Sunday, May 27, 2012

Good Stuff from This Week

My camera was lost for a few days....seems a curious little toddler hid it in his toy bin!  It also appears to be stuck on a setting that looks like drawings instead of pictures, but I'll have to fix that later when the battery is recharged.  Meanwhile, Highlights from the past week (or so):

Spinach and feta-stuffed chicken breasts, and basil couscous.

I LOVE spinach and feta together, it's one of my favorite flavor combinations.  The tomatoes were OK.  I wish that there was a way to make canned tomatoes not taste like the can that they were packed in, but haven't figured out a way to do that.  The couscous is a mix, it was pretty good.  I used to shy away from couscous because of its dryness, but with the right saucy meal, it's perfect.

First burgers on the grill for the season!

A beautifully moist burger patty recipe, courtesy of Cooking Light.  Served atop baby arugula, topped with sauteed onion and mayo.  And on the perfect crusty bun, toasted of course.  This burger was out of this world!  I'd never had baby arugula before, it's got a peppery bite to it.  And onions sauteed in butter make any meal better, not to mention the wonderful aroma they bring to your kitchen.  On the side:  sweet potato waffle fries from the freezer.  I liked them, but I think that I was the only one.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Spicy Joes

Sloppy joes....I grew up disliking them and never wanted to have them.  I found out as an adult it was because I detest the canned "Manwich" sauce.  Homemade sloppy joes, with pepper and onion in the meat, and a dash of cider vinegar in the red sauce, though, are delicious.  And better for you, considering the amount of salt in "Manwich."  Homemade sloppy joes are so good, and make incredible leftovers because they get better with age.

So, sloppy joes for dinner last night.  We were going to give the boys their first taste of a sloppy joe.  Until I got a little nibble while I was plating them and said "Whoa!  These are way too spicy for the kids!"  Turns out, if you don't have the tablespoon of chili sauce (kind of like spicy ketchup), you can't substitute sriracha.  At least, not tablespoon for tablespoon.  These things were so spicy, they were nuclear!!  Brian and I got through them, both with burning lips and polishing off a pitcher of iced tea.  (Which was full at the beginning of the meal.)  Any leftovers were promptly discarded.   Chalk it up as a flop, or half a flop, if you will, since we ate them anyway. Not in a rush to do that again!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

The Makings of Awesome

On the menu for tonight:  beef and eggplant casserole.  Picked not by me....but Brian.  I read the menu when he wrote it up and gave him a blank stare.  "Are you sure?  Eggplant?"

Glad he was up to it...I adore eggplant.  This casserole (from the trusty old "9x13, The Pan that CAN!" cookbook I received as a gift a few years ago.) was incredible.  So incredible in fact, that I didn't take any pictures because I was too busy devouring it.  It was a pasta meatsauce, with bits of fried eggplant.  What's not to love???

Lots of leftovers, and even hubby wants to take some for lunch tomorrow instead of his usual ham and cheese sandwich. This one is obviously a keeper.  (The recipe AND the man!)

Pasta and Muffins

Highlights of this past week:  Three Cheese Penne Bake.

  The recipe was in some magazine this week, I think it came with Brian's copy of Time Magazine.  It was cheese (well, duh) spinach, chicken, peppers and pasta.  We opted to swap ricotta for cottage cheese, I despise cottage cheese.  A perfect dinner, with lots of leftovers for lunch later in the week.  It even served as dinner another night for Brian and I, stopping us from succumbing to the Takeout Pizza Monster.

Later in the week, I made chili.  It was not good.  I've made chili many times, but usually use tomato salsa as a base.  This time, there was no salsa in the house, we'd eaten all of it with guests last Sunday and forgotten to buy more.  So in a pinch, I used spaghetti sauce as the base.  Also, we had no red kidney beans in the house, so I used the only thing I had for beans in the house:  white kidney beans.  I thought they'd be better than nothing....I was mistaken.  No leftovers from this epic fail.

However, corn muffins were part of the menu plan on Chili Night.  Whenever there's baking to be done, both boys come scrambling to the kitchen, begging to help.  Will got there first this time, and got to mix the muffins and help pour:

Brian has a few weeks off before his FINAL grad school semester this summer, so we'll be sure to eat better in the weeks to come.  :)