Monday, January 31, 2011

It's Snack Time!

Happy Monday, all! It has been a few days, and we wanted to share with you some of our recent pantry snacks that helped to get us through this past wintery week. You know we all reach for the cupboard and some late night munchies this time of year…. When it’s just too cold to deal with the elements, food is our go-to comfort spot. Check out these recipes for a jazzed-up weekly meal, side dish, or simply a comforting goodie to give your taste buds an uplifting vibe! What else do you like to snack on for a little weekday comfort??

Roasted Lotus Seeds

A very healthy substitute to your usual go-to snacks of potato chips or popcorn, this delicious roasted snack hits the spot! Crunchy, crispy and a slightly smoky taste…. That just happens to go very well with beer ;)! You simply roast the seeds in a wok or frying pan with one tbsp of oil (any kind you have on hand will do) and add salt and pepper to taste. Roast until they are crisp then snack away! Try it, you won't regret it!!

Oven Baked Sweet Potato Wedges

These sweet morsels of goodness are a perfect side dish to almost any meal, especially this time of year. Salty, sweet, and crunchy….. and hello, it’s a potato! Cannot go wrong. Check ‘em out! (The secret magical ingredient here, that you all have on hand but NEVER use… pumpkin pie spice!!!)

4 medium sized sweet potatoes, diced into cubes
1 tsp sugar
Olive oil
Salt & pepper
Pumpkin pie spice

Rinse off the sweet potatoes and pat dry. Dice then evenly into cube sized bites. Arrange evenly on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil (not too much, they’ll get all soggy on you in the oven!). Sprinkle with salt, pepper, tsp of sugar, and as much or little pumpkin pie spice as you want. Toss around with your hands to make sure they are all coated even with ingredients, and bake at 375 for roughly 20-30 minutes or until they reach desired crispiness!! We like our extra crispy, and you will notice they get to be a dark shade of brown when done. For a killer dipping sauce? Spice up some low fat mayo with garlic salt and a few dashes of the pumpkin pie spice. The perfect salty combo to go with your sweet side dish! 

Puff Pastry Pinwheels

As we scoured our pantry and freezer for snacks, we came across an unused sheet of puff pastry dough from a previous week’s meal. Along with some diced up veggies we had to put to use before they went sour on us, we decided to roll it all up and make a snack that not only pleased our tummies, but our eyes as well! Check out this easy technique to make a fun snack any day of the week! Fill these pinwheels with any ingredients you may have on hand! They can be enjoyed for a full week and stored in the fridge in an air tight container!

1 sheet puff pastry dough, defrosted
½ onion, chopped
½ green pepper, chopped
1 tofurkey sausage link, chopped
4-5 sun dried tomatoes, chopped
Salt & pepper to taste

Roll out the puff pastry dough onto a flat & floured surface so it doesn’t stick to your table and make a mess. Meanwhile, sauté whatever veggies & meats you have on hand. We used a leftover onion, green pepper, and tofurkey sausage link. Sun dried tomatoes added for good measure & salty kick! Once the filling is prepared, arrange horizontally across the dough in a thin, 1 ½ inch margin. Make sure to arrange 1-2 inches from the bottom side. 

Once the ingredients are placed, roll the dough from the bottom, up.  Once rolled, slice into ½ inch pieces, and place onto a baking sheet with one exposed side up. Sprinkle with cheese, if desired, and bake at 400*F for 15 minutes, or until the pastry is brown around the edges. 


  1. Hi there,

    I like the roasted lotus seeds idea as a snack. Never thought about it. Where can I find those seeds?

  2. The sweet potato wedges sound delushious. However, here in the old country, we use pumpkins as a vegetable base, and a South Indian would assume that pumpkin pie has something to do with the circumference of said gourd. Soooo, what are the ingredients of PP Spice? Can it be freshly assembled? Is there a substitute?

  3. Hey Sirocco----- Pumpkin Pie spice simply refers to the typical spices that go into a, you guessed it, pumpkin pie! Many spice companies (McCormick's for one) package them all in one container to make it easier on the consumer, especially around the holidays. After the holidays are over, pumpkin pie spice is rarely used. All it consists of is: ground ginger, nutmeg, allspice, and cinnamon! If you don't have PP spice, simply combine as much or little of those four ingredients you want. It goes great with the sweet potatoes! Hope that helps!

  4. IKME ---- Here are some places you can get the lotus seeds....
    OR these various Indian Food Stores in NYC:

    Lotus Seeds are more commonly called Phool Makhana. You can actually just google Phool Makhana to order it online (One site that may be helpful is OR most Indian grocery stores in NYC will carry these, here's a list of some stores you can try:
    Anita Food Center New York
    21 Sherman Ave New York (NY) Phone: (212) 567 8200
    India Bazaar New York
    69 1st Ave New York (NY) Phone: (212) 420 5906
    Janata Spice Store New York
    85 1st Ave Fl 1 New York (NY) Phone: (212) 529 1815
    Kalustyan Brothers New York
    123 Lexington Ave New York (NY) Phone: (212) 685 3451
    Punjabi Grocery & Deli New York
    114 E 1st St New York (NY) Phone: (212) 533 9048
    Spice Corner New York
    135 Lexington Ave New York (NY) Phone: (212) 689 5182
    Spice of India New York
    330 East 6th Street New York (NY) Phone: (212) 260 7930
    Tajmahal Groceries New York
    2618 Broadway New York (NY) Phone: (212) 749 6687

  5. Hi! Just found your blog. Interestingly enough, Cajuns also eat the lotus seeds. They're called "Graines a volers" or "Cajun Peanuts". My dad's friends harvest them right out of the bayous.