What we ate: his and hers soup, with sides

Last night’s dinner was mostly simple: vegetable and barley soup, vegetables, guacamole, with a little side detour into the epic time-sink land of a new (and ultimately inefficient) way of making sweet potato chips:
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The dietary tastes of our little two person household can be quite divergent.  I like less meat, he likes a little more.  One way of dealing with the more meat/less meat challenge is to make dishes where it’s easy to customize a bit at the end.  In this case, we made a big batch of vegetable and barley soup a few months ago and froze several containers of it.  Last weekend I made chicken stock and “rescued” the meat that fell off of the neck piece that I had added into the mix.   After heating up the soup (and doctoring it with sauteed garlic and red chilis), I added a bit of the shredded neck meat to one bowl, and a handful of chickpeas to the other.  Instant satisfaction for both of us:
The greens I had chopped up in my weekly Sunday meal prep, and guacamole is always fast if your avocado is ripe, so the rest of the meal came together pretty quickly too.  The sweet potato chips, however….not so much.  In the past I have used a vegetable peeler to “slice” the potatoes by hand.  This time I decided to be faster and use the slicing attachment on our food processor.  The slices are thicker than what you get with a peeler, so I knew this was going to be an experiment with some potential for failure, but the potential reward (fast, easy, homemade chips! in bulk!) was pretty tempting.  I sliced up some potato, heated up some peanut oil, and got going.
Results?  The chips *were* tasty, especially when heaped with guac.  But, they also took forever to cook (15 minutes or so per panful), no good for a weeknight dinner in a time crunched household. And, they did not get as crisp as the thinner slices I’ve made in the past.  I had been hoping that this approach would yield a means of quickly making a large batch of chips that could then be stored for later use, but it was not meant to be.  In future, I’ll be sticking with my trusty little peeler (or looking into a mandoline slicer, I’ve been eying this one for a while).


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