Sunday, August 31, 2014

#39 Pasta with Roasted Eggplant Sauce and Ricotta

 This year in the Kid's Club garden we grew eggplant. Beautiful purple globes. With the kids back to school the produce from the garden is up available to any one who will use it. So I used the eggplant for this recipe. Roasted with garlic and then pureed to make a vitamin rich sauce. Again with tomatoes fresh from the garden. It feels good to be using this produce to feed my family.
Sorry, poor camera quality. This was a day with no camera. Had to use DD's computer.
The ricotta. A bit of an education on the ricotta. Apparently it was suppose to be ricotta salata,which I did not even know existed. It is more of a crumble than traditional ricotta. In the end I used plain ricotta and it was fine.
This picture was taken with my old phone.
Delicious! So good I did make it again for a garden potluck. By having the ricotta on the side and using gluten free noodles. It made it a nice gluten free and vegan potluck meal. With the ricotta optional. I of course would add the ricotta.-Mom

I was surprised that the roasted eggplant tasted so good. I tried a piece before we pureed it as I had never had eggplant to my knowledge. Not bad. -DD

Friday, August 29, 2014

#38 Grilled Flank (Sirloin Tip) Steak Sandwich with Arugula and Pears

Steak! I like steak.
We had leftover arugula salad so we just used it. It was after we finished cooking that I realized we were suppose to  switch out the cheese from parmigiano-reggiano to blue cheese crumble. Oops.
The meat was suppose to be flank steak so I sent the boy out to the meat freezer and told him to look for flank. He could not find flank but brought back a few different steak varieties for me to use instead. With a freezer still well stocked I was not going to go buy flank. Not going to do it!
I went with sirloin tip. It grilled up nicely.
Then we sliced it against the grain. Yum! We made one sandwich each and then ate the remaining steak on the side. I am not sure if steak was ever intended to be a sandwich.

I skipped the arugula salad. But I like steak! -DD

Thursday, August 28, 2014

#37 Warm Lemon Chicken Sandwich with Arugula and Pears

This one called for kaiser rolls, to make it gluten free we switched kaiser out for Udi's classic french dinner rolls. To toast them I butterflied them and put them in the toaster. They worked great. I will use these in the future for picnic, mini subs.
The chicken, lemon fresh and moist. The arugula, I am not sure if it was out of season so more bitter than normal or if we are not necessarily arugula fans. Overall, the sandwich was good.

Not a fan of the arugula.-DD

Thursday, August 21, 2014

#36 BLT Pasta Bake: Bacon Leek and Tomatoes

BLT- Traditionally this would stand for bacon, lettuce and tomatoes. But in this recipe it stands for bacon, leek and tomatoes.
It was similar to a mac-n-cheese as it started with a rue. Yet it had the additions of the BLT and then baked afterwards.
Great flavor. Nice texture.  More fresh from the garden tomatoes.

Bacon, yum. Leeks, not bad. Tomatoes, not the best in pasta. -DD

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

#35 Sauteed Sweet Chicken Breasts with Spicy Fresh Tomato Chutney and White Rice

What happened?
The short of it is this, my computer got wonky. My camera went missing for a couple days and I had to rely on my hubby, which delayed things. Within a few short days I got out of rhythm.
I am sorry. We were still cooking, taking pictures, and eating meals. Now I shall attempt to get them posted here in the blogosphere.
Those tomatoes in the picture, fresh from my garden. The honey jar, currently MIA.
This chicken was sweet and moist. A great combination of flavors. I would happily eat it again.

I was not sure about the sauce so this is what my plate looked like.
It was good. -DD

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

#33 Three Beans and Some Chicken

Pancetta in the house!  When I say that I exaggerate the HOWWWSSE.
With pancetta in the house we were good to go for number 33.

The chicken did a quick marinade in some lemon juice, oil and thyme while we started on the bean dish. Unfortunately,  my dash of red pepper flakes turned into a dump of red peppers into our dish. I was able to get most of it out but maybe not enough. Oops!

The chicken cooked up nicely and we finished up the  bean dish which ended up being four beans instead of three since I used the three bean salad from Aldis and still added the cannellini. It worked well once rinsed.

