NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

PortWatch

July 17, 2013

Snack attack

Tortilla chips are easy, delicious to make at home

Most of the time, we live in a chip-free home. No potato chips. No tortilla chips. Not even any vegetable chips.

It’s not that we don’t enjoy them. Just the opposite, really. And that’s why we don’t buy them. If we have chips in the house, we will eat them.

I’m also not thrilled with the ingredients used in many chips, mostly highly refined stuff paired with gobs of fat and salt. It becomes easier to simply not have them around.

Which doesn’t mean we never eat chips. It just means that when we want them, we make them from scratch.

Don’t roll your eyes just yet. Do-it-yourself chips are simple to make. They also put you in control of the ingredients used, happen to be insanely delicious and can be seasoned however you like. And depending on the method used, they can be on the table in about 10 minutes. That’s fast enough that I sometimes make them as an after-school snack for my son.

There are, of course, many ways to make chips, from the currently hip baked kale chips to slowly roasted beet chips to old-school fried potato chips. But over the years, I have found three varieties that lend themselves particularly well to healthy eating and simple, speedy snacking — fried corn tortilla chips, baked whole-wheat tortilla chips and baked whole-wheat pita chips.

Let’s start with the fried. Yes, they still are deep-fried, so there is some fat involved. But we do it at a very high temperature. The higher the temperature, the faster the chips fry. The faster the chips fry, the less oil they absorb. Plus, you get to control how much salt is added. And you will find that warm, freshly fried tortilla chips are so delicious, you don’t need much salt. You can also use the same frying method with flour tortillas.

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