Friday, August 29, 2008

Thinning out the Supplies: Not a Gourmet Endeavour

My dog has gotten spunky lately. He is getting more and more brave about jumping up to places he is not allowed to be to get into stuff he is not allowed to get into. Last Sunday, it happened to be the chicken breast that I had removed from the refrigerator and placed on the counter prior to its preparation. I came into my room to print off the recipe, and when I returned to the living room, there were my perfectly defrosted chicken breasts, mauled and strewn throughout the (carpeted) living room. He knew he was in trouble. He put his eyes down and walked immediately to his crate. What really stinks about the situation is that I spent more than a little time planning this meal, finding the recipe, finding sides... I don't remember what we had instead. Probably Sonic.

Monday, Brad went out of town. I ordered pizza from Papa Johns.

Tuesday, Brad was still out of town. I stopped by the grocery store on my way home to purchase more grapes and picked up some pre-made chicken salad, which I had for supper in the form of a sandwich.

Wednesday, I ate leftover Pizza. (This is the part where we all think, wow... I didn't realize she was such a bachelor.)

Thursday, Brad came home and wanted something home cooked, he had been dining out at all of his favorite restaurants for the past three days. Poor guy. We had Tilapia Parmesan, Green Beans and a tube of Italian Bread.

Tilapia Parmesan
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup butter, softened
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon celery salt
2 pounds tilapia filets

Preheat broiler. Line a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with aluminum foil. Mix together all ingredients but Tilapia.

Arrange fillets in a single layer on the prepared pan. Broil a few inches from the heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Turn and broil 2-3 additional minutes. (More for thick fillets) Cover fish with Parmesan cheese mixture on the top side. Broil for 2 more minutes or until the topping is browned and fish flakes easily with a fork.

As previously mentioned, we also had frozen green beans, and I baked a tube of Italian bread. I gotta admit, other than shape, I couldn't tell a difference between it and the tube of French loaf, but for $2 and fresh bread in 20 minutes, I am not going to complain.

This meal used Tilapia from the freezer and green beans from the freezer. Woo Hoo. It was also tasty, but If I did it again, I would make 1/2 as much sauce and just baste the fish with it. If you actually like the taste of fish, the sauce totally overpowers it. If you are trying to disguise fish for a picky eater, it is perfect.

Back to School Cookies

I keep forgetting to mention that I did make cookies the day before school started.

Brad's Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies
2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Sift together the flour and baking soda, set aside.

In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar. Beat in the instant pudding mix until blended. Stir in the eggs and vanilla. Blend in the flour mixture. Finally, stir in the chocolate chips and nuts. Drop 1/4 cup dough onto ungreased cookie sheets.
Bake for 12 to 14 minutes. Remove when the middle is set and the edges are brown. If they are nice and evenly brown in the oven, they are overcooked.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


Okay folks (both of you)... I know I have been remiss on the updates, but school started 2 1/2 weeks ago, and well, I've been busy. A) Busy and therefore not posting and B)Busy and therefore not cooking. Because it has been close to two weeks since an update, I will make a little sketch here to remind myself what I did when, and then will come back and add stories and updates. I'm going backwards...

Hamburger Helper

Orange Chicken


Dinner at Mom's... I brought blueberry pie

8/23 Taco Bell... Attack of the bacon...

8/22 Spaghetti and bread/ Nut Cookies

8/21 Thursday Parmesan Tilapia and herb rice pouch/ Chocolate Banana Bread

Wednesday, 8/20 Brad out of town...Pizza
Tuesday 8/19 Brad out of town... scrounge
Monday 8/18 Brad out of town... Pizza

Sunday 8/17 ... tragic chicken mishap... don't remember what we had

Friday, August 22, 2008

From the Request Line...

Summer Squash Enchiladas

1 medium chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cups chopped zucchini or yellow summer squash
1 4 oz. can diced green chili peppers
2 teaspoons chili powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 cup milk
1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
8 7-8 inch flour tortillas
1 1/2 cups chopped tomatoes

Cook onion and garlic in hot oil in a large skillet just until tender. Stir in squash, cook 3-5 minutes until just tender. Stir in half of chili peppers, 1 teaspoon of chili powder and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Stir one more minute. Remove from heat. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan melt butter. Stir in flour, salt, remaining 1 teaspoon chili powder and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Cook and stir about 1 minute. Stir in milk. Cook and stir until thick. Remove from heat. Stir in 1 cup of cheese until melted. Add the rest of the chili peppers. Stir 1/2 cup of cheese sauce into squash mixture.

