Parmesan Oven Fries

I love to cook.  I like to think I’m rather good at cooking too.  I can roast the pants off a chicken.  Whip up some amazing pasta in cream sauce {with leeks and sausage, perhaps?}  Scones for breakfast?  Ready in 30 minutes.  My Pinterest is brimming with both sweet and savory food ideas.   I have all these great ideas running through my head at all times too.  From full-scale recipes to inklings of meals inching toward the consciousness.

Then the Problem.

The Problem usually presents itself about thirty minutes before meal preparation. I realize that I used up the last of my milk or cream yesterday.  Only one egg remains.  My parmesan wedge is down its last inch.  And fresh vegetables?  Yeah, right.  And so all my big dreams fizzle out before they had the chance to lift off.  And I’m stuck in a kitchen filled with bits of  food and nothing to eat.

And that’s when I end up eating meals of cheese, crackers and apple slices.  Or a big bowl of popcorn and grapes.  And everyone’s favorite: cereal for dinner.

These parmesan oven fries evolved from a day without a single viable option for lunch.

I’ve often wondered why people don’t make their own fries more.  I grew up with oven fries –  my mom pulling them from the oven, steaming hot and crispy.  Fries don’t require a deep-fryer.  They don’t require a pot of hot oil jumping and popping.  A hot oven, drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper are all that’s required for creamy, crispy fries.  And what’s even better, you can pop them in and forget about them.

Parmesan Oven Fries

2 large Russet potatoes
2 Tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan (or more, because really, you can’t have enough Parmesan!)

Preheat oven to 375 with the rack in the middle.

Peel and cut the potatoes into long sticks (fries), approximately 1/4 inch thick.  Place them on a parchment lined baking sheet and drizzle with the olive oil.  Sprinkle on salt and pepper and toss to coat.   Re-arrange the fries so that they are in an even layer and none are touching.

Bake at 375 for 30 – 40 minutes, turning halfway.

When they are crispy and the centers are cooked, remove them from the oven and sprinkle them with the freshly grated parmesan cheese.  Toss to coat.

Serve hot.

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