The dish really was fabulous albeit spicy. Everyone needs a good nasal cleansing every once in awhile. I still went back for seconds even though it had heat.
Momma liked it,

The chicken was good dipped in the bean sauce, the beans were SO spicy it was crazy and I also did not like them because the beans did not taste right to me.
The dish was pretty good (well except for the beans, and the spiciness of the beans) :D

Pictures coming....

Monday, August 18, 2014

#34 Sweet Sausages Braised in Onions with Horseradish Smashed Potatoes

A pro of having hubby home is no leftovers. A con of having hubby home is that he sometimes eats ingredients that are vital to a recipe. Pancetta made it's way to a pizza that hubby made for sweet girl. I really can not be too upset. He was trying to be helpful. However, it did mess up plans for #33. Yet we need to eat so we moved on to number 34. Sweet sausage and smashed potatoes, yes please!

I was not too certain about the horseradish in the smashed potatoes so I started out with a small amount. DD insisted on more, and then even more still. It was great!

The sausages braised in a sweet onion mixture making the end result a scrumptious combination of flavors. The onions themselves were amazing!

This meal was a total hit! Can I have it again tomorrow?

It was really good! The smashed potatoes were a little  plain but that worked because they tamed the sausage. Thumbs up!

Dad left the SD card at work, pics will be posted tomorrow.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

#32 Ribollita con Verdure

A variation!
Added some veggies, pancetta, and red wine. Switched out chicken broth with beef broth.
A key part of these soups is stale bread. Now it is somewhat difficult to get stale gluten free bread. I decided to toast it and added it directly to the soup as instructed for the last recipe. This time I toasted it and added it as more of a crouton. This was how the family preferred it. Agreed.
This one is also topped with raw onion.
Good stuff! We finished it in one setting.

DD has a double ear infection. :(
She did not feel much like cooking or eating. Hoping she feels better soon.

More Fantastic Reads

“I am a part of everything that I have read.”
― Theodore Roosevelt

My three favorite from this stack were Every Soul a Star by Wendy Mass, The View From Saturday by E.L. Konigsburg, and Escape From Mr. Lemoncello's Library by Chris Granenstein. They are all good though.
I was not expecting mythology in the Underneath so it was not really my type but it was fantastically written.

Friday, August 15, 2014

#31 Papa al Pomodoro

 Another title that leaves you wondering what exactly will you be eating. In English this is a tomato based soup with strict instructions that it must be eaten with raw onions.
 Rather simple preparations; chop, saute, mix, cook and top with raw onions.
See Rachael, we added the raw onion. It is legit. We did Torello proud.
It was fantastic! A new winter go-to discovered.

It was a soup, do I need to say more?

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Summer Sleep Overs

My daughter is trying to milk the last bit of summer for all it is worth. Three day, three sleepovers at different houses. A trip to the blueberry farm. Skating with friends and family. She is having a great week. Hence no recipes the last three days. I am sure I will get her back soon and when I do we will be back at it.

Hey, it's summer. Enjoy!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

#30 Paella Burgers and Spanish Fries with Pimiento Mayonnaise

 Busy weekend! We had a nice get together with our old neighbors in their new home. Then today we were babysitting 4 minions in their home. We managed to make it home in time tonight to make recipe #30. Woot woot!
 This burger had an unusual combination of flavors; ground chicken, chorizo, and shrimp.
I made the mistake of not draining the pimiento before making teh dressing. It came out a little running but tasty.
I liked this chicken burger better than the previous one. The additional flavors were a nice addition. The shrimp was perfect. I still prefer beef over chicken.

This one was good, much better than the other chicken burger. I skipped the shrimp. And the fries were awesome!

Friday, August 08, 2014

#29 Beef Fajita Burgers with Seared Peppers and Onions

 This originally called for making both beef and chicken fajita burgers for the same meal but let's be realistic, the kids and I do not eat THAT MUCH. Since we like beef better than chicken we made a decision and ditched the chicken burger. Tomorrow is a kind of chicken burger so I don't feel bad.
 The burger master did her thing with the beef while I cut up and seared the peppers and onions.
We went with toasted Schar GF Ciabatta Rolls for the the bun. They were an excellent choice,
Served with a side of Kettle Sweet Onion chips and a dill pickle, this one was a home run.

Tonight I will be taking my first ever trip to Ikea. Canton here we come!

