Thursday, March 21, 2013

Spring Outtakes
 crash hot potatoes

Okay so, I initially had this idea—no wait, first I had this idea that the way I write this blog is like a magazine, you know, where every season is like an issue? Which made me think that I should start every season with, like, a magazine cover. Sometimes, though, when you can't get started on something it's because your undermind doesn't like the idea. Because Samantha Irby's Cosmopolitan covers are already out there and hilarious, and yes, I was imagining myself on the cover a la Oprah Magazine and not so much a beautiful dish a la Bon Appetit, which I don't know why I wasn't thinking that, but anyway, my self-esteem is honestly okay but I just don't want a giant picture of my face, you know, in my face. Analyze this all you want, but I spend a lot of time in my head and not a lot looking at my face. So I know the former a lot better than the latter, and am as comfortable as a pile of puppies with you with me in my head. Whereas looking at some art exhibit of my face, the quote that comes to mind is:

and suddenly, under the weight of her regard and of Arthur's overintroduction, I felt compelled to impress but no longer wanted to—I wanted to back up the hallway, put on a pair of black horn-rims and a heavy coat, and come out again, this time farting and seized with grotesque tics

--Michael Chabon, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh
Which I located in three and a half seconds by googling "mysteries of pittsburgh farting tics," by the way. Truly we live in a golden age.

It's funny, though. My mind really is a lot weirder than my face.

Look, potatoes!

crash hot potatoes

These are The Pioneer Woman's Crash Hot Potatoes that I pinned last month. They're really good, but they are not going to be in the spring issue. I mean, they're here now. I was thinking that my style is already so five point essay, this is what I'm going to say, this is what I'm saying, this is what I said—you know what my dad used to say all the time, preview, review, treeview, augh, worst earworm ever—so why don't I show you something that you're not going to see three versions of coming up.

I did spend a lot of time with these potatoes, too. The basic recipe is pretty simple: boil some potatoes, smash them on a baking sheet, and bake them. But unless I'm Making Dinner, which I almost never do, that's not how I'm gonna do.

A long story about potatoes is imminent, be warned.

So first of all, I was annoyed that potatoes that had boiled for half an hour now needed another half hour in the oven. Did I ever tell you, I used to walk on the treadmill and watch Rachael Ray at the gym, I have walked miles toward that woman, thirty minute meals has been drilled well into my head. Thirty minutes, really, is fancy for me. Most of my jars I can heat up and eat in five.

"I'm never making these again," I said, putting a tray of smashed potatoes in the oven and grumpily mashing the rest of the potatoes into mashed potatoes.

"Holy shit," I said when the potatoes came out of the oven, "these are unbelievably good."

"Fuck. Now I have to boil more potatoes."

This is a three-pound bag of small red potatoes, by the way. I wanted to find out if they would smash nicely out of the fridge or only freshly boiled, I'm happy to report that you can totally keep them in the fridge and smash them at will. Like you could come home from practice, smash and bake a couple potatoes, and eat them with greek yogurt and applesauce like crash hot latkes for a post-workout snack. I had a picture of that, but I didn't like the composition.

Or for their last five minutes in the oven, you could top them with sundried tomatoes and cheddar cheese, and then plate them with sour cream and green onions, crash hot potato skins!

crash hot potato skins

Those lacy pools of melted and crisped cheddar cheese, man, pick every last one of them off the sheet and eat them up.

I only substitute sundried tomatoes for bacon because I am not about to fuss with some bacon. Also, the green onions in this picture? Totally frozen. Lately I've been chopping up the whole bunch of green onions and throwing them in a box in the freezer, along with my parsley and bread crumbs. Though I think the sweetie man stopped eating bread, ahhh it was such a good system. I'm happy that he's not eating bread, though. He was eating A LOT of bread. I guess I'm going to have to buy bread crumbs? Anyway back to the green onions, I thought the picture could use a little color and styled it with a few chopped frozen green onions; but if I'm not going to fuss with frying bacon I'm also not going to fuss with chopping fresh green onions, and frozen green onions are, you know, frozen. Maybe sprinkle them on with the cheese? They do thaw quick, and they do taste good. After the photo shoot I was shoving them under the potatoes to melt them so I could eat them.

Hark, I said, you could also pour gravy over them and melt cheese curds on top for crash hot poutine! But it would look prettier in a pretty casserole, and then you should reshoot the latkes and the skins.

And at about this point, I did not want to eat any more potatoes. It's okay on my eating plan to eat potatoes for a post-workout snack, but I've screwed my starches down to the point that greek yogurt feels better to eat than potatoes. This to me is more of a fancy dinner or party dish, something that I'm only going to make once in a while, and this blog is more about things that I'm going to make over and over? Or in any case, I'm not up for making something over and over that I'm only going to make once in a while.

Sometimes I do post the occasional party dish, so I still might post this. If there's a party, and if I get a pretty casserole.