Spoon 1/3 cup squash mixture down the center of each tortilla; roll up. Place tortillas in a lightly greased 13x9 inch baking dish. Pour remaining sauce over tortillas. Cover and bake at 400 F for 25 minutes or until heated thoroughly. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and the tomatoes.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

RESERVATIONS = What I Made For Dinner This Week

No Joke. Last night was the first night I'd cooked in a week. Don't believe me?

Last Friday Night, August 8, I made breakfast for dinner. We had french toast, which used up some leftover french bread we had, bacon (from the freezer) and scrambled eggs. The recipes for these items are posted on Thursday, July 17.

Last Saturday Night, August 9, as per a request from my darling fiance, Brad, we had pigs in a blanket.

Pigs in a Blanket
8 bun length all beef hot dogs, cut in half
4 pieces American Cheese, folded in half on the diagonal
2 packages crescent rolls

Preheat oven to 375F. Place one triangle of cheese in the triangle end of the crescent roll. Place a hot dog half at the wide end of the crescent roll, and roll up. Put on a large cookie sheet. Repeat 15 times. Bake in preheated oven for about 15 minutes, or until rolls are golden brown.

I served this particular delicacy with Ore Ida onion rings, baked in the oven per the package directions.

Last Sunday Night, August 10, I ordered Papa John's Pizza. One of the fund raisers I bought from a kid last year is a discount card, and on it is buy one get one free large pizzas from Papa John's.

This past Monday, August 11, was my first day back to school. We had Chinese Buffet for supper.

Tuesday was the day before the official "First Day of School." We went to a very yummy restaurant in Wentzville called West Allen Grill. They have nightly specials, which are delicious and very inexpensive. Tuesday night is Porterhouse Steak night, which include a porterhouse steak, a salad and a side for the low, low price of $13.99. Wednesday is Ribs and Thursday is Prime Rib. All are delicious.

Wednesday, the first day of school, was EXHAUSTING. I actually fell asleep at the stoplight on my way home. I realized I was in dire need of a nap, so when I got home, around 6, I set my alarm clock for 7. This was an unreasonable expectation, so I reset it for 7:30. I woke up to Brad at 11, very upset because I hadn't called or answered the phone for several hours and he thought something was wrong. I woke up for about 2 hours... long enough to make us both a grilled cheese sandwich and a can of tomato soup, do a few chores. I went back to sleep around 1. I did, however, use some supplies, as the can of tomato soup was from the cupboard. Do I need to post the recipe for grilled cheese? Really? There are whole cookbooks devoted to grilled cheese, so I guess perhaps I should.

Grilled Cheese Sandwich (as I made it on Wednesday)
2 pieces cheap wheat bread
2 pieces American cheese
1 piece Swiss cheese

Turn stove to medium. Lightly butter one side of each piece of bread. Place the buttered side of one piece of bread face down in the skillet. Layer cheese on top. Place the other slice of bread on top, buttered side face up. Cook until first side is golden brown. Flip. Cook until other side is golden brown and cheese is melty.

As for the soup, I made it on the stove top per the package directions.

Thursday, August 13, Brad brought home Sonic from work. We each had a popcorn chicken, and I had a mixed root beer float.

Friday, August 14, Brad brought home Taco Bell. I fell asleep minutes before he walked in the door, so I had my Taco Bell reheated the next day.

... which leads us to Saturday's Pot Roast...

I have two Eye of Round Roasts of approximately 2 pounds each in the freezer. I have no idea what one does with an Eye of Round Roast, but it looked really good when I bought it. After doing careful research, I realized it is a crock pot cut of meat.

Pot Roast
2 lb. Eye of Round
1 envelope dry french onion soup mix
1 can cream of mushroom soup

Place all three ingredients in the crock pot. Cover. Cook on high for 4-6 hours or on low for 8-12 hours. (I cooked on low).

This recipe makes its own gravy. The meat was pretty tender because it had cooked all day, but I think I still prefer my usual cut of meat for pot roast, which is chuck roast. I just trim the fat off and toss it in the crock pot with the same ingredients listed here. I think it is even more tender and delicious.

