I cannot believe it is already March. Not just because it means that Spring is right around the corner – which is even more shocking considering we didn’t even have a true Winter here in Memphis. It’s amazing because today marks 5 months of marriage!
t’s still hard to fathom that at this time last year, I had just found a dress, was still hunting for bridesmaids dresses, working out details of my bachelorette party, picking menus for the rehearsal dinner and reception – well, just stressing out to the max!
This week has been so much fun because I’ve been on the other side of it! Two of my best friends are getting married this year – and their bachelorette parties are coming up. Not a huge deal for most – but a majority of my friends are out-of-town, so these gatherings are not just something to look forward to – they are EPIC weekends. Needless to say, I’ve been a little distracted!
Distracted enough to forget about you? Absolutely not! I realized I have been posted a lot of main course items and it was probably about time to throw in a delicious side dish. Because let’s face it – that chicken/turkey/shrimp/beef isn’t going to fill you up!
Potatoes are probably my favorite side dish. I love a good baked potato – and that’s even good enough for my dinner sometimes! But remember when I started weight watchers, I said I didn’t want to deprive myself of anything I was craving? Well, I crave french fries. Enter – oven baked french fries. Except I take them up a notch with a little Ranch seasoning. Tantalizing to your tastebuds…which is good. Right?
Ranch Flavored Oven-Baked Fries (serves 2)
1 medium russet potato
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 Tbsp. dry Ranch mix
Olive oil spray (I use a Misto – you can use the pre-packaged varieties too – or just drizzle)
Preheat oven to 400.
Begin by scrubbing your potato. Then cut it in half. Then stand up each half and make two downward cuts, diving your potato into 3 pieces. Cut each piece into about 1/4 inch rectangles, giving you that “fry” shape. Repeat with other half.
Soak the raw fries in water. This releases some of the starch so the potatoes don’t steam (aka “sing”) when they are baking. This results in a much more french fry like texture – versus all of the moisture escaping and the fries being dry – or them just cooking very unevenly.
After at least 30 minutes of soaking, pat dry with paper towels and return to bowl. Drizzle a very light amount (maybe 1/4 tsp.) or spray with olive oil and toss to coat.
Now, pour about 1 Tbsp. of your ranch mixture onto the fries, tossing again to distribute the seasoning evenly.
Pour fries out onto a nonstick or lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake 15-20 minutes on lower rack, and flip. Dust remaining 1/2 Tbsp. ranch mix on any fries that may need it (some of it slides off with the oil and bakes onto the pan). Return to oven for another 15-20 minutes.
Remove when fries are cooked through and deliciously crispy.
I served mine with come chicken strips (a recipe which I WILL hand over to you soon, don’t you worry) and a cheesy spinach I threw together.
See? No need to go to your local fast food establishment to load up on greasy fries – you have some delicious healthy ones right here!
On a side note – if you try any of the recipes I’ve been posting, please leave a comment and let me know how they turn out! I’d love to hear some feedback – including anything you might like to see me try to “lighten up”!