Thursday, February 25, 2016

Food for Thought : Potatoes

Do you love potatoes ? Potatoes are definitely America's favorite vegetable . Each year we consume  about  110 pounds  of potatoes  per person . Potatoes are packed  with healthful carbohydrates , vitamins , minerals and fiber . A medium size potato  with the skin gives you nearly 4 grams of fiber .Potatoes are low in fat  an excellent source of calcium . Enjoy  your potatoes  with the following tips  :

When purchasing potatoes  , look for ones  that are fairly clean  and smooth .

Store them in a cool  , dark place  with high humidity , but not the refrigerator . Do not store your potatoes and onions  together . Onions produce gas  that speeds up the decay of potatoes .

Before baking potatoes  , make sure you pierce the skin with a fork  a few times . This allows  steam to escape during  cooking .

Use chicken broth  and milk instead of cream and butter  for mashed potatoes . Chop or slice potatoes  and mix with olive oil , onions  and spices , such as  garlic  for a great side dish .

                                                                                          Peanut Butter Potato Chip Cookies :
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F., rack in the middle position.

The following recipe can be doubled if you wish. Do not, however, double the baking soda. Use one and a half teaspoons.

1       cup softened butter (2 sticks, 1⁄2 pound, 8 ounces)
2       cups white (granulated) sugar
3       tablespoons molasses
2       teaspoons vanilla
1       teaspoon baking soda
2       beaten eggs (just whip them up in a glass with a fork)
2       cups crushed salted potato chips (measure AFTER crushing) (I used regular thin unflavored Lay’s potato chips)
2-1⁄2     cups all-purpose flour (pack it down in the cup when you measure it)
1-1⁄2     cups peanut butter chips (I used Reese’s, a 10-ounce by weight bag. I know that’s close to 2 cups, but I like lots of peanut butter chips in these cookies)

TIP : The butter in this recipe should be at room temperature unless you have an un-insulated kitchen and it’s winter in Minnesota. In that case, you’d better soften it a little.

TIP : 5 to 6 cups of whole potato chips will crush down into about 2 cups. Crush them by hand in a plastic bag, not with a food processor. They should be the size of coarse gravel when they’re crushed.

Mix the softened butter with the white sugar and the mo lasses. Beat them until the mixture is light and fluffy, and the molasses is completely mixed in.

Add the vanilla and baking soda. Mix them in thoroughly.

Break the eggs into a glass and whip them up with a fork. Add them to your bowl and mix until they’re thoroughly incorporated.

Put your potato chips in a zip lock plastic bag. Seal it carefully (you don’t want crumbs all over your counter) and place the bag on a flat surface. Get out your rolling pin and roll it over the bag, crushing the potato chips inside. Do this until the pieces resemble coarse gravel. (If you crush them too much, you won’t have any crunch—crunch is good in these cookies.)

Measure out 2 cups of crushed potato chips and mix them into the dough in your bowl.

Add one cup of flour and mix it in.

Then add the second cup of flour and mix thoroughly.

Add the final half cup of flour and mix that in.

Measure out a cup and a half of peanut butter chips and add them to your cookie dough. If you’re using an electric mixer, mix them in at the slowest speed. You can also take the bowl out of the mixer and stir in the chips by hand.

Let the dough sit on the counter while you prepare your cookie sheets.

Spray your cookie sheets with Pam or another nonstick cooking spray, or line them with parchment paper, leaving little “ears” at the top and bottom. That way, when your cookies are baked, you can pull the paper, baked cookies and all, over onto a wire rack to cool.

Drop the dough by rounded teaspoons onto your cookie sheets, 12 cookies on each standard-sized sheet.

TIP : I used a 2-teaspoon cookie scoop at The Cookie Jar. It’s faster than doing it with a spoon.

Bake your Peanut Butter Potato Chip Cookies at 350 degrees F. for 10 to 12 minutes or until nicely browned. (take about  11 minutes.)

Let the cookies cool for 2 minutes on the cookie sheet and then remove them with a metal spatula. Transfer them to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Yield: Approximately 5 dozen wonderfully chewy, salty and soft cookies that are sure to please everyone who tastes them.

TIP : DO NOT bake these for anyone with a peanut allergy!

TIP : These cookies travel well. If you want to send them to a friend, just stack them, roll them up like coins in foil, and cushion the cookie rolls between layers of Styrofoam peanuts, or bubble wrap.

A proud grand-poppa                 G .

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Come on in , set awhile and have a cup of tea and cookies , as always you are welcome .