I REALLY like this one. It was delicious.
-The Burger Master

Thursday, August 07, 2014

#28 Pasta with Spinach, Mushrooms, Pumpkin and Hazelnuts

Such an interesting day. We started off with Kid's Club. I had to make two trips to the nearby apartments as I had kids lined up on the sidewalk wanting to participate. It is always fun listening to them chatter in the back seat in Nepali. I usually follow along alright, not every word but usually enough to understand what the conversation is about. Today was an interesting one about my dog and how it poops outside. Funny kids.

Then we had a guest for a few hours, my daughters friend. They practiced running through a play DD wrote this week. Good stuff.

Then in the early evening we did something that terrified my children. We went to class of children all learning their native language. My kids sat wide eyed as the teacher did all the instruction in Nepali. He handed out pieces of paper and taught them the first 15 constants of the Nepali alphabet.

We made it through the first three lines of this chart. After each line all the students were asked to go to the chalkboard and write them. My daughter was terrified. She would not move. She would not go up. The boy wrote one letter from each of the first two lines. I went up and wrote them all. They were fish out of water. Thrust into a new environment with new circumstances, Somewhere in the middle of class I made a deal. If she would go up and write the last line she would not have to eat spinach pumpkin pasta for dinner. She took the bait. She did it as did the boy, they wrote all of line three up front on the black board in front of everyone. Phew.

We went to Wendy's for dinner. I figured they were courageous enough tonight, I did not want to torture them. And you know eating spinach AND mushrooms is torture.

So we were making a meal that no one really wanted, what to do? I contacted our college intern at the garden and asked if he would like tonight's dinner and he was totally on board.

We came home, DD helped with the prep and I cooked it up in no time.
We scratched the sausage and added spinach and hazelnuts to yesterday's master recipe.
It was actually better than I thought it was going to be. I kinda liked it.

I took the rest to the garden where our college intern more than liked it, he loved it! He enthusiastically chowed down a huge serving and asked, "Man, what is wrong with your kids? This is awesome!" Their loss, your win. They would consider the fact that he ate it instead of them a huge win for them. Oh well.

While at the garden I helped one of my favorite families dig up their potatoes. I love digging up potatoes, it is like digging for treasure. Big, red, beautiful treasure.

Great day!

I did not like my Nepali class. I would rather have a private tutor for my Nepali because all the other kids already knew Nepali and understood more than me. I want to do it one on one. I was glad I did not have to eat this meal, really glad.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

#27 Pumpkin Pasta with Sausage and Wild Mushrooms

 Did you see that last word in the title there? My kids did and when sweet girl saw it she had made up her mind that this dinner was not going to be any good. Sigh. I understand her predicament. I too grew up in a home that loved mushrooms but as a child I despised them. Unfortunately for me ham and mushroom was my families go to pizza. I was told to pick them off, which I did.
 Now as an adult I really like them. Taste buds do change. I am hoping that process speeds up a bit for my daughter so she can really enjoy these delicious foods she is helping prepare.

Never in my early days of youth would I have ever conceived pasta, pumpkin, onions and mushrooms all in the same meal. And I would have pitched a fit had I thought I might have to eat it. I also would have never imagined I would like it!
But I did! I think Rachael is a fan of nutmeg and I am beginning to agree.
The boy came to the table and the first thing he asked, "Does this have mushrooms in it?" Yes. Sigh.
Then he tasted it and said, "This is actually good." At least I have one in the family who is willing to truly try something before judging it.
DD on the other hand took a small serving with nearly no meat or mushrooms. She loved the sausage but she could not distinguish between the two in the final product so she erred on side on little to none.
We are in trouble tomorrow; spinach and mushrooms in the same dish, a variation of today's meal. Lord have mercy, who is joining me for dinner?

I only had a small bit of noodles with no vegetables or mushrooms. It was kinda good. As for tomorrows dinner, I am skipping.

Jr Spartans

We raised our kids right, we raised them to be Spartan fans.

They have attended various games through the course of their life. The boy even went to a MSU hockey game in utero, where he kicked the beats of the MSU fight song. We have celebrated Final Four appearances and Rose Bowl victories.

We are Spartans.

