Friday, April 29, 2016

Food for Thought

Now, I love winter.  Love it.  My second favorite season.  But, now, even I'm over it.  If it needs to be cold, it can just rain.  

Yep.  Snow.  It's snowing.  Again.  Today.  Tomorrow.  Sunday.  Joy.  More wet, heavy, crap snow.  I'm watching it fall now and trying to judge when to go cover my flowers.  

The weather has postponed the annual school's Race for Education, but not the half day that came with it.  I'm running up to get the Girlie, later, who has an all-day class this weekend in prep for taking her CNA over the summer.  I think I'll probably have to get the tulips covered before I go.

We are definitely back in the comfort food cooking zone.  Again.  My menu from this week reflected the schizophrenic behavior of our Colorado Spring weather.  It also reflects my trying to cook to work with the restrictions hubby is putting on his eating.  There's no sweets, but not because I didn't make any, I just didn't make any with a new recipe. ;)

This Grilled Greek Lemon Chicken was made when grilling didn't require a parka and an umbrella.  It was light and fresh and moist.  It was Spring over hot coals.  The leftovers made a great wrap with fresh spinach, feta and some leftover sauce from this recipe.

This Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet looked okay; the results were not quite what I expected.  I seemed like it was more a filling for a wrap.  Turkey tends to crumble well, but that makes it hard to eat in a dish like this, which needed something more than mozzarella to hold it together - which is why it felt more like a filling, than a stand alone.  Fresh mozzarella might have done a sight better, being a little creamier when melted.  There wasn't enough seasoning for us.  I salted and peppered the crap out of it, and ended up adding chili powder, because even the pepper flakes didn't do enough.  I'm sure some of the lack of flavor is due to the lean nature of turkey.  With fat comes flavor.  And potatoes in general need more seasoning.  I liked the sweet potatoes, but you'll need a small dice to get them to cook in the time allotted.  I added a couple tablespoons of water to the pan while cooking the potatoes - this helped steam them and brought up the bits of flavor from the bottom of the pan. This recipe is a good base to somewhere, but it requires more work and experimentation than I feel like putting in.

This Salisbury Steak Meatballs with Gravy and Mashed Potatoes was everything the Turkey Skillet was not.  Full of flavor.  Warm.  Well sauced, well, gravied (I ended up adding an additional cup of Beef Broth to thin the gravy.)  I only had a pound of ground beef, so I cut down the ingredients in the meatballs by a third and got 28 meatballs.  The potatoes were creamy and a perfect base for the meatballs.  Raves all around the table.

I doubled this Honey Dijon Garlic Chicken recipe for an in-law dinner night.  They were moist and really flavorful.  I didn't have a stone ground dijon, so I used regular dijon and it worked just fine.  I loved the sauce from the drippings - garlicy without being a punch, mellowed honey and that bite from the mustard.

Pulling this Slow Cooker Bourbon Brown Sugar Pulled Chicken with Bacon and Brussels Sprout Corn Slaw came together faster than typing out its name.  I wasn't sure I'd have time to pull it off since I hadn't defrosted my chicken in the morning.  I did a quick pop in the microwave to get them partially thawed and threw them in the slow cooker.  I had boneless, skinless thighs, so I used two and a half pounds instead of four skinless bone-in (I couldn't find a conversion on how many I should have used.)  This fed way more than six - even with bone-in I think it would have fed more.  They were really flavorful - a sweet, tart bar-b-quey sauce.  The slaw was a nice fresh pop.  It was light and just creamy enough to hold it together.  Fresh corn on the cob is still some ways off for us here, so I pan-roasted some frozen kernels.  I'm sure, second day servings will be even better.  It is a sloppy eat, but well worth it.

I've got dinner and a dessert to pull together for tonight.  A son with a half day to get before heading up to get the Girlie.  Some fun mail is due in today.  There's a few de-clutter spots in the house to deal with.  The 15 y.o. has several things to get started this weekend, and will need much over-the-shouldering to be sure it gets done.  If I manage my time well, I might be able to complete the sorting project still laying where I left it two weekends ago.  

Or I may just become one with the couch.

Happy Friday,

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