Sunday, May 2, 2010

Fried Jicama

Since I have been on a low carb diet, potatoes are definitely out! No french fries! Ok so I have had maybe 3 or 4 because Alex likes to tempt me!

Introducing the Jicama, otherwise known as a "Mexican potato" or a "Mexican Yam Bean." It's actually kin to sweet potatoes and I hate them! Many people describe the taste as being a cross between a white potato and an apple because it is a bit sweet. However, it is low in carbs, fat free and high in Vitamin C. Once peeled and cut, it lasts up to 2 weeks in a Ziploc bag in the refrigerator and does not turn brown. It can be used in place of chips or crackers for spinach dip or cut thinly or in strips and fried as potato chips or fries.

It took me awhile to find them and I finally went to Harris Teeter on the advice of a friend. So on Sunday, I cut them in strips and fried em up in a little olive oil, added salt and pepper and some low sugar ketchup. They were pretty good, tasted almost like french fries with a hint of sweetness.

Saturday, May 1, 2010


I have always been a "tea drinker." Cold Southern Sweet Tea, that is! Occasionally, I had a cup of hot tea, but didn't think too much about it. A year or so back that all changed!

I don't remember exactly when I turned into a hot tea drinker. I guess it evolved. A couple of years ago, my sister-in-law, Sucha, took me to The Oatlands Plantation in Leesburg, Va for afternoon tea. I really enjoyed it, but I didn't buy any tea! Then Jenni and I had a girls' weekend at our beach house in the fall of 2008 and her college roommate, Meg and her mom, Kathy came and she brought a hostess gift of teas and a teapot. We all had tea and I enjoyed it. But that was it!

In late June, 2009, Jenni and I headed to the DC for a girls weekend with Meg and Kathy and they took us to The British Tea Pantry in Aldie, Va and it clicked. We shopped around in the quaint little town and I bought a cool little Sontu Tea Pot from TeaForte, along with a box of Raspberry Nectar tea. Now I need to back up to Meg's wedding in May 2007! The favors at the reception were individual TeaForte tea's on a single tea tray! I guess you could say, I got hooked on TeaForte! And over the next year or so I bought the matching cup to the Sontu cup, and a Cafe Cup for me and Jenni.

Last spring, we planned afternoon tea at The Pineapple Tea Room in Apex, with our good friends Pat and Hilary. There is where I discovered Octavia Teas and I purchased a tin of Berries and Cream after ordering it there. It is like drinking dessert. We were pleasantly surprised when Hilary and Pat served it at a Tea Baby Shower for Jenni a couple of weeks ago! They had another choice, but I think everyone chose Berries and Cream and raved about it!

Last December Jim and I went back to Charleston, SC to celebrate our anniversary and on the advice of another good friend. Carolyn, we visited the Charleston Tea Plantation. Of all the many times we have visited Charleston, we had never heard of it and we were pleasantly surprised. We learned a lot of cool things about tea and found out that this is the only place in North America where tea is grown due to the prime conditions of heat and humidity that exist there. Jim and I selected 3 tins of tea and now I have turned him into a tea drinker. We have learned to love the aromatic bergamot in Governor Grey. Then when Jenni, Ben, my dad and I were down there for the Cooper River Bridge Run in late March, I took them there for a tour and got some more teas! Jim and I enjoy "evening tea" almost every night after dinner, so I had to replenish my stock!

Meg and Kathy came to my house a few weekends ago for the baby shower at Hilary's and we shopped for teas at Southern Season after a wine tasting and then enjoyed afternoon tea at the Pineapple Tea Room the next day.

I also enjoy SleepyTime calming chamomile most nights. Not sure if it really works but it sure hasn't hurt! I guess you could say I am enjoying the art of tea! Take time to let your senses enjoy the aromas!

Next stop is the Washington Duke Inn for afternoon tea with Jenni and my mom and Amanda!