This summer the Jr Spartan membership was brought to my attention and I was super excited to sign the kids up. It includes a t-shirt, membership card, free admission to all home Baseball, Women's Basketball, Field Hockey, Gymnastics, Wrestling, Men's and Women's Soccer, Softball and Volleyball. But wait, there's more... free tickets to MSU vs Eastern Michigan football game with tailgate. The tickets came today and with it the announcement that are now official Jr. Spartans.
Super excited!

Go STATE! We are looking forward to a great year.

To find out about this amazing program for your Jr. Spartan click on the link above.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

#26 Florentine Meatballs with a Bonus

 The day stated out perfectly, reading a book, cover to cover. I had the kids do some school work today to refresh their memories on what school is like. Ha!

A couple of weeks ago I came across a recipe on facebook that called my name, followed by the words, "Eat me!" The recipe Caprese Lasagna Roll Ups.
When we saw that today was meatballs only I decided now was the time for the lasagna roll ups.
This picture is both the floretine meatball and lasagna roll up ingredients.
 Amazingly, I had everything on hand except one of the ricotta and italian blend cheese. Woot woot! The tomatoes were also fresh for sweet girl's garden. The first red ones of the season.
DD made the meatballs while I worked on the roll ups.
 #26 Florentine Meatballs+
The meatball sauce was cheesy and full of flavor. The salad was from yesterday's lunch from Zaytoon, yum! Thumbs up on all three.

Oh happy day! I think I will go read another book.

I like the lasagna. But I didn't really like the meatballs or the sauce.

Monday, August 04, 2014

#25 Taco Chili-Mac with Quesadillas

 A variation from yesterday. We added some ground beef, hot sauce, Worcestershire, cumin and chili powder.
 Sweet girl mastered rolling out tortillas. We prefer to use a pot lid to get nice circles.
 They cook up so nicely. This is such a beautiful sight to a gluten free girl like myself. Super cheap and easy.
 #25 Taco Chili-Mac with Quesadillas
Yummy yummy for my tummy. Fantastic combination. It reminded me of lasagna.
A must make again.

I am getting really good at making quesadillas!

Sunday, August 03, 2014

#24 Salsa Stoup and Double Decker Quesadillas

This day almost slipped away from me. I was sitting here in my sweltering home, sipping, gulping down some Pink Moscato when I realized I had not yet posted today's dinner.

Back in March I stumbled across a winning recipe for tortillas in the Gluten Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread. I have come back to it a few times over the last couple months and when I saw today's recipe needed tortillas I knew just what to do. A tip for those who may try to make them, use parchment paper, roll out your tortillas, cut them to your desired shape, I use a bowl or lid, then transfer them to your skillet with one side still attached to the parchment paper. Once you begin to heat the other side the paper peels right off. (YEAH!!!)
 The cut vegetables smelled deliciously of salsa.
#24 Salsa Stoup and Double Decker Quesadillas
 The quesadillas were fantastic dipped in the salsa stoup. Yum! Another win for me.

The quesadillas were awesome. The stoup? I prefer my salsa cold.

Bonus shot- Hubby put the floor of the loft in this weekend. The kids have been enjoying their secret spot. Here DD is reading to her older brother., enjoying each others company even. An even bigger win than tortillas and tasty stoup.

Friday, August 01, 2014

#23 Boo's Smoky Chicken Patties on Buttered Toast with Bonus Ice Cream

 Mama is tired! This week has been a whirlwind of activity from our mini vacation, to theater rehearsals and performances, throw in helping a friend move and preparing our home for guests. Indeed this mama is tired.

Yet we still have found time to cook. It is a good thing this one was an easy one. A basic burger mix with spices, served on buttered toast.
Simple stuff- #23 Boo's Smoky Chicken Patties on Buttered Toast
 I was not a fan.
Mātra kukura mana translated says, "Only the dog liked it."
She got the last of bite as I did not want to finish it. I think maybe I prefer red meat for my burgers. Oh well! This one will stay with the dogs as it won't we making a return to my table.

The only saving grace of this meal was that it came with a bonus dessert recipe and that was a WINNER!
Boo's Vanilla ice Cream with Chunky Peanut Butter Sauce and Cookies
It was suppose to be gingersnap but I substituted lucy's cinnamon thin cookies.
Now this one was good. Really good. Too good to share with the dog, good. This will be made again.

I don't know what Boo was thinking for liking these burgers.
I did like the ice cream and sauce. That is a keeper.