*I first came across the idea of tossing potatoes in turmeric at a cooking class and developed this healthy baked "French Fries" recipe because they were so delicious. Turmeric is one of the latest "superfoods" that is said to have powerful antioxidant and antinflammatory properties. It's an easy spice to use as it goes so well with savoury (and sometimes sweet) dishes. These French Fries are so good we haven't made them any other way since. *
Mr NQN have this little routine. Once a day usually towards the end of the night I turn to him and say, "Do you think I'm crazy?"
And he will answer, "Absolutely, 100%". He may sometimes add, "You've managed to hide the crazy today." But my friends and loved ones know that it's a constant battle hiding the crazy. One night he turned to me and said that he thought I was getting nuttier by the day. Granted I had just carried on a loud conversation pretending to be a monkey called Cappuccino. "My god, the window is open...anyone can hear you," he moaned.
"But I has talents! Voice talents! I could be discovered and be the next Spongebob!" I exclaimed before adding, "I'm not going to share my Spongebob money with you, you talent doubter!".
But I take his point, hiding crazy is hard especially if you're trying to be professional most of the time.
I seem to have two sides when it comes to my diet too. One day I will eat very well, salads and healthy foods and then I will eat a bacon covered donut and cake. I call it trying to balance things and although I'm not a health food blogger (obviously, I hear you snickering ;)), I will occasionally dip my toe into the pool.
I was doing a cooking class and the chef suggested that we spice some potato wedges with turmeric. He served some up and they were gloriously golden. I put them on the to make list straight away. I didn't want to deep fry them because I don't like deep frying but I thought I'd try and create a healthy "French fry" recipe with the health benefits of turmeric. The curcumin in turmeric is said to be good for warding off dementia, Alzheimers disease and reduces risk of cancer. It also colours everything bright gold (and that means everything that it touches) and adds a great flavour and spice to food.
I cannot tell you how much we enjoyed these French fries. The day after my first batch, I made another and then another until I ran out of potatoes. These have a wonderful crispness to them but also a mood enhancing golden shade. I don't know that I could even resist making baked French fries without the turmeric now, especially since I know that they might help me hide the crazy!
So tell me Dear Reader, do people call you mad or crazy? Do you try and hide it? And do you do voices? Do you cook with turmeric much or take notice of superfoods?
Healthy Baked Turmeric and Sesame French Fries
An Original Recipe by Lorraine Elliott/Not Quite Nigella
Preparation time: 5 minutes plus 30 minutes soaking
Cooking time: 30 minutes
- 2 large, long potatoes (Coliban, Dutch Cream, Desiree, ideally organic*)
- 1-2 tablespoons oil (I used a chilli olive oil)
- 1 tablespoon toasted white and black sesame seeds (optional)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder (not bicarb soda)
- 2 teaspoons turmeric powder
- Salt for seasoning
*I've suggested organic potatoes only because are one of the top vegetables with the highest pesticide residues so if you are going to buy organic but it is cost prohibitive to buy everything organic, try focusing on vegetables like celery, potatoes and capsicum (peppers), zucchini and lettuce.
Step 1 - Slice potatoes into long batons (you can peel them but I usually leave skin on for fibre and vitamins, just wash them very well). Soak them in a bowl of cold water for about 30 minutes to get rid of the starch, rinsing once or twice. Drain in colander.
Step 2 - Preheat oven to 200C/400F and line a large baking tray with parchment. Place the baking and turmeric powders in a ziplock bag and toss in the potatoes. Turmeric really stains hands and chopping boards and bowls so I do this in a zip lock to avoid staining. Empty onto the tray and drizzle with oil and bake for 25 minutes or until cooked through and crispy. Toss in the sesame seeds and serve.