Sunday, January 29, 2012

A menu for this week

I won't try to pretend that I will be better about keeping up my blog because I know myself too well. But when I can, I'll do it, okay? Okay. Sunday: Rancher's Pie A Mediterranean themed shepherd's pie with beef and topped with sweet potatoes. Monday: my Mom's Cheese Soup Somehow rich and light at the same time. Warm & soothing and just sooooo good. Absolutely nothing like nasty beer-cheese soup. Tuesday: Cheez-It Chicken, Sweet Potato Fries and Roasted Broccoli Yummy, kid friendly and easy Wednesday: Stubb's marinated Pork Chops on the grill, Roasted Curry Scented Cauliflower and Sautéed Spinach I've been craving this cauliflower for weeks. Thursday: BBQ Ranch Turkey Burgers with Black Bean & Corn Salad Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Chicken & peppers

My new culinary obsession? Peppadew peppers. Sweet, a little kick, vinegary goodness. Here's what I'm doing with them tonight.

2 bone in/skin on chicken breasts
1 yellow onion, sliced thin
1 each red, green, yellow bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
3-4 cloves garlic, rough chop
8-10 peppadew peppers, rough chop
1/2 teaspoon thyme
Grape tomatoes, halved (30 or so? About half or more of one of those plastic containers)
1/2 small bag of mixed baby potatoes (red, purple and yellow) halved or quartered, depending on size
2 glasses Pinot Gris or other dry, white wine (1 for you, 1 for the pot)

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

In a big dutch oven, over med high heat, sear the chicken 3-4 min each side until golden/crispy. Set aside.

While the pan is still hot, sauté the onions for a minute or so. Once they're translucent and the pan has cooled slightly, toss in the peppers & garlic (you wanna cool off the pan because burnt garlic is bitter and awful). Sauté together for about 5 minutes. Add the baby potatoes and cook another 10 min. Then add the peppadews, thyme and tomatoes cooking just until heated through. Add in a glass of wine (and pour a new one for yourself). Bring to a boil, add a bit of water if the veggies are not mostly submerged. Snuggle the chicken atop the veggies and cover tightly. Cook at 400 for 25 minutes (check the chicken for doneness with a meat thermometer... Big pieces take longer).

When done, set the chicken on a board to cool, use a slotted spoon to pull out the veggies and place the broth over high heat. Reduce it until about a cup of liquid is left. You can thicken with a roux if needed. Bone the chicken and stir everything back together. if you have it, my husband wants you to throw in some chopped up grilled Italian sausage at this point. Some leftover ham is a nice, salty touch too.

Serve in shallow bowls with some crusty French bread. Sweet, spicy, rich and so colorful. I am totally obsessed with this meal.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Pork tenderloin with pineapple mango salsa

My family went so crazy for this that I'm hauling myself out of a cold medicine stupor to post about it.
1 pork tenderloin (you could use chops or a loin too - just adjust the cooking time)
BBQ rub (I had some leftover but any purchased spice mix would be good)
Coat pork with rub, drizzle with olive oil and grill. Set aside to rest.

Into a medium bowl combine:
1 large, ripe mango, peeled, chopped
1 small can chopped pineapple (drained - this juice is a hot item at my house with husband & kid doing tricks to see who gets it)
Juice of one half lime
1 bunch fresh cilantro, clean & chop (you could use less but my family freaking loves cilantro)
Stir together and set aside until dinner time. Easy!

Make some white rice (I added in the zest of the lime along with the juice of the other half lime). Done

Serve the pork sliced atop the rice and then mound the salsa over it (if I'd had a jalapeño handy, I would've chopped and tossed in there..... Woulda been awesome).

My 7 yr old ate thirds. Thirds. Nicely done me.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Quick Tuscan Style

Pork chops:
4 thin cut, bone in pork chops. Season with salt, pepper, spices (we used a rub for chicken tonight)

Grill. Done.

Tuscan White Beans:
2 cans canellini beans, rinse/drain
1 can diced tomatoes (including the juice)
Garlic, salt, pepper, olive oil, thyme
Combine in sauce pan. Bring to simmer. Turn off heat, serve warm.

Sautéed spinach:
1 pig baby spinach
Olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper
Heat oil, garlic in pan. Add spinach and toss until wilted. Remove from heat. Serve.

Easiest dinner ever. Especially if your husband makes it, like mine did tonight. Thanks babe!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Crazy Fusilli

Turns out there were no beet greens to be had at my grocery store (apparently I live in a culinary backwater).
So here is how you make it

1 pound fusilli (follow directions on package)
8 oz goat cheese, crumble & set aside

1 eggplant, sliced into slabs & grilled, then chop into bite sized pieces
1 zucChini, sliced, grilled then cut into bite sized pieces.

Sauté together:
1 onion, diced
3-4 cloves garlic, smashed & minced
1 red pepper, seeded, chopped
1 can diced tomatoes, drained

I had some leftover sausages from lunch and a few kalamata olives so I tossed those in as well.

When the pasta is done, pull about a half cup of the water out and set aside.

Toss the pasta back into the pot with everything above and toss to combine. If it's too thick, add a bit of the pasta water and toss over the heat until it's all nice & creamy.

I love when I just wing it and it turns out yummy.

I'm baaaaaaack!

After a long, incredibly hot summer of salads, grilling out and vacations filled with corn-on-the-cob, bacon and ice cream I am back to the routine and ready for some cooler weather.

School has started and activities are in full swing so I may be calling an audible from time to time but here is the plan for this week. Happy first day of football to my wonderful husband. I know this is second only to Christmas for him.

Sunday: grilled Italian sausages, baked Caprese salad (okay... That was football snacks) and Fusilli with goat cheese tossed with grilled eggplant, peppers, zucchini and roasted tomatoes. Mmmmmm

Monday: grilled pork chops, baked sweet potato fries and sautéed spinach

Tuesday: karate night - eating out

Wednesday: chicken ranch salad

Thursday: BBQ turkey burgers

Monday, April 25, 2011

The Menu

Sunday: Cobb Nicoise Salad
Yeah - I totally confused these two salads in my head and came up with my own version. 

Monday: BLT & Egg Salad "Sandwich Bar"
A DIY Sandwich Bar with leftovers from Easter. 

Tuesday: David Sedaris & Dinner Out
Super excited to go see David Sedaris (Author of "Me Talk Pretty One Day" and others) so we'll be eating out.

Wednesday: Pork Chops, Broccoli & Sweet Potato Fries
Rain in the forecast all week (we need it, so I'm not complaining) so this may get pushed back or get made indoors.

Thursday: Taco Night
Who doesn't love Taco Night?