Thursday, April 11, 2013

Slimming Down

As the weather begins to warm up here in the Jerz, I have been feeling the need to do some serious slimming down. Not like, of my waist line or any of that crap, (cause I could kind of give two rats about bikini season and all as I don't wear them anymore) but of the menu planning, grocery shopping variety. I took a look around my kitchen the other day and realized I had nothing to eat. Now my pantry and fridge are both chock full of food, but not the kind I want to eat in 65 degree sunshine. It's time to slim down the kitchen, clean out the stew meats and root veggies, and lighten things up.

I started where most inspiration starts these days: my overflowing Pinterest boards. I have been guest pinning this month for Circle of Moms and POPSUGAR, so I have been focusing on family friendly meal ideas. Of course, I pin them like crazy and then never cook them. But I kept peeking back at this recipe for Zucchini Chips from Table for Two and had to make them. I also just bought a mandoline, so it was perfect.

Jude gobbled them up and would probably have eaten them all had I not hidden a few out of sight for myself.   They are also a touch time consuming, so I tried to do a bit of portion control. With my share, I threw together this Grilled Salmon Salad with Asparagus and my favorite Green Goddess Dressing. It's lovely with leftovers, but I would definitely make this as a weeknight meal, too. Try this Asian Salmon recipe if you want to try something new, or just grill it simply with salt, pepper, and olive oil. The dressing is really flavorful!

Oven Baked Zucchini Chips
courtesy of Table for Two

2 medium zucchinis
Two Tbls. olive oil
*You'll also need a mandoline and baking sheets lined with parchment or Silpat mats.

Preheat oven to 225 degrees. Slice zucchini on the mandoline with the thinnest setting (I did mine of the bias so they'd be a bit bigger). Lay each slice on paper towels and blot dry. Transfer to prepared baking sheets, taking care not to overlap slices. Brush with a bit of oil using a pastry brush, and sprinkle lightly with salt. Bake until just browned and crisp, about 1.5 - 2 hours.

*Tip: If your slices are super thin like mine were, a few of them may want to stick to the Silpat. A handy trick (one I picked up from paper crafting) is to bend the Silpat up and peel it from the chip, instead of bending the chip to peel it from the Silpat. Get it? You can store your chips in an air tight container for up to three days, but they won't last that long!

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