snack attack – avocado fries + onion rings

onion ring main

I never fry at home… like, never.

Never ever.


Of course, I see all kinds of recipes for fried treats that I would love to make, but I never dare make them. The danger of opening up my home to frying food ts too great. Making a batch of donuts then leads to eating a batch of donuts, then I know nothing will compare to the home made ones and I will have to make more of them, then eat more of them, then….. other things will start being fried. Everything really. Everything will start to be fried.

It’s a slippery slope there, a dangerous one, and I try to stay away from that slope at all costs.

Well, my friends, Pinterest struck again with these gosh darned avocado fries. I was so intrigued by the whole concept…. avocado FRIES??? Overcome by a recent addiction to avocado, I couldn’t resist. The image in my head of biting into a crunchy, salty exterior surrounding a warm, creamy avocado was just too much to bare. They must be mine.

So I broke my cardinal kitchen rule: thou shalt not fry.

And, while I was at it, why not throw some onion rings in there too? I always have about a thousand onions in my fridge. And I had extra buttermilk to use up anyway. I’m already breaking my rule anyway…. See? 5 minutes in and I’m already sliding down that slope… and it all started with an innocent little avocado…

Well, both were delicious. And I felt extra guilty after eating them, even though Boyfriend wandered into the kitchen at some point to help consume them… he had to run to the store in the middle of it and…  I don’t know what happened. I blacked out and they were gone…

Yeah…. too bad I can never make these again. Never ever. Ever. Make these again. But you… You should definitely make them. Even if you never fry, maybe especially if you never fry. They’re dangerously good.

Avocado Fries Recipe Adapted from Sunset Magazine

  •          Canola oil for frying
  •          1/4 cup flour
  •          1 tsp kosher salt (or other seasoning blend of your choice)
  •          2 large eggs, beaten to blend
  •         1 1/4 cups panko
  •         2 firm-ripe medium avocados, pitted, peeled, and sliced into 1/2-in. wedges
  •         Grated parmesan (or other seasoning blend) for serving (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 200°. In a large saucepan, heat 1 1/2 in. oil until it registers 375° on a deep-fry thermometer. (I had to switch pans after realizing my original pan was not big enough to use my spider with) Line a baking sheet with foil, if you have a baking rack, place that on top of the baking sheet which will allow the hot air to flow around the rings while they’re in the oven.

2. Meanwhile, mix flour with 1/2 tsp. salt in a shallow plate. Put eggs and panko in separate shallow plates. (I like to use paper plates so I can just throw them away afterwards. Wasteful, I know.)

3. Slice avocado and sprinkle the avocado slices with the remaining ½ tsp salt. (Maybe a little more, be generous with it). Dip each slice in flour, shaking off excess. Dip in egg, then panko to coat. Set aside while you finish the rest.

3. Fry a quarter of avocado slices at a time until deep golden, 30 to 60 seconds. Transfer slices to a plate lined with paper towels. Keep warm in oven while cooking remaining avocados. Sprinkle with salt and a little grated parmesan (or other seasoning), if desired. I did some with southwestern seasoning and others just plain salt…. Both were delicious.

Panko Onion Rings

  •         1 sweet onion, cut into medium slices, rings separated
  •        1 cup buttermilk
  •         ¼ cup flour
  •         1 tsp kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
  •         2 large eggs, beaten to blend
  •         1 – 1 ½ cups Panko bread crumbs
  •         Canola Oil, for frying
  1. Marinate onion slices in buttermilk 30 minutes to 1 hour. Line a baking sheet with foil, if you have a baking rack, place that on top of the baking sheet which will allow the hot air to flow around the rings while they’re in the oven.
  2. Preheat oven to 200°. In a large saucepan, heat 1 ½ inch of oil to 375° on a deep-fry thermometer.
  3. Coat slices in flour, then egg, then panko. Refill panko as needed. Set aside coated rings while you coat the rest.
  4. When ready, fry onion rings a few slices at a time, making sure to not let the oil temperature drop too low.  Place fried onion rings on the rack and keep warm in the oven.
  5. Sprinkle with final salt (or other seasoning) and serve warm (preferably with some ranch to dip them in)

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in honor of summer fiestas – salsa

salsa main

I’ve been hiding this recipe for some time now from my friend, Rob. All that he wanted ever since I started blogging (and really, before I started blogging) was a good salsa recipe. I tried to blackmail him in exchange for him learning wp code and making me a beautiful, glorious webpage… but he held out. What a little turd, right? Oh well, I will give you this delicious salsa recipe anyway. Know why? Because I like you that much. (Close your eyes, Rob!)

