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Kitchen Experiments

Trying new recipes is my biggest passion when it comes to cooking. I have certain go to meals that my family enjoys which makes me very happy. However, I like to change it up and challenge myself. My experiments in the kitchen may not always work out but that is how I learn. I guess it’s my inner psychology major coming out.👩‍🔬 This week, I apparently had snacks on the brain and decided to try three new recipes. 

Fried B & B pickles 

I found a recipe via Pinterest from the Food Network: Almost Fried Pickles. I followed their method but went with sweet pickles, omitted Italian seasoning and subbed smoked paprika for the cayenne pepper. The process was fun and easy. They tasted good by themselves but really popped with a fresh remoulade sauce that I found at a local market. The tangy sauce contrasted very well with the sweet pickles. 

Outcome📝: I felt the coating could have been a little thicker so will experiment with other methods for a little more crisp. Otherwise, these were a solid first attempt.👍

Black and baked chips

I’m a huge fan of potato chips. I know they’re just empty calories but they’re so darn delicious! They may not truly satisfy your appetite but they sure do wonders for your taste buds.😋 I had a few small potatoes that I needed to use up and thought, why not? I’ve made oven baked sweet potato chips before but have struggled a bit with consistency, even after using a mandolin. For instance, the thinner ones tend to burn easily while the thicker ones don’t want to crisp up. 

I accidentally made hand cut potato chips in Argentina. I noticed that the thinner cuts would crisp up very well in my weekly potato bake. Thus, I decided to give the mandolin one more shot. First, I washed, peeled and sliced the potatoes. This turned out to be much easier than working with sweet potatoes.😓 The consistency was very even so we’re off to a good start! Afterwards, I simply tossed them in a large bowl with enough olive oil to coat, a few dashes of salt and pepper and a couple good shakes of blackened seasoning. Then another dash of salt and pepper. 

I sprayed two sheet pans with nonstick cooking spray and strategically placed the chips so that none were touching. I baked them on 400 degrees for 15 minutes and checked on them. They wouldn’t lift with a spatula so I put them back in for an additional five minutes. A few were crisp so I did a taste test. Yummy!🤤 I removed the ones that were ready and put the rest back in for another five. Most were perfect but a few got a little too brown. 

Outcome📝: These were great and tasted just like potato chips in terms of both texture and flavor. You have to keep an eye on them and remove a few here and there before the others. So a little more work is involved but it makes you slow down and savor every crunch because you nurtured each one to it’s best self. Also, they’re healthier than store bought so less guilt involved. These will be a repeat to replicate as well as experiment with different seasonings. 

Rice cheddar cookies 

My mother in law requested me to make cheese crispies from an old recipe card she found. She fondly remembered eating them as a child. I studied the ingredients and determined the flavor profile to be similar to my grandma’s cheese straws that I grew up eating. She made them with a cookie press and they were a family favorite. I’ve always aspired to make them and felt that maybe these cheese crispies would be a good stepping stone. I gathered the ingredients, did my thing, rolled them into balls and baked them according to the recipe. 

Outcome📝: Meh. They were a little bland and soft. They didn’t crisp up and had the texture of a cookie vs. a crispy. I added more seasoning to the second batch but still just eh….We will eat them mind you but these will need some more tinkering for sure!

Findings📊: These food experiments were fun to do. Each recipe came with their own personality and challenges. The pickles were inspired by a pin, the chips by a happy accident and the crispies by nostalgia. I didn’t use a recipe for my chips and those turned out to be the best. I learned that maybe I need to trust myself more in the kitchen and go my own way. That’s what I love about cooking. Even if you’re dish isn’t perfect you continue to evolve and improve. One misstep may lead to a more exciting road. You just gotta stay open and keep on trucking! 🚛💜🍽

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Mood Ring Kitchen

I’m a self teaching home cook and aspiring foodie entrepreneur. I enjoy coming up with creative ways to prepare flavorful food such as snacks, desserts and everything in between. Cooking is a way for me to challenge myself and satisfy curiosities about different ingredients.

The hope is to produce something thoughtful, memorable or every once in a while maybe even wonderful. I enjoy following my “gut” and exploring new recipes that can be comforting, exciting and nourishing. Above all else, I enjoy exploring the emotions surrounding food and writing about those experiences. 😝👩‍🍳👩‍💻

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