Sunday, July 20, 2014

Beef with Peapods


My last post was a great chicken and peapods recipe so I thought I'd share a beef version this time. This one actually came before the chicken version and it sort of paved the way for that and a couple others. The inspiration to make this came from a craving for some beef chop suey from our local Chinese restaurant. So instead of calling to place an order, I decided to create something with what I had on hand. I'm big on that, you know...

So I checked out what I had and a bag of peapods from Costco was staring back at me. I knew I had some steak - also from Costco - so I thought about combining them into a simple stir fry with some chop suey sauce similarities. It wasn't exactly like chop suey, but it's exactly what I was going for. I wanted a deep flavor that really highlighted the beef as the main ingredient. The sauce was mellow and not too overpowering so it really let me meat flavor take center stage.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Chicken with Peapods and Carrots


According to my 5-year old, this is the best dinner he's ever had. Now, he does seem to say that a lot, but this time he said that it was not only better than pepperoni pizza or chicken noodle soup, but it was also better Panda Express Orange Chicken. It's a special treat type of thing, but he loves that damn orange chicken....

This diner gets an A+ from all of us. I'm so happy when I'm able to create something that everyone likes and that can actually make people smile. My husband - who is even pickier than the boy - loved it! Now that is a big deal because he just honestly couldn't care less about food. I just don't understand that but to each their own I guess.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Steamed and Buttered Red Potatoes




If there's one thing my mom always goes to in terms of potato dishes, it's this. She's made it for years and always just whipped it up every time. She never followed a recipe but knew exactly what she was doing so it was the same delicious flavor every time. Moms are funny like that...

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Tortellini Primavera




Every once in awhile I buy fresh tortellini. And when I do it's only from Costco because #1 the price is amazing and #2 it's really good. There is a lot though so I end up freezing about two-thirds of it. I love to create new recipes using this tortellini because it's so easy to work with and it's cheese-filled so it goes with everything.

I also look for new ways to incorporate vegetables into our meals that aren't just sitting as a side dish. Not that there's anything wrong with that, it's just fun to have them involved with the main course sometimes. This pasta dish is great because you can use any vegetable you have in the fridge or the freezer. You can get really creative with this one so I encourage you to use your favorites to make this dish your own. We love broccoli and always have some in the freezer so this was the main vegetable in this version. I combined it with carrots and red pepper but you can easily use zucchini, peapods, other peppers, onions, tomatoes, or anything else you can think of! Serve it up with a salad or some crusty bread and you're good to go!


Monday, June 16, 2014

Cherry Chipotle BBQ Sauce



I recently bought a big bag of frozen cherries at Costco because I was going through this massive smoothie phase. I wasn't that crazy about these cherries in smoothie form though so I've been trying to find other ways to use them up. It was warm outside and I was thinking about grilling and the idea of a cherry BBQ sauce popped in my head. I like using fruit in interesting ways and I've done a mango BBQ sauce before so cherry was a good next step. (I plan on doing even more though - especially peach. Yum!) I took an inventory of what I had in the pantry and after writing up a recipe and getting everything cooking, I had a really good sauce that went perfect on our chicken. It had a great balance of tangy and sweet along with a tiny bit of heat and smokiness. I used about a third of what I made on three chicken breasts so there is plenty with this recipe. The rest can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for about a month.

I think I'll give this sauce a try on some chops or ribs next time!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Grilled Honey Mustard Pork Chops




Since warmer weather is finally here, I've been working on some new grilling recipes. I've been getting bored with chicken lately so I've turned my focus to pork. We bought a large tenderloin at Costco a few weeks ago and after cutting it up and portioning for a ton of meals, I left a little bit out and cut it into chops. I new I wanted to grill them but it took me a couple days to decide how and with what.

I had written a crock pot recipe for a honey mustard chicken a few days earlier so I decided to adapt it a bit for the pork and the grill. It seemed like the perfect combination. After a few tweaks to my original mustard sauce, I had a glaze that worked great with the fire.

Friday, May 9, 2014

1-Pot Pasta: Creamy Tomato and Spinach




I have found my new go-to dinner. I've seen a few of these one pot meals around and I decided it was high time that I whipped up my own. I wasn't quite sure how my recipe would turn out since I've never made anything like this before and all the ones I've seen have linguine or fettucini noodles, but I honestly couldn't have asked for a better result.

Including all the prep work, the entire meal took me a little over a half hour. It was one of the easiest things I've ever made and it was delicious! The boys loved it and since it was all cooked in one pot, the clean up was a breeze.