Cajun oven fries!

crispy Cajun oven fries

I am about to write a post that came about from a trip to Five Guys and Subway. Never in envisioning my ‘healthy cooking blog’ did I think something like this would come up. But inspiration finds you in unexpected places, I suppose.

So here we were, my boyfriend and I waiting out the thunderstorm in a (particularly awesome) tavern before a great night of baseball: the Nationals vs. Orioles at the Nats stadium in DC. I had the thought of maybe grabbing a sandwich at Subway across the street rather than paying $12 for a greasy something-or-other in the stadium. Forrest was in, although he decided to go all in at the Five Guys next door. I admitted to him that I did love their fries—way back when I ate hamburgers—so he promised to share with me all the little fries I desired, as they stuff an entire brown bag full of them. What a treat!

The fries – their cajun seasoned ones which I had never tried – were greasy but delicious, with a much more ‘homemade’ taste than any other fast food fries I’ve had. And the cajun seasoning was just meant to be with them. I knew I’d be cooking up a healthier version as soon as I got home.

And that was that. Inspiration for my next recipe came to me from a greasy burger joint outside a ballpark. Although I love cooking and eating foods that are inherently healthy (kale salads, lentil stew, etc..) there is a great satisfaction that comes from ‘healthifying’ something that’s typically not so great for you. So here are some oven baked fries, smothered in Cajun goodness, thick and tender and crispy enough to rival any fast food joint.

Nats v Orioles, photo by Forrest

crispy Cajun oven fries

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A n’awlins weekend, in food & photos

It’s no surprise that my favorite part about travel is food. Scoping out the authentic eats and local markets in a city brings me purpose and delight, and I enjoy learning about a culture through its cooking and the tastes, aromas, eating and drinking that goes with it. I first realized this when studying abroad on Semester At Sea and friends started pointing out how I took photos of every meal and how I got angry with them for not wanting to try every local dish.. :D

I have no problem embracing the local cuisine with full force, even if it means abandoning my healthy eating habits for the time being… as was the case with po’boys and beignets and never-ending daiquiris on the streets of New Orleans.

Two fridays ago my sisters and I met up for a somewhat-spontaneous weekend trip to New Orleans, as none of us had ever been and they both have friends who live there. Basically I just decided to tag along as annoying little sisters tend to do. It was both a chaotic—due to the start of Mardi Gras—and relaxing weekend filled with eating, drinking, walking, loud and colorful festivities, cooking, nibbling on free praline samples, and lots of indecisive moments the three of us have together.

So I’ll refrain from typing the tedious details (which I tend to over-do when writing about my travels), and let your eyes feast on the colors and tastes of our weekend in Nola.

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