Try as I might, I’ve struggled to really like sweet potatoes.
Growing up, sweet potatoes just weren’t a side dish that donned our plates at dinner. I guess I never acquired a taste for them.
I understand – and appreciate – the nutrient value. I applaud the versatility they offer.
But I continued in my struggle to get hooked.
There’s a funky little restaurant here in town that serves sweet potato fries with the most amazing garlic basil aioli.
Like, spoil your appetite for lunch (or dinner) amazing garlic basil aioli.
And suddenly, I’m hooked.
As I figured, replicating this ramekin of deliciousness required few ingredients and just moments of time…and is a crazy yummy way to jazz up a pile of sweet potato fries alongside a juicy burger, hot off the grill.
Pro Tip: slather leftovers on a grilled chicken sandwich. You won’t be disappointed.
For this recipe I used already prepared mayo, but if you feel inspired to home-make the mayo part of this recipe, by all means, you do you!
Give it a try and let me know what you think!
Garlic Basil Aioli
Three simple ingredients come together to create the yummiest sweet potato fry dipping sauce AND grilled chicken sandwich condiment.
I’ve been really antsy to get the garden planted. But….
Technically I’m not too far behind because the rule of thumb is Mother’s Day for planting. The idea is that the danger of plant killing frost will be behind us at that point. I love the theory, and I’ve also had to re-plant on more than one occasion due to plant killing frost post Mother’s Day.
So it’s still somewhat a gamble.
The growing season in Colorado, at this higher elevation, is much shorter than what I’m used to having lived in Nebraska. That was the reason for the greenhouse (or one of the reasons). In theory I should have been able to plant inside the greenhouse weeks ago…but I just couldn’t get it done.
The last couple days, despite running on very little sleep, the little man allowed me a few hours to get my hands in the dirt and the planting has begun!!
Garden 2019 is scaled back again this year, but probably the biggest change in my gardening world is that I gave up a sizeable piece of garden real estate for the kiddos.
You know you’ve arrived at parenthood when….
Honestly, dragging their toy house and slide all over when we needed to water and mow was getting to be a literal drag. And their various toys needed a better home than scattered across the lawn.
In my continued attempts to be a realist, I know that I just don’t have the time, energy and stamina to keep up the large size garden that I typically have. Truth is, I struggled before two…and then three…kiddos.
But — I can’t give it up entirely either.
My mouth waters with the thought of home canned green beans. My mind swirls with visions of stocked pantry shelves containing home grown and preserved pickles, tomatoes, tomato juice, tomato sauce…and the list goes on and on.
Plus, what I have planted will put me to task even in its scaled back state.
I didn’t start seedlings this year. There just wasn’t time or brain power with an infant in the mix. So the bulk of my garden was purchased in plant form this year. A few things went in the ground as seeds – because there just really isn’t another way.
So, here’s what’s on tap this summer (my hand-written list and map, straight outta my planning journal):
The planting will continue over the next handful of days (maybe weeks pending weather and child cooperation). I’m curious though…how are your gardens coming along?
Kitchens are my very least favorite area of the house to spring clean.
There’s just so much elbow grease required because it’s, well, a room accumulating grease all through the year (unless you never cook, of course).So…let’s go ahead and get started with this one so you can cross it off your list.
Spring Cleaning Kitchen Plan Supplies
Vinegar and glass measuring cup
Ice cubes and salt
All purpose cleaner (a concentrated formula, with bleach, for the kitchen is my preference)
Grease cutting kitchen cleaner
Rags (either disposable or those that can be washed and re-used. Old cut-up t-shirts, wash cloths or small towels darner my collection)
Small bucket for water/cleaning solution
Spray bottle and grease cutting dish soap
Basket for items not belonging in kitchen
Kitchen Sink/Hot Water/Dish Soap.
Spring Cleaning Kitchen Plan of Attack
Start by removing light fixture covers/globes and get them soaking in hot, soapy water (I soak mine in the bathtub actually because of the large size and to keep them out of the way while I may need to access the sink throughout this project)
Start the clean function on oven (be sure to crack the kitchen window as this gets hot and stinky)
Set a glass measuring cup with 1-1.5 cups of white vinegar in an EMPTY dishwasher and fire up the extra hot washing setting.
Fill spray bottle with warm water and a few drops of dish soap
Run broom along all 90 degree angels to knock down any cobwebs
Starting toward the ceiling, mist walls (and ceiling, pending the status of your project) with warm water/soap and allow to sit for a minute or two.
With a warm and damp rag, begin wiping down (you’ll probably need to add some elbow grease) misted areas and work your way toward the floor being sure to remember tops and fronts of appliances (i.e. fridge, microwave, etc.) and fronts of cabinets/cupboards. If you have especially tough grease build-up you may need to work over the area several times and/or use a tougher grease cutting solution. In most cases, however, the warm water and dish soap should do the trick.
Wipe out inside of microwave.
Fill bucket with warm water and concentrated cleaning solution.
Wipe down counters with concentrated cleaning solution as well as the sink (if needed scrub sink with a scouring pad).
Scrub light fixture covers/globes and set aside to dry
Wipe down baseboards with concentrated cleaning solution
Hand ‘mop’ floor using a clean rag and concentrated cleaning solution
Wash windows and fronts of appliances with glass cleaner and paper towels
When oven has cooled, wipe out inside to remove remaining ash
Return light fixture covers/globes to light fixtures
Pour out bucket of cleaning solution and spray bottle of water/soap. Rinse.
Drop a handful of ice cubes and 1-2 Tbsp salt down the garbage disposal (you’re going to just let this sit and do it’s thing)
Address items in basket not belonging in kitchen
Put away cleaning supplies.
Take trash to outside receptacle.
Optional Spring Cleaning Kitchen Tasks
Empty and wipe down inside of fridge and freezer, tossing any spoilt or freezer burned food. Return food to unit in an organized fashion and include a new box of baking soda to keep both the fridge and freezer fresh.
Empty and wipe down insides of cabinets and drawers, setting aside any items you no longer use that could be donated or sold.
Empty and wipe down inside of pantry, tossing any expired or stale food items and setting aside food items you won’t eat (but that are still within expiration dates) that can be donated to a local food pantry
Spring cleaning the kitchen is a LOT of work. Pending the size of your kitchen, you may decide to split this large sized chore into several days (again, getting tired and doing the job half-assed part way through isn’t worth your time. Best to break the project up and tackle on separate occasions when you can come at it refreshed).
As I’ve mentioned, my Spring Cleaning is going to be minimal, at best, this year. That said, after taking a good look at my kitchen the last few days I’m thinking I might need to devise a plan to really get after that area.
If you remember, I didn’t get to the kitchen last year.
And it shows (if you look closely). I’m not sure it can handle two years without a good once over.
I’ll let you know how I go about this given my limited resources (i.e. time, energy, motivation for this kind of project).
Anything you might add to a Kitchen Spring Cleaning project? Is yours already done and we should all be VERY jealous?