Sunday, March 14, 2010

Peruvian Inspired Baked Vegetable "Fries"

This recipe is inspired by our favorite appetizer at a local Latin Restaurant, Aji.  While both ingredients and preparation are quite different than the Peruvian Papas a la Huancaina, it is that dish that prompted me to find a new way to use up some root vegetables in the fridge.  This makes a lovely contribution to a tapas party or a nice centerpiece for an evening meal, perhaps accompanied by a small salad.

For an even faster, vegan alternative, serve with a balsamic vinaigrette or vegan "goddess" dressing.

Serves 4 as appetizer, 2 as entree.

1 large potato
2 medium sweet potatoes
1 zucchini
olive oil spray
salt and pepper
4 Tbsp goat cheese, ricotta, or queso fresco
1/2 cup milk
1/4 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (or adjust to taste)
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp dried basil
handful of crackers
salt and pepper
8 black olives, quartered
2 hard boiled eggs, quartered
1 cup baby spinach, optional

Preheat oven to 400.  Spray baking sheet with olive oil.  Cut the potato and sweet potatoes into wedges about 1/2" thick on the bottom, and arrange on tray.  Spray tops with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Bake for about 30 minutes.

In the meantime, cut zucchini into similarly sized wedges.  Add to baking sheet, spray with olive oil, and bake everything for another 15 minutes, or until tender.

In the meantime, put all ingredients for sauce except for cracker in a food processor or blender, and blend until smooth.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Add crackers one at a time until thickened to desired consistency (should still be liquid).

If desired, spread baby spinach on plate.  Arrange vegetable wedges on plate.  Drizzle sauce over top, and garnish with the black olives and hard boiled eggs.

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