbook and head to your local Mexican grocer. Stock up on black beans, herbs, chiles, and all the fixin's for an exquisite Mexican feast. Who the hell cares if the weekend is over and it's 10 pm by the time you get to sit down and eat? Getting there is so much fun...

To be continued!


MissNoNo said...

I'll give you some VEG-IT!!

MissNoNo said...

Val! You are the best cook ever. Thanks for always taking care of me with food. You make me want to cook more.