I served the pot roast with some instant mashed potatoes from the pantry and a tube of french bread. It is a whole loaf of french bread squished into a tube, like biscuits and crescent rolls, etc. They are in the refrigerated section at the grocery store.

I used the roast from the freezer and the potatoes from the cupboard. (And I cooked for the first time in a week. Tonight, I think we are having chicken enchiladas -- though that depends on if I go to the store to get tortillas... Either way, I have chicken defrosting.)

Monday, August 11, 2008

From the Request Line...

Seafood Fettuccine
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 cup chopped green onions
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled
1 pound sea scallops
2 cups half-and-half
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 pound lump crab meat, shell pieces removed
3/4 cups grated Parmesan cheese
8 cups hot cooked fettuccine (about 1 lb. uncooked pasta)

Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic; saute 1 minute or until tender. Add shrimp and scallops; saute 3 minutes or until done. Reduce heat to medium-low.

Add half-and-half, salt, pepper and crab meat; cook 3 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring constantly (do not boil). Gradually sprinkle cheese over seafood mixture, stirring constantly; cook one minute, stirring constantly.

Remove from heat. Combine pasta and seafood mixture in a large bowl. (Initially, it looks kind of runny. After standing for a few minutes, the pasta will absorb a lot of the liquid).

Friday, August 8, 2008

...all to not waste...

Have you ever wanted really badly not to waste some sort of food item, only to use a lot more ingredients and realize it actually would've been cheaper in the long run to let the original ingredient go bad? I first learned this with canned pumpkin. My favorite pumpkin cookie recipe requires 1 cup of packed canned pumpkin. A can of pumpkin has just under 2 cups in it. What does one do with 1/2 can of pumpkin? I don't know either, so I double the recipe to avoid throwing away a perfectly good can of pumpkin. Instead of wasting 1/2 can of a $.99 can of pumpkin (or worse yet, SAVING it, only to have it get lost in the fridge and resurface months later as a science experiment), I use twice as much flour and sugar and oil to create well over 100 pumpkin cookies. Even teachers won't eat 100 pumpkin cookies before they get stale, so if I have to throw any away, I've now wasted ALL of the ingredients and my time.

Enter the head of broccoli. I bought a head of broccoli at the grocery store last week, and knew I needed to use it up. I wanted to use it in a main course, because it would take us a week to eat that much broccoli as a side dish. What main courses include broccoli? Beef and Broccoli. Yum! (out of soy sauce). Stir fry - Yum! (out of soy sauce) Broccoli cheese soup - Yum. (the heat index today was close to 100) Broccoli casserole... includes cream of mushroom soup and Velveeta cheese. Also, as an extra added bonus, most recipes actually call for frozen broccoli rather than fresh. That just contains too many processed ingredients for me. I found a recipe for lemon broccoli risotto. It was tasty, don't get me wrong. It was darned tasty, even. But check out how many other ingredients I used NOT to let $2.50 worth of broccoli go to waste...

Broccoli and Lemon Risotto
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 large sweet onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 cup dry white wine (I used Yellow Tail Chardonnay)
4 cans chicken broth
1 cup heavy cream
3 cups cooked broccoli florets
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and saute until translucent. Add lemon juice, wine and 1 can chicken broth. Let simmer on medium heat, stirring occasionally, until rice absorbs most of the liquid. Add another can of chicken broth. Repeat this step twice more. When most of the liquid has been absorbed from the last can of chicken broth, add the cream, cheese, broccoli and salt and pepper. Stir well. Let simmer another 5 minutes before serving.

I used arborio and chicken broth out of the pantry, and the broccoli didn't go to waste, but in an effort to not waste produce, I chopped onions and garlic, and spent 45 minutes making a rice dish that also included relatively expensive ingredients such as cream and Parmesan cheese. But gosh darn it, I used that broccoli... My grandmother would be so proud.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

White Queso Dip

My friend Laura got me hooked on the white queso dip served at all the local Mexican restaurants. As I don't love Mexican food, and therefore don't thoroughly enjoy eating at Mexican restaurants, I have been trying to emulate the dip. Tonight's experiment proved to be another dissimilar, albeit tasty, attempt.

