Thursday, June 28, 2012

From my kitchen

Since I'm just counting the days until we head to Atlanta (1!), I haven't been able to find a really exciting post to write about. I was looking through my iPhone pictures and thought I'd share what we've been eating the past month or so. Enjoy!

Iowa Girl Eat's Buffalo Chicken Quinoa "Mac" & Cheese 
 This was REALLY yummy. SINFUL. Connor is a Mac & Cheese snob and really enjoyed it. It's definitely not trying to be Mac with the texture, but it was a really good cool night casserole. HIGHLY recommended!

 My own frankenstein creation of Greek Nachos. Use Pita Chips (tortilla chips get soggy) and top with canned tomatoes, black olives, red onions, chickpeas, artichokes, & feta. Bake until the cheese gets melty.

I definitely love a good Greek Salad and this was very interesting. I know I would eat it again, but I'm not sure Connor loved it.

 So there's this restaurant in Charleston called Five Loaves. They used to have this amazing pasta dish on their menu with fresh pasta, salmon, peas, & bacon in a light cream sauce. I instantly fell in love and try to make different versions of this whenever I feel Charleston home-sick.

1. Boil water for whatever pasta shape you desire
2. Cook the bacon pieces. Try not to eat them right out of the pan. Drain them but keep most of the oil in the pan for the veggies.
3. Sautee onions & garlic in a little oil and add asparagus (farm fresh! yum!) & peas (frozen, but frozen is still really good!). Cook until they're bright green.
4. Add in the bacon bits and cooked salmon. This is a great way to use leftover salmon from the night before.
5. Your pasta is probably done by now, so once you've drained it (SAVE 1 CUP OF THE PASTA WATER!), throw it in with the veggies. Put that pasta water in as well.
6. Now, depending on how naughty you want to be you can do one of 2 things. For a lighter version add in a squeeze of lemon juice, a healthy drizzle of olive oil, and parmigiano cheese. If you're REALLY sinful, throw in some marscapone or cream cheese. Up to you.
7. Devour
 You might not know this about me, but consider this a little gift. INA GARTEN is my idol. Seriously. That girl is FAB in so many ways. I have all of her cookbooks (One's coming out in Octoberrrrr. Holla!) and constantly refer back to her recipes whenever I'm not feeling creative (ummm. like every weeknight).

So I had some fresh scallions, mint & basil from the market, and some mayo I needed to use up. DINGDINGDING! Ina's Basil Green Goddess Dressing. Seriously you can make this with anything! I didn't use the sour cream because I didn't have any, but I think you can substitute greek yogurt for the base, no problem. Just blend up garlic, mayo, lemon juice, and your fresh herbs. Miracle! I also didn't have any anchovy paste but there was definitely plenty of tang. Don't go buy it if you don't have it. This was an amazing snack!
I was so happy when I went home the other weekend for Father's Day (oh shoot, I haven't posted about that yet! Gotta upload pics first! Blogger fail), my sister & I went to the farmer's market to get stuff for our picnic that night. We stopped by No Bull Burgers and sampled more than we should have. I picked up an original pack for Connor & I, and a mushroom/roasted garlic pack for Meredith. Seriously guys, these are THE BEST veggie burgers on the planet. And I have tried a lot.
From their website: "NoBull Burger, the Gourmet Veggie Burger ® is a mouth-watering burger that is loaded with hearty organic ingredients packed into an organic & natural veggie burger. NoBull Burger is filled with high protein, whole grain fiber and nutrients. Not meant to be meat imitation, but a bold flavor, whole food, true veggie burger. But most of all it tastes amazing! We start with organic lentils and barley with chunks of organic carrots, spinach, onions, spelt, free range eggs (from happy chickens!) and wheat free tamari sauce. Each burger is handmade and pan seared in 100% canola oil creating a revolutionary, power food that leaves you feeling good about eating a burger!"

I can tell you what, I do feel good about eating this! The texture is awesome and so hearty. Not trying to mimic the texture of beef (ewwww). Hope you can try them someday if you're in VA, MD, DC!

Anyways, I really wanted to have them one night but we didn't have hamburger buns. Not a problem, I just turned it into a hot dog! It's weird but I think I prefer eating it this way? Served with local green beans sauteed/steamed with lemon juice, and an avocado/tomato/lemon juice "salad" served on the Basil Green Goddess Dressing.
This was a really yummy dinner that we still have leftovers from (my lunch today!). We had some ground lamb in the freezer that I thawed and cooked with all of the veggies from the fridge. Easy! I used up our zucchini, onions, spinach, basil, and tomatoes. I also added some canned sauce (cheating! But the simplest trick in the book!) and a hearty GLUG of red wine and let that simmer for a while. I put this over whole wheat angel hair and it was delish!

My weeknight meals are always about using the last of this-or-that veggie. I'm not good at all about planning meals. Which is weird because I'm really organized with almost everything. Not meal planning, though! Oh well. Luckily I have cooked long enough that I can usually throw something together without needing a recipe, and in time for when Connor gets home.

Are there any inspiring meals y'all have tried recently? Please share!


1 comment:

Sarah O said...

Wow, your menu has been impressive lately. I've been dying to try quinoa and I'm thinking it'll be for dinner this week. Thanks for all the great recipes!