Sunday, May 13, 2012

Make your own potato chips - FAST!

I didn't believe this was possible.  Neither did my daughter when I mentioned to her today that I have a recipe for microwaved potato chips that taste great - and turn out crispy.  I think her exact words were: "No way!!" 

I found a recipe for these economical, tasty, easy chips not too long ago and had to try it - I have some fairly serious chipaholic tendencies.  I had on hand a potato, some oil, salt, and a microwave - and that's all it takes.

Start by pouring about 1 Tablespoon of light oil (I used canola) into a gallon-size ziploc bag.  Add 1 very thinly sliced potato and shuffle the slices around a bit until they are lightly coated all around.  You can leave the skins on the potato slices if you like - I did.  Use a mandoline slicer or an old-fashioned potato slicer to get the slices as thin as possible - that's part of the secret to crispiness.  (Watch your knuckles and always use that little potato-holder-thingie to keep your fingers from being sliced!)  I used a regular Idaho baking potato and I think I'll try sweet potatoes next.  Or - how about Yukon Gold!

Coat a dinner plate with oil or cooking spray.  Place the potato slices in a single layer on the plate.

Microwave on max power for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the centers begin to be lightly browned.  If they do not brown, they won't be crispy. Times will vary depending on the power of your microwave, so PLEASE watch them carefully. 

Sprinkle with salt and/or other seasonings.  This is the best part - you can use bbq seasonings, herbs, garlic, seasoned salt, ranch dressing mix, sea salt, anything you have on hand!  It's best to be light-handed with the seasonings until you taste a few - it doesn't take much.  My preference is plain ol' salt.  Remove from the plate and let them cool for a couple of minutes on a paper towel - this is when they get crispy. 

Repeat the process until, if you are eating them as quickly as we did, you run out of potatoes.  Re-oiling the plate is not necessary every time, but you may want to if you slice up more than one potato.   

Chip heaven.  Any time you want.  They don't keep especially well, so you'll have to eat them all.  If you have a problem with that, just call me...

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Across the Atlantic

It's been a month since we returned from an incredible 12-day trans-Atlantic cruise. The ship was the Seabourn Odyssey, embarking from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and sailing eastward to Lisbon, Portugal. The Odyssey made only one stop for an afternoon in Funchal, Madeira.

Pictures really do say more than words. Mere words cannot explain it all, nor express the beauty of the ship, the utter blueness of the sea, the sunsets, the exquisite food, and the staff who were determined to make every passenger's trip the best ever. The nearly 400 passengers/400 staff ratio allowed us to get to know not only some wonderful new friends but also some of the crew on a first-name basis.
Sunsets like this...every night!

Nigerian Shrimp - This is a dinner plate, with one split shrimp!
An incredible warm chocolate souffle.  The waiter cut it open and spooned in the custard at the table.

The main pool and deck area - a gathering place during each sunny day.  And all the days were sunny.
Water everywhere - and we didn't get tired of it.  The days flew!

So grab a cup of tea and visit to see many more photos. You will find a whole gallery of food, more ship photos, and some shots around Funchal and from the tram that took us up the hillside for a bird's eye view.

In Funchal

We invite your comments, here, on Smugmug, on Facebook,anywhere - we're pleased to be able to share this journey with you.  Did we like it?  We loved it!  Would we do it again?  In a heartbeat! You might think that after 12 days on a ship we'd be ready to go home. Quite the opposite - we were sorry to have to leave this new little world we'd found; so perfect, so delicious, so friendly!