Mexican Queso Dip
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
2 tablespoons flour
1 can diced tomatoes with juice
1 4 oz. can diced chilies , drained
1/4 teaspoon salt
16 oz. Monterrey Jack cheese, grated
1/2 cup heavy cream

Melt butter. Saute onions in butter until translucent. Add flour and stir for about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes, chilies and salt, and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add cheese and stir until melted. Pour in cream, and stir vigorously for 2 minutes.

Serve warm with Tostidos...

It was good. It used a can of tomatoes and a can of chilies from the pantry. It was nothing like the kind they serve at El Maguey (Pronounced correctly, I think, is El Ma' Gway, but a girl I went to grad school with pronounced it El Ma' Gooey and so every time I think of that place I think El Ma Gooey'. What is funny about the situation is she actually thought that was how you pronounced it...) Mine was a lot thicker than theirs and less spicy. It was also kind of pink, and the kind at the restaurant is not pink, but rather white. I think next time I will leave out the flour and the tomatoes, and perhaps add some cumin and maybe some chili powder. Also, it lacked garlic. All food needs garlic. Unless it has chocolate in it -- that would be a bit weird.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Date Night Dinner

I have really been loving the Chesapeake Bay Seasoning from Penzey's ( According to the container, it is a mix of paprika, salt, mustard, celery, ancho, black pepper, red pepper, dill, caraway, allspice, horseradish, cardamom, thyme, ginger, bay, mace, cinnamon, savory and cloves. I have found that overdoing it makes the dish too salty, but I have been rubbing it on seafood lately, and it is very, very good.

For supper tonight, we had shrimpcargo, salmon, Au gratin potatoes, stuffed zucchini, fresh tomato and mozzarella salad, garlic bread and peanut butter pie.

Shrimpcargo (Recipe from my friend Amber... published at
1/4 cup butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 peeled and deveined large shrimp (21 to 25 per lb)
6 mushrooms, stems removed
2 tablespoons shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

Heat the butter and garlic in a skillet over medium heat until the butter begins to bubble. Stir in the shrimp, and cook until they just turn pink, about 3 minutes.

Divide the cheese evenly and stuff into the mushroom caps. Drizzle a spoonful of the butter/garlic mixture into each mushroom, on top of the cheese. Place one shrimp on top of each mushroom cap. Drizzle any remaining butter mixture over the top of the mushrooms.
Bake in the preheated oven until the mushrooms are tender and the cheese is golden and bubbly, 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve with bread to mop up any remaining garlic butter goodness.

For the salmon, I just rubbed it with the Chesapeake Bay Seasoning and baked it in the oven until it flaked, about 20 minutes. I also made a dill sauce. The recipe for that is posted on July 31 under "Post Boating Meal." The fresh tomato salad and garlic bread recipes have also been posted previously.

Au Gratin Potatoes (or as Brad says, "Old Rotten Potatoes")
5 medium sized potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
2 small onions, thinly sliced
1 cup sharp cheddar
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup butter, in
seasoned salt

Preheat oven to 375 F. Spray a square baking dish with cooking spray. Put down a layer of potatoes. Spread 1/2 of onions over potatoes and 1/2 of cheese over onions. Sprinkle lightly with seasoned salt. Put down another layer of potatoes. Spread the remaining onions and cheese over potatoes. Sprinkle lightly with seasoned salt. Cover with another layer of potatoes. Pour milk evenly over the top layer of potatoes. Sprinkle salt and pepper generously. Evenly space pieces of butter over the top. Cover with foil and bake for about 1 hour. Stick a fork in the middle after about an hour. When the potatoes feel like the texture you would enjoy eating, they are finished. You can also cover them with saran wrap and cook them in the microwave. I begin by cooking in 7 minute increments. As it gets closer to done, I decrease the time.

Stuffed Zucchini

1 medium zucchini
1 8 oz. package fresh mushrooms, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
3/4 cup white wine (I used Yellow Tail Chardonnay)
1/8 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1/2 cup 6 cheese Italian blend

Preheat oven to 325 F.

Cut ends off of zucchini, and then cut in half horizontally once and the vertically once, to get 4 pieces.