I don’t blame him for needing a salsa recipe – I struggled with finding a good one for a long time. No matter what I did, I just couldn’t achieve that restaurant-y salsa that I so badly wanted. I finally just gave up, I could still make pico- and if I must resolve myself to a lifetime of fresh pico – so be it! Never in a thousand years would I have imagined the key to unlocking great tasting restaurant style salsa was in a can.

Crazy, right? All this time I thought it was the fresh ingredients, maybe some secret black market spices, I wasn’t quite sure. I was positive fresh ingredients were an important part… then I saw PW’s recipe. The only recipe that was different from all the ones I’d tried before – using canned tomatoes. Canned?!? I can honestly say that I never in my life thought I would put a can of “Ro-Tel” in my shopping cart, let alone two… I guess there’s a first time for everything… Now that I know the secret of the can, I can adapt this salsa recipe into pretty much endless variations (and now, so can you).

It makes a lot though – so invite some friends over to share. You need them or else you will eat it… all of it. You will just black out and wake up with an empty salsa container and no chips… you poor thing, you. You don’t even know what you’re in for… Congratulations on your new crack salsa addiction. 🙂

Restaurant-Style Salsa – Adapted from PW


  • 1 can (28 Ounce) Whole Tomatoes With Juice
  • 1-2 cans (10 Ounce) Rotel (diced Tomatoes And Green Chilies) OR if you are like my sister and are afraid of heat – you can just add 2 cans of diced tomatoes – no chiles!
  • 1 small onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1/2 jalapeno, chopped (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp Sugar
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin (I used a little less)
  • 1/2 C cilantro
  • 1/2 lime, juiced

1. Throw everything in the blender, then process to desired consistency. Done-zo!

2. Salt & Pepper to taste, if you think it needs it.

Ok, that’s basically it, but since I like to make life more difficult and am maybe medium control-freak, I put the tomatoes only from the can of whole tomatoes, and reserved the liquid so that I could adjust the salsa to be as thick (or thin) as I wanted. Process without the liquid – then add the liquid in as you see fit (if you think it needs it)

Also, if you do ONLY canned tomatoes, you can use fresh peppers of any kind to your liking – which is better to control taste and heat than using Rotel

Pico de Gallo


The thing I’m struggling with the most with for this blog is measurements. Do you know how hard it is to measure things when you are accustomed to just throwing it together? It’s the little things, like how much salt really ends up in a bowl of pico? I tried so hard to measure the salt for this recipe. I use a salt grinder, which already complicates things for recipes. How much comes out in 1 grind? I have no idea… What I ended up doing was grinding the salt over a piece of paper as though I were grinding it over the pico, and then poured it from that paper into a measuring spoon. I still don’t know if I got it right. Thank you for making me feel extra crazy. Now, to the recipe…

Pico de gallo is one of those little things that can take your taco night from ‘average’ to ‘great’! It’s so simple and takes almost no time to prepare.  The fresh mix of tomato, onion, and cilantro can brighten up just about any dish.
I’ve been known to use pico not only to adorn my chips & tacos, but also as a welcome addition to my scrambled eggs. Throw in some ham and make a tasty omelet, or try stirring some fresh pico into your next batch of guacamole for added texture and flavor.

try adding some pico to your tacos on taco night!

Plus, it’s completely customizable (I’m noticing that I say that a lot… ) I know it sounds weird but try leaving out the garlic & substituting diced, fresh watermelon for the tomatoes. Fruit can give your salsa an interesting, sweet twist (mango would work, too).  Corn is another way to make your traditional pico a little sweeter (think of Chipotle). Want it spicier? Add more jalapeno, or switch to a spicier pepper. Less spice? Leave them out entirely! If you don’t like the chunky texture of pico, just throw it in a blender and puree away to your desired consistency!

Pico de Gallo


  • 2 tomatoes (I used Roma), chopped
  • ½ medium onion (red or white), chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced (I actually grate mine) OR a sprinkle of garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp fresh cilantro, minced
  • ½ lime – just the juice!
  • 1/8 tsp salt (Remember – it’s much easier to add salt than to take it out!)
  • Drizzle of olive oil

1. Mix it all together, cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. (Well that was easy…)


*Remember, I’m usually cooking for only 2 people. If you have a crowd coming over, double or triple the recipe.

*If you like a different ratio of tomato to onion, add more of one or the other. If you don’t like cilantro – leave it out! If you want more salt, add it. Don’t be a slave to recipes- CUSTOMIZE!!!

*If you replace the cilantro with basil, and leave out the lime, you will have bruschetta! Use it to top some fresh crostini! YUM!

*If you don’t like seeds, or prefer a less runny salsa, slice AROUND the core. You get all the flesh while avoiding the gooey insides. This works great for peppers, too!