Two Easy Veggie Sides

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June 24, 2010 by Dana

Some nights when I get home from work, I’m tired.  And hungry.  And cranky.  And lazy.  So I want something for dinner that’s quick.  And tasty.  And healthy.  And doesn’t take much effort.  Or time.  Or too many crazy ingredients. That’s not too much to ask, right?

Well, last night was one of those nights. I didn’t want dinner to be a big production.  So, in the time that I could have had a pizza delivered, I made some easy vegetable side dishes with ingredients that I already had on hand.  Those, paired with some pre-marinated turkey kebobs, left me with a dinner that was easy, healthy, and perfectly satisfying.

This baked sweet potato chip recipe is based on a sweet potato french fry recipe.  It has the same delicious flavor, but takes half the time to cook, since the potato is sliced so thinly.

Baked Sweet Potato Chips

Ingredients

One small sweet potato or yam per person
Non-stick cooking spray
Spices, to taste*

* This is vague for a reason.  I like my chips spicy, so I used paprika, garlic powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, pepper flakes, salt, and black pepper.  You can easily make these sweet potato chips Mexican (taco seasoning), Indian (curry powder, cumin, and cinnamon), sweet (cinnamon and sugar or splenda), or any other flavor combo you can come up with!

Directions

1.  Preheat oven to 400°F.  Lightly coat a large baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.

2.  Thinly slice potatoes into uniformly sized chips, about 1/8 to 1/4 inch.

3.  Add sweet potato, a few seconds of Pam spray, and spices to a large zip lock bag.  Zip closed and shake to coat potatoes with spices.

4.  Arrange chips in a single layer on baking sheet.

5.  Bake chips for 15 minutes.  Flip and bake on the other side for 10 minutes.  Switch oven to broil and bake for two additional minutes, to crisp chips.  Make sure to watch the  chips so they do not burn.

These chips are a definite crowd pleaser.  I mean, who in their right mind doesn’t like potato chips??  This baked version doesn’t even taste healthy and can be adjusted to suit all palates.

Also sure to be a hit at your dinner table is this tangy cauliflower recipe:

Dilly Cauliflower

Ingredients

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
1 teaspoons spicy mustard
2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 Tablespoons fresh dill, or 2 teaspoons dried dill
2 Tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste

If available, fresh dill is definitely the way to go in this dish.  If you are throwing this together with dried spices you already have on hand, like I did, let the dressing mixture sit for a few minutes before tossing with the cauliflower.  This will allow the dill to soak up some of the moisture from the liquid and soften.

Directions

1.  Steam or boil cauliflower until tender.

2.  In a small mixing bowl, combine mustard, vinegar, garlic, dill, olive oil, salt and pepper.  Whisk well.

3. Place cauliflower in a serving bowl and toss with dressing.

This veggie side is healthy, tasty, and so easy…. the trifecta!  Even Jake, who “doesn’t like” cauliflower, enjoyed his serving of the vegetable last night.

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