Cut or scoop pulp out of the center of the zucchini. Set shells aside. Chop pulp. In a nonstick skillet, saute the zucchini pulp, mushrooms and onion in butter for 3-4 minutes or until tender. Add wine. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 10-12 minutes or until liquid has evaporated. Stir in salt and pepper, breadcrumbs and cheese. Stir until mixed well. Stuff 1/4 of the stuffing mixture into each shell. Place in a baking dish, and bake for 20-25 minutes, depending on desired doneness of zucchini.

Peanut butter Pie (from, modified)

1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 cup peanut butter
1 (8 ounce) package frozen whipped topping, thawed
4 Reeses Peanut Butter Cups candies (2 packages containing two each)
1 (9 inch) prepared graham cracker crust

Beat together cream cheese and confectioners' sugar. Mix in peanut butter. Beat until smooth. Fold in whipped topping.

Spoon into graham cracker pie shell. Chop candy and sprinkle over the top of pie. Cover and freeze until firm. Store in freezer.

Dinner was really yummy, and used lots of ingredients I had on hand. When I ran to the store, the only items I needed to buy were 6 whole button mushrooms, tomatoes, french bread and cool whip. I bought the zucchini at the grocery store last week after boating, and I had sliced mushrooms in the fridge that needed badly to be used. I opened the package of fresh mozzarella a few days ago, so it was getting near the end of its life. I despise throwing away food, yet I seem to always have something go bad. I was pretty proud of how I used exactly the ingredients I needed to use.

As for the challenge, I used salmon and shrimp from the freezer and peanut butter and pie crust from the pantry. Somehow it seemed like I used more ingredients than that when I was cooking...

It was very very tasty.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Saturday Night Pork

I have not been remiss in updating so much as there really hasn't been much progress. Saturday, I made a pork tenderloin, which I will discuss later. On Sunday, I went to my parents house, and my mom and brother BBQ ed. Monday, we went out pre Muny.

Saturday, I ate pork tenderloin at 2 in the morning. Why? Because Brad was at work until close to 1 am, and didn't get home until 2. When he did get home, he was famished. I was famished as well, because I couldn't decide what to eat. I had the four bites of leftover chicken around noon, but that didn't fill me up for very long. I had a package of creamy chicken Ramen Noodles around 6. Once again, not sure where the Ramen Noodles came from, but I have been eating them nonetheless.

Pork Tenderloin (from

1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons white wine
1 1/2 teaspoons dried minced onion (or about 1/2 of a small onion, chopped)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pinch garlic powder
2 (3/4 pound) pork tenderloins

Place soy sauce, brown sugar, wine, dried onion, cinnamon, olive oil, and a touch of garlic powder in a large resealable plastic bag. Seal, and shake to mix. Place pork in bag with marinade, seal, and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 F. Spray a 13 x 9 inch pan with cooking spray. Place the tenderloins in the pan, so they are not touching each other. Bake for 30 - 45 minutes or until cooked completely. (165 F in the center, or until when you cut it open in the center it is all the same color and looks like something you want to eat... whichever method you prefer...) Slice into medallions and serve.

I also made some frozen peas (cooked in the microwave) and some instant mashed potatoes (prepared per the box directions). This meal used boucoup (sp?) freezer and pantry ingredients. The tenderloin and peas were in the freezer, and the instant mashed potatoes were in the pantry. I used to NEVER NEVER NEVER buy instant mashed potatoes, but I went through a phase where all I wanted to eat were potatoes, but I didn't want to expend the time or calories involved in making homemade. My friend Sarah said Betty Crocker made some decent instant, and I have to agree. Don't get me wrong, they are still instant, but they aren't bad. I doctor them up with cheese and sour cream and I'm none the wiser. (Actually, I am because I make the potatoes, but still... you get the point....)

On Sunday, I went to my 'rents, where my bro BBQ ed. He is an awesome BBQ er. He made stuffed burgers. As best as I could tell, as I was playing with my nephew while he was cooking, he made the burgers with the usual seasonings, then he made really really thin patties. Actually, I think my mom made the patties. Either way, he put some grilled onions and bacon and white cheddar cheese in the middle, then molded another patty on top and grilled. Yum! He also made me shells and cheese, which I LOVE. It was a delightful meal... and I didn't have to cook because I brought home a burger and some mac and cheese.

