Happy 2017, everyone!
I know I'm a couple weeks late in celebrating, but considering my mom and I have been trying to celebrate the new year for just as long (the weather keeps getting in the way), I'm doing okay over here. :)
I wanted to start off 2017 with some new recipes before going back to getting older material from the WordPress blog on here. There's still a lot to resurrect, but it's been far too long since I've posted anything new that wasn't sponsored. Between that and having a ton of new (to the blog) dishes that I've wanted to share for quite some time, the first few posts of the year will be devoted to new recipes.
You'll notice I slowed down in posting over the past couple of months. That was partly because of the crazy holiday season and weather-induced flare ups, but also because I ended up picking up a second, super part-time gig to help make ends meet. I'm doing the onsite property contact thing at my apartment building, which involves a lot of cleaning (I have even more respect for the janitorial profession at this point), and making sure everything's safe, which makes great use of my former security guard skills. Only drawback is how few spoons I'm left with at the end of the day between that and the day job and the crazy long commute, so I've been trying to regain that balance that I'm so constantly seeking.
Which is another reason why I wanted to start off my PGEW year with some new material. One of my coworkers and I were chatting about our mutual need for getting back to our passions in the new year, as we're both creatives and get each other in that respect. We were discussing how being in survival mode had sucked out the energy for focusing on creative projects, and how... wrong that feels. Survival mode cannot be put on the back burner (because then you don't survive), but to completely deny the creative part of yourself is suffocating. And so, we pledged to honor that part of ourselves this year, even if it's only in some small, incremental way, no matter how great the need for survival mode.
This recipe is my start to that.
If you've been following newer restaurants and gastropub trends, you've probably noticed that loaded fries are having their moment now. From takes on the In N Out (not so) secret menu favorite Animal Style Fries, to big buffalo chicken style productions, the more elaborate the final dish of fries, the better. Loaded fries aren't quite "small plates", but they're not a full entree, making them a perfect sized meal.
It seems a shame that restaurants should be the only place to enjoy such a plate full of delight, especially since a lot of loaded fries will cost about $10 per plate. So, I began making my own on nights I was too tired to actually cook-cook. I started off just topping sweet potato fries with an over easy egg (yes, I'm still deep into my sweet potato phase), but slowly evolved to adding more toppings: chopped tomatoes, onions, cheese, shredded chicken... the possibilities are, of course, endless. It's like a plate of nachos, only with spears of spuds as the vehicle to transport all those toppings into one's mouth.
This is probably my most basic take on loaded fries at the moment (yes, there will be more of these in the future, lol), but that's probably why I revisit this recipe the most. There are enough toppings to make it interesting, but not so many that the dish becomes more work than it's worth. I kept things relatively simple by adding only chopped scallions, tomatoes, a little bit of bacon and a spicy drizzle of Sriracha aioli (or Sriracha mayo), and topped everything off with a perfectly fried egg (or two). I call them BFD (Breakfast for Dinner) Fries because they do make a great BFD - and because they are a big friggin' deal - but you can have these any time.
As with all my recipes, the way I've put this together isn't written in stone, so have fun mixing up your toppings. I do recommend giving them a try as written, but if you're not into bacon or if you have some other garnishes you'd like to add (like some cheese, for example), feel free to do so.
This is probably the least healthy recipe I'll post for the next few weeks, as I have my winter coat to shed and recently started up my Farm Fresh to You box again (if you want $15 off your first box, you can use my code: KIMB9439). So, if you're worried that I'll ruin any New Year's fitness resolutions you're working on, don't fret... I won't torture you with the naughty stuff too much. ;) But there is more "fun" food on the horizon, as well as the return of new tip posts and other good stuff to come over the next few weeks. I can't promise a deluge of new posts all at once, but I'll definitely be adding new content along with more batch posts of older recipes.
But there's no need to deal with all that at the moment... right now it's time for a recipe! Let's check it out.
Spicy BFD Fries (makes 2 servings; total cost per serving: $4.75)Not a sweet potato fan? Just swap them out for regular spuds and you'll be just fine. Want to get the fancy piped aioli look but don't have the cool squeeze bottle? No worries! Put the prepared aioli into a sandwich bag, make sure all the air has been squeezed out and secure at the top. Cut a tiny piece off one of the bottom corners of the bag, and presto! You have a makeshift piping bag to get that cool drizzle effect.
For the Sriracha Aioli
2 T mayonnaise
1 T Sriracha sauce
For the fries
16 oz frozen sweet potato fries (or you can use my sweet potato fries recipe featured here)
2-3 bacon strips
1 medium tomato, diced
2-3 scallions, finely chopped
1-2 large eggs
1/2 T olive oil
Generous drizzle of Sriracha aioli
1. Prepare the aioli by mixing the Sriracha and mayonnaise together in a small bowl until well combined. Put into a small squeeze bottle or the makeshift piping bag I described in the headnotes, and set aside.
2. Bake the sweet potato fries according to package instructions (or the ones in my recipe if you're using that). In the meantime, cook the bacon to desired crispness in a small pan. Drain off the fat, blot with paper towels to take off the excess grease, then finely chop. Set aside.
3. In a separate skillet, heat the olive oil. Crack the eggs into the skillet and cook to desired doneness (I like mine just a shade more done than over easy, but not completely over medium. I'm strange). Set aside.
4. By this time, your fries should be fully cooked and ready to be topped. Place them in a bowl or on a serving dish, then give them a generous drizzle of the Sriracha aioli. Add the chopped tomatoes and onions, followed by the chopped bacon. Slide the egg(s) on top, add a little more sauce (or straight Sriracha if you really like things spicy), and enjoy!