Monday, August 20, 2012

Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow

What I did Yesterday (over the weekend, really...):


Yes, I glued every single one of those little roses on there...



This is what I did Today:
I went from this:

To this:

And this is what I'll be doing tomorrow:
Just so my Husband has brownies to take to work on his birthday...
Smitten Kitchen Brownie Recipe

Mmm...

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Dinner Highlights

So.  I know there are some people out there that are able to menu plan like champions.  They're organized and make lists of what they're going to make and what they'll need for the next week or two of meals.  Some of them even prep all their meals on one day and then pull things out of the freezer... or make more of one meal so they can use the meat in the next nights meal, or maybe even two nights.  I know there are people out there like that.

I am not like that...

I wish I were like that, I wish I could plan ahead and know what I'm going to make... and I've tried it.  I had one week where I planned out everything we were going to eat... but by day 3 or so, I was way off from the list, and just ended up doing what I always do... which is throw a meal together with whatever I have in the fridge/freezer and hope it goes well.

And I've gotten pretty darn good at doing that.  I don't look at recipes (generally) I just rummage around in the fridge and see what I've got.  Usually the meals turn out ok, sometimes they turn out amazing.

Here's some of the highlights:


This meal did not turn out as well as it looks.  The chicken recipe was from ringaroundtherosies.net - it's the Teriyaki chicken recipe... I think it would have been alright with chicken thighs instead of breasts, because the meat turned out really dry after cooking in the crockpot. I generally have some rice sitting around from another meal, and I'd just made hard boiled eggs earlier that day, so this was a pretty easy meal to put together (especially since I went through that phase when I liked making Bento lunches and bought some rice and egg molds from my local Asian market).

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I have to give some thanks to Trader Joe's for this meal. It's pretty much from there, except for the nut pesto on the pasta (the nuts and oil came from Costco).  So, the meat is the Chimichurri Wild Pacific Salmon from Trader Joes - I don't usually like cooked fish (I'll eat Sushi, but not cooked fish, I know I'm weird) but this fish is AWESOME.  I've bought it quite a few times, until my local TJ's ran out, but they promised me it'll be back in the fall... it better be back in the fall...  The lettuce and tomatoes are from TJ's (I love the mini heirloom tomatoes).  And the pasta is the linguini they sell at TJ's.  Yeah... it was a good meal.

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One night I decided to make fried chicken nuggets, mostly because I'd just made chicken fried steak and I had the oil out already... I had also been watching Paula Dean fry some bacon wrapped macaroni and cheese... yes, that's right... go look at it and feel your arteries clogging.  But from that I learned that you can use crushed up crackers instead of bread crumbs.  And what did I have sitting around?  Crackers.  And of course chicken and eggs and flour.  Anyway.  This chicken was amazing.  I think I could have done bigger pieces... I ended up coating some of them in Frank's RedHot Wings Sauce and put them in a salad with blue cheese dressing... mmm... I'm drooling just thinking about it.

***


This was another fish meal.  Weird, I know... but since TJ's was out of the Chimichurri Salmon, I ended up trying their Wild Marinated Soy Ginger Cod Fillets.  And I have to say... they did it again.  It was delicious, and I might add very easy to put in the oven and bake for 12 minutes.  I didn't think I liked fish, but I am a changed woman.  The noodles are based on the Korean dish Japchae.  The first time I made it was a while ago (mostly because I found the mung bean noodles at my local supermarket) and it's delicious.  This time, I used whatever veggies I had sitting around, some in the freezer and some in the fridge.  It all went together really well.

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Well, I think that's about all for now.  If any of these sound really good to you, then leave a comment and I'll try to remember the recipe so I can post it :D


Friday, July 27, 2012

Grilled Eggplant Lasagna

I was just wandering around the farmer's market near me, gathering the usual things I buy... onions, tomatoes... you know, the normal stuff.  Then I saw them.  The most beautiful dark purple, almost black, eggplant... aubergine if you prefer.

When I had a BBQ at my disposal, I used to love marinating slices of eggplant in olive oil and balsamic vinegar and grilling it.  Some of my friends would make it into baba ganoush - there is nothing like homemade baba ganoush.  My mom makes an eggplant caponata that is amazing.  And of course, there's always eggplant parmesan.  Eggplant is just so versatile.

I will also mention that when I was in Scotland with some dear friends, there was an Indian restaurant below our flat that made the most amazing eggplant recipe... I only wish I could remember the name or find the recipe, because it was a taste of heaven on a fork... I'm not kidding... absolute heaven.

Now... with all those wonderful ideas running around my mind, I bought 2 aubergines to take home and cook.  After a couple days of not being able to make up my mind about what I would turn these beautiful purple nightshades into, I finally decided to make up my own recipe.  So I give you The Lazy Wife's Grilled Eggplant Lasagna.


Normally, I have more pictures, but I wasn't really sure the recipe would turn out that great, so I didn't take pictures till I had the whole thing assembled.  Oh well. 

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Grilled Eggplant Lasagna

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Instant Frozen Yogurt

It's summer here... it's so hot that it feels like summer is slapping me in the face:

Summer probably does slap a lot like Batman.
Yes.  That's how it feels.

Anyway.  Here's just a few ways I get relief from the summer heat without having to leave our apartment complex:

1) Go for a dip in the pool.
2) Crank up the AC in the apartment.
Or
3) Make some delicious frozen yogurt.

Let's focus on that last one :)


I've been making a series of cooling beverages in my blender.  Because every iced drink tastes better blended.  Then I started thinking about lassis.  They're basically yogurt blended with some fruit and maybe some other stuff.  This recipe is somewhere between frozen yogurt and a lassi - and like most of my recipes, I didn't really measure when I made it, so the measurements are approximate and you can adjust it to your own tastes.

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Sunday, July 1, 2012

Some Like it Hot

Nope. Not talking about the movie... I'm talking about snacks.

My husband really likes spicy chips.  Like the FLAMAS® DORITOS®. They're pretty darn spicy... I can eat like 3 or 4 before my mouth catches on fire... but he LOVES them.  He also likes running, and having an extra pound or five can really make running a pain... literally.  So, rather than run out to the store because my husband was craving a high calorie hot and spicy snack, I made some Spicy Edamame.

I didn't use a recipe for these, so the measurements are approximate and really up to your own taste... but here goes.

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Spicy Edamame

1 bag frozen Edamame (I got mine from Trader Joes)
2-3 cups water
1 1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (more if you want it spicier)

Put the water in a pot. Bring it to a boil and add 1 teaspoon salt and the edamame.  Boil for about 5 minutes (basically follow the instructions on the bag), then strain the edamame.  Place the edamame in a bowl, add the remaining salt, chili powder and cayenne pepper and mix.  Enjoy!


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If you've never eaten Edamame in the pod, you hold one end with your fingers and stick the pod into your mouth up to your fingers, then bite down slightly and pull the pod out to squeeze the beans out of the pod.