I contributed dessert to the meal, which is usually my contribution. This week, I brought an ice cream cake from Cold Stone Creamery. It had a layer of yellow cake, followed by a layer of cheesecake ice cream. Repeat. Then, there was a layer of raspberry puree around the outside of the cake, followed by a layer of raspberry frosting. On top, were frozen raspberries. There is still a piece in the freezer. I'm not sure why I have not eaten it yet. Hmm. Now I am going to be thinking about that one lonely piece of ice cream cake in the freezer. It is still in its original container, so it is taking up a lot of space. Tomorrow is trash day, so I could eat the cake today and put the big plastic, non recyclable container in the garbage. Will power. Will power. Will power.

Monday we were going to go to the Brasilian restaurant with my 'rents ( coupon). I checked the web site to see if they were open on Monday, and it said they were open 7 days per week. We got there, and they were closed. Jerks. We went to an Italian restaurant instead. It was pretty good, though I spilled my full glass of ice water on the table. While klutzy, I demonstrated great skill in my spill, as I managed to avoid spilling it in the bread basket, on the appetizers or on myself or my family. It was a four napkin spill, though, as it took everyone's napkin to get it cleaned up.

After supper, we went to this season's final Muny performance... Fiddler on The Roof. Act I was fantastic. I'm sure Act II would've been good, too, but it was so flipping hot. We left after the PoPos broke up the wedding. Upon arriving back at the car, we were both drenched in sweat. (Yummy!) The intermission didn't even start until 10 pm, which means if we had stayed the entire time, we would've been exhausted and dripping in sweat. (again, Yummy!)

The Muny this year was great, and this last show was the only truly miserably hot day.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

What did I do wrong?

The options are endless, but clearly I did something wrong because last night's dinner didn't wow me. It woed me. Here's what I did...

Chicken Satay Marinade/ Sauce
2 chicken breasts, cut into strips

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
6 tablespoons lemon juice
6 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons Penzey's sweet curry powder
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
4 cloves garlic, crushed

I mixed all of the marinade ingredients together, added the chicken and let it marinade in the fridge for about 2 hours. Then, I just dumped the whole combination into a heated skillet, and sauteed for about 15 minutes until the chicken was cooked thoroughly and the sauce thickened.

I served it over jasmine rice with steamed green beans.

It was hot and spicy, but without a lot of complex flavor so maybe I would leave out the hot sauce in order to only have the curry flavor, or maybe I could leave it in and add another tablespoon of brown sugar. Perhaps I should have just used it as a marinade and made a different sauce...

I just ate the leftovers, and it was really good today, so maybe it just needs to mature. Hmmm.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Yummy, Yummy, Yummy, Yummmmmmy

For lunch today, I had Ramen Noodles. Feel free to wonder why I had Ramen Noodles in the pantry. I will wonder, as well. For the first time ever in my life, I was craving Spaghetti-Ohs. As I'm not sure I've ever even had a Spaghetti-Oh, I was pretty confident I didn't have any in the pantry, but I checked anyway, just in case. There was a very slim possibility that I moved some from Brad's apartment, but I doubted it. I did check, though, just in case. Alas, no Spaghetti-Oh's, but there was Ramen. I haven't had Ramen since college. I remember making it in my hot pot in the dorm. Ahh... the memories.

For supper, we had Mustard Chicken, Rice-a-Roni and Sugar Snap Peas. I used lots of the "stash" for this.

Mustard Chicken (from - prep modified a bit)
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1/2 cup spicy brown mustard

1/2 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup butter, melted
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons water
1/8 teaspoon paprika

Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly spray a shallow baking dish with cooking spray.

Cut the chicken into strips and place them in a dish. In a separate shallow dish, mix bread crumbs, Parmesan and paprika.

Coat chicken pieces with mustard, then transfer to crumb mixture. Coat well with crumbs.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet. Gently place coated chicken in skillet. Cook for about 3 minutes per side.

Remove chicken and place in prepared baking dish.

Mix butter, lemon juice, water and paprika together and pour over chicken. Cover and bake for 20 minutes, or so.

This dish used chicken, from the freezer.

I also made a box of Parmesan Rice (from the pantry) per the package directions, and some sugar snap peas in a Ziploc steamer bag with a bit of butter, salt and pepper.

I have been trying to incorporate lots of vegetables into our diet, so I give us huge portions of veggies and smaller portions of everything else. It has been working pretty well so far.

I would highly recommend everything I made today, even the Rice-a-Roni rice box. It was quite good.