Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Healthy Texas Cheese Fries

Ok, to start today's post I'd have to say that I'm not really one who enjoys going out to eat.  Actually, I try to avoid it at all costs, but of course, I know that there are going to be those rare occasions that come up where I'm going to have to go.  The main reason I don't like going out to eat is because everything on the menu always looks and sounds delicious and I can't help but get out my phone to look up the calorie count.  My jaw always drops too and because of that, I usually just end up ordering a side salad with a piece of grilled chicken.  I know what you're thinking......that sounds pretty boring.....but I'm not really someone who feels like eating 2 days worth of calories in just one sitting; especially when I know that I could make a similar recipe at home for only half the fat and calories.

One menu item that always catches my eye though, and that I'm usually tempted by, are the cheese fries.  Yummy potato wedges with bacon, melted cheese, scallions, and dipped in ranch dressing; how could one go wrong?  It even has me drooling a little bit just thinking about them as I'm typing.  I never end up ordering a plate though, because you're typically looking at easily over 1,500 calories per dish.  However, I know that Jeff enjoys cheese fries too, so I decided that I'd lighten the dish up and make a homemade, "healthier" version, just for him. 

If I'm completely honest, I have to say that I might have sampled a bite of a fry myself; but that's ok.  If you look at the recipe that follows, you'll notice that they're really not that bad for you, plus I've been doing so well lately.  I've actually lost 4 lbs. in the past 2 weeks just by changing my diet and I've also been able to slowly add back in some exercises.  My workouts are nothing close to where they were, but that's ok, I know it will take some time and healing.  Eating healthy has definitely helped though and I'm excited to share this recipe with you!

Healthy Texas Cheese Fries
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Makes 1-2 servings
1 Extra-large russet or Yukon potato, or 2 medium, washed and skin left on
2 tsp. olive oil
1 tsp. paprika
¼ tsp. chili powder
¼ tsp. onion powder
¼ tsp. cumin
¼ tsp. garlic powder
Dash of ground black pepper and salt (I left the salt out)
1 slice bacon, crumbled (I use turkey bacon)
¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
Diced scallions
1 Jalapeno pepper, seeded and sliced

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and spray a baking sheet with a non-stick cooking spray; set aside
Using a sharp knife cut the potato/potatoes in half lengthwise.  After that, cut each half lengthwise again, into ½ inch slices; then cut those slices in half, to form even smaller length fries.  Or you could just cut the potato however you would like, in order to form your fries.

Now, place the cut potato fries into a large bowl and add in the olive oil.  Toss the potatoes around until well coated and then add in all of the seasonings.  Once again toss the potatoes around until the seasonings are evenly coating the fries.
Next, evenly spread out the fries onto the prepared baking sheet, making sure that they remain in a single layer.  Place them in the oven for 25 minutes, but be sure to flip the fries over halfway through the baking process. (Depending on the thickness of the fries, it could take more or less time to bake, so keep an eye on them; they should be crisp but not burnt)

Remove the fries from the oven and place into an oven safe baking dish, or 2 separate dishes if you don’t feel like sharing (I placed mine in a cast iron skillet).  Top the fries with the cheese, bacon, scallions, and sliced jalapeno peppers.  Then, place the dish in the oven and let cook for about 2-4 minutes, or until the cheese is melted to your liking.  Remove the dish from the oven, serve with a side of ranch, or not, and enjoy!  FYI - Hot sauce also goes great with these fries!

Source: Skinny Taste


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