Challenge me: What type of cuisine or food should I try next?
This is an A to Z challenge review…but first—food:
It was a weekday, and my friend Margaret and I were lamenting this statistical majority after work by drinking sangria, eating patatas bravas at our local Spanish tapas bar called Andaluz, and puzzling out the ingredients in the dish’s spice mix.
Side note: If you go to your friend and say, “Ugh! I’m having such a bad Tuesday! Let’s go to the tapas bar and get a drink.” And they agree (albeit hesitantly), only to give a heavy sigh of relief upon arrival, exclaiming, “Oh thank god...tapas!!! I thought you said topless!” Friendship Law dictates you buy said friend a glass of sangria.
I’ve since eaten at several Spanish tapas bars after moving to CA, and have had enough versions of this dish that I can venture to say our Oregonian España might not be super authentic… but… this dish no less tasty.
Patatas Bravas (Spice Mix)
Special Ingredients: smoked paprika
- 5 tsp Smoked Paprika
- 2 tsp Cumin powder
- 1 tsp Garlic powder
- 1 tsp Onion powder
- 1 tso ground Black Pepper
- 1 tsp Salt (and more to taste)
Note: Use a mortar and pestle to crush the salt into a fine powder, this will help it blend with the other spices better.
- 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper
Mix and add toss on lightly-oiled roasted potato wedges. Or, on a particularly lazy day, add all the spice to frozen tater tots by shaking violently in a ziploc bag until well coated, cook per instructions. OR…make your own tator tots.
Serve with roasted garlic aioli, or…ranch, because you’re from Oregon and ranch is the ketchup of the West.
A to Z Challenge Review
Image: “Cooking” by Stavos
Last year, I did the A to Z challenge for my writing/travel blog Notions in Motion (which I’ve left to collect dust since) and I knew around “J” that Thought on a Roll would be next. I would eat my posts, unlike my post how to go backpacking for the first time which just left me hungry for food and a hike. I didn’t struggle as much as I thought I would, and I often just cooked standard meals that I eat anyways.
Top 5 Recipes of A to Z 2015
Next year, I’m almost positive I will challenge Thought on a Roll again. I’m debating doing one of three themes: “Food Regions,” “Ingredients” or “Spices” as a theme.
- Food Regions
This would allow me to expand into new cuisines, something I thoroughly enjoy doing.
- Food Ingredients
This would allow me to make cured meats, cheeses, sausages, stocks, sauces, pastas, which would allow me to take advantage of all the damn gadgets I own and never use.
I would get to (1) buy more spices, and (2) discuss how confronting “whole jeera” on a curry recipe simply means you need to get your “cumin seeds.”
I’m leaning towards Spices, because our planet’s globalization should be tasty, and you might not realize what other parts of the world you already have in your cupboard. In the mean time, I’m going to cook more, post still, and work on my food photography.
A to Z recipe list
Individual Apple Pies
Ethiopian Beef Stew (Key Wat)
Chicken Coconut Curry
Ethiopian Chicken Stew (Doro Wat)
Shrimp Etouffee and Shrimp Stock
Five-Onion Goat Curry
Indian and Ethiopian Ghee
Honey Peanut Butter Squares
Irish Soda Bread
Pulled Jackfruit BBQ
Eggplant Fry (Kathirakai Poriyal)
South African Melktert (Milk Tart)
Chettinad Nandu Kolambu (Crab Curry)
Onion Chutney (Vengayam Chutney)
Ridge Gourd Fry (Peerkangai Poriyal)
Chicken Quinoa Salad in Basil-Lemon Dressing
Garlic Shrimp Fried Rice
Upma (Savory Semolina Breakfast)
Vintage Vegan Cupcakes
Whipped Coconut Frosting
Xocholata (3-Ingredient Chocolate Bars)
Ethiopian Collard Greens (Ye’absha Gomen)