Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Sloppy Joes

I made this recipe for lunch during a play date and we both really liked it.  My pictures didn't turn out very well, so I'm just showing you the finished product served with some sweet potato fries from the frozen food section at Walmart.  The Pioneer Woman did an wonderful job with her steps so I'm just going to give you the link to her site and tell you about a couple tweaks I made.

  1. I used 1 pound of ground beef and cut everything else in half.
  2. I used leftover red bell pepper from the stir fry instead of green
  3. I used smoked paprika instead of chili powder.  It gives it a smokey, kind of BBQ-y flavor instead of heat.
  4. I did use tomato paste, but not Tabasco sauce
There you have it.  A quick easy recipe that was also great as leftovers served over a baked potato.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Playing catch up

We had some plans change Friday night, so I made our sloppy joes for lunch instead.  I didn't like the way the photos turned out so, I'll be posting the recipe details along with a completed photo tomorrow.  I will also be making the honey pecan chicken Tuesday night with some pretty amazing mashed potatoes.  Here is a hint as to what makes them special: garlic, brown butter, Parmesan and cauliflower.  Yeah....they are pretty good if I do say so myself.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Thursday: Chicken Stir Fry

Chicken Stir Fry
I think this may be the healthiest thing I make.  It contains 7 vegetables!  I have a few other super-healthy dishes, but this one is for sure in the top three.  It's perfect for using up leftover veggies and getting a rainbow of colors in one meal.

I'm not gonna lie, it's a little work to chop up all the fresh veggies, but I think it's so worth it in terms of nutrition and flavor.  It's a great recipe to have kids help make.  If you prep all the veggies in advance and keep them in Ziplock bags in the fridge, you can pull this out and have a meal in about 15 minutes.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Wednesday: Thanksgiving Dressing

Thanksgiving Dressing
Our theme at house church this week is meals that remind you of your mom.  I chose this not because it is her recipe, but because I loved watching and helping my mom prepare Thanksgiving dinner.  My favorite dish was the dressing.  There is an art to making dressing.  Notice that I don't call it "stuffing."  Stuffing is slimmey and disgusting and cooks inside a raw animal carcass.  Nasty!  I like my dressing to be moist in the middle with a nutty brown crusty top.  My mom made delicious dressing and I have taken her same recipe, with a few changes.  First, I make a homemade loaf of bread and batch of cornbread where my mom bought a box each of Mrs. Cubbisons cube stuffing and cornbread dressing.  Second, I added some shredded zucchini and carrots for color, texture and to sneak in some veggies.  I think this is the best dressing I have ever tasted and wish I could get a Scentsy candle that smelled like it cooking.  I hope you try it and love it as much as I do.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Tuesday: Alfredo pasta with bacon, peas and red bell pepper

Alfredo pasta with bacon, peas and red bell pepper
I have good news and bad news.  The bad news is that I won't be making this recipe for dinner with homemade bread because have other last-minute dinner plans.  The good news is that we had the pasta for lunch.  The bread will have to wait for another day.

This is a quick, easy dish that is perfect for company.  Since it uses a butter and cream sauce it is not something that freezes well or or can be made ahead and re-heated.  The longer it sits, the sauce will go from being rich and creamy, to greasy and nasty.  It's also very rich, so a it doesn't take much to fill you up.

Monday: Family Dinner at Cracker Barrel

Most people hate Mondays.  It means the weekend's over, it's back to the grind and family leisure time is over.  Not for me!  I love Mondays because it means I don't have to worry about dinner (three times a month at least, I'm in charge of dinner once a month) and more importantly, I get to reconnect with Steve's family.  For the last few years we have been having family dinners Steve's mom and dad, his younger brother and his wife, his older brother, and his grandma.  When we first started these in 2007, there were six of us, but in 2009, Steve's younger brother got married and we had Wrigley.

Each household takes a turn planning where and when we meet and provides a meal.  This week we went to Cracker Barrel which is a rare treat because it's about 15 miles away.  I had the chicken and dumplings and it was delicious.  I also got to share some wonderful news about Susan....but I'll let her tell you about that later...

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Dinner at my house

Remember that poll we had over a month ago asking what recipes you would like to see on here?  Well, the winner was family dinners, so this week I will be sharing my menu plan and recipe tutorials throughout the week.  I must confess up front that if a day gets hectic and I'm not able to take step by step photos, I will at least make sure you have a photo of the finished product and the recipe.

I should mention a couple things about our family that affect our meals.  1) Every Monday, we have a family dinner with Steve's family which often means going out to eat, and 2) Wednesday nights are when our house church meets for a potluck dinner, so I will be sharing what I made for the potluck. So, here is this week's menu:

Family dinner at Cracker Barrel 

Alfredo pasta with bacon, peas and red pepper and homemade bread

Thanksgiving Dressing (made from scratch)

Chicken stir-fry with rice

Sloppy Joes, sweet potato fries, green beans and peanut butter cookies

Honey pecan chicken with mashed potatoes and roasted carrots

Chicken pot pie

Do you like this idea?  Please post a comment below.  Hate it?  Please keep your comments to yourself. My self-esteem is very fragile right now. ;)