Tag Archives: food

July 9 2013 meal plan

backyarddinner

  • Pitas with roasted red pepper hummus, tomatoes, cucumbers
  • BLTs on torta bread with avocado
  • Chef’s salad with turkey, avocado, jack cheese
  • Smoked salmon, creme fraiche, thinly sliced cucumber on baguette
  • “Stuffed burgers” and a fingerling potato salad

I have no idea what stuffed burgers are, that is the husband’s request for a BBQ day. I have cheese, bacon, beef, avocado, lettuce, tomato, buns…so we will see what he comes up with. This week’s meal plan is dictated by not wanting to use the stove (again) and a plethora of avocados and red peppers from a recent Costco run. Also you can tell when I make my meal plans before eating lunch…that’s when there is meat all 5 meals instead of the normal twice/thrice a week. Oops!

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Weekly Meal Plan

I can’t believe we’ve lived in Portland for over 13 months now! One of the biggest changes we made when moving here was cooking. Yes, when we lived in San Francisco we rarely cooked for ourselves. No we didn’t live off Ramen like the common college stereotype. We lived off of tacos. And burritos. And nachos. Sort of came with the territory since we lived in the Mission District. Now I cook dinner everyday. The biggest help has been creating a meal plan and shopping from it once a week. I love the meal plans created for you in Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food Magazine, and usually use that once a month (except for when it involves expensive cuts of meat…) Other times I just make up my own meal plan based on whatever I’m craving. [This week, it was salmon, so that comes into play twice, haha.] Here’s this week as an example:

You may have noticed that my “weekly” meal plans are only 5 days long…yeah I’ve just found that’s the time frame that works best for us [sometimes we take a night off of cooking to go to a friends house or just eat leftovers]. You may also have noticed that all the recipes this week are from Everyday Food. Yeah, what can I say-I subscribe to the cult of Martha. 😉 Plus those recipes aren’t even really recipes per say, more like methods of cooking, and they often use less than 5 ingredients.

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Kingsland, Texas

Hey ya’ll!

I’m here in Kingsland, Texas (population 4,584) visiting grandparents that I haven’t seen in the better part of a decade. So far I’ve eaten fried catfish, fried okra, dirty rice (apparently the secret ingredient is chicken gizzards?), and hush puppies.

Of course I’ve made a dozen of these:

yellow granny squares

Fueled by a couple of these:

alamo beer

I also found a deer leg on the side of the road- knee down only, with the fur still on and everything….

In other news, don’t you ya’ll just love grandparents houses for kitschy craft inspiration? I know I do. So in the next few days I’ll be bringing you some of my finds.

Ya’ll* come back soon now, ya hear?

*Ok, I’ll try not to say ya’ll as much in my remaining posts, but no promises.

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Bean burgers

My favorite vegetarian recipe: Kidney bean burgers!

Kidney bean burger

So delicious, my friend Rosie introduced me to this recipe, she is a vegetarian and apparently found this via StumbleUpon or something silly like that. Made these while my sister was visiting since she is a vegetarian. [Also I am really bad at coming up with vegetarian meals, Morgan and I eat some form of chicken or ground beef pretty much every night. So while my sister was here, our meals were: Vegetarian lasagna, Bean and cheese burritos, Kidney bean burgers, Vegetarian chili and cornbread, and pho. I’ve never eaten that many beans in one week before, I could never be a vegetarian unless I learned to really love tofu or something.]

One major recommendation, double this recipe! It is supposed to make “5 burgers,” but I’d put it more at about 2! Other than that, I’ve only changed this recipe slightly. That blog looks like it has other great recipes too (and not all veggie), I plan to try some soon.

KIDNEY BEAN BURGERS

One 15-ounce can kidney beans, drained, rinsed and mashed well

1/4 cup pecans, finely diced

1/4 cup onion, finely diced

1 clove garlic, minced

1 egg

2 tablespoons flour

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon ketchup

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon yellow curry powder

1/4 teaspoon cumin

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

———-

In a large bowl combine the ingredients. Mix well and chill for 15 minutes.

Form into burgers and fry in a small amount of oil, or in a nonstick pan sprayed with vegetable cooking spray, over medium heat.

———-

xoxo, emma

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Pomanders

Want a simple Christmas craft to make your home smell delicious using just two ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen? Pomanders!

pomander

Just stick some cloves into an orange or other citrus fruit. I used a push pin first to make it easier to stick the cloves in. Fill the entire orange or create a pattern, it’s up to you. You can tie a ribbon around the fruit first to hang it on your tree, or make a few pomanders [displayed in a bowl with pine cones perhaps?]

Here’s a cute use of pomanders:

give thanks pomander

xoxo, emma

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Penne with creamy pumpkin sauce

So I don’t have a picture for this dinner but you will just have to believe me that you should drop your dinner plans and make this recipe right away.  From Martha Stewart Everyday Food, I bring you Penne with Creamy Pumpkin Sauce.

The pumpkin is perfect for fall (and in case you haven’t heard, the canned pumpkin crisis is over so no more crazy people selling buying it for $7 a can on eBay anymore).  Also it is delicious in this dish to have savory pumpkin flavor rather than sweet like a pie.

Don’t have a rosemary bush in your yard? I feel your pain because mine hardly qualifies as a bush, more like a rosemary stick.  Instead, the BF pulled over the car and convinced me to STEAL ROSEMARY FROM A NEIGHBOR’S YARD.  Seriously I feel guilty for some reason even though their bush was more like a rosemary tree than a rosemary bush.

Oh, and I used cream instead of half-and-half, because that’s what was in my fridge.  And rotini instead of penne….and red wine vinegar instead of white wine vinegar…and I don’t know the exact measurements I used because I’ve sort of given up measuring (except for baking of course).  But a recipe is meant to be a suggestion not a set of rules, no?

Anyway, enjoy! xoxo

Penne with Creamy Pumpkin Sauce

Canned pumpkin puree isn’t only good for pie; here, it becomes a creamy sauce for penne, topped with deliciously crunchy fried rosemary.

Prep: 10 minutes
Total: 30 minutes

Ingredients

Serves 4

  • 12 ounces penne rigate (ridged), or other short pasta
  • Coarse salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pure pumpkin puree
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, plus more for garnish (optional)

Directions

  1. Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Reserve 2 cups pasta water; drain pasta and set aside.
  2. In pasta pot, heat oil over medium. Add rosemary and fry, stirring, until starting to brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer rosemary to a paper towel, leaving oil in pot.
  3. Carefully (oil is hot and will spatter) add pumpkin puree, garlic, half-and-half, Parmesan, vinegar, red-pepper flakes, and 1 cup reserved pasta water to pot. Stir sauce until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Add pasta to sauce, and toss to coat. If sauce is too thick, add some reserved pasta water. Season generously with salt. Serve pasta sprinkled with fried rosemary and, if desired, more red-pepper flakes.

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How to make boba

I wanted to make my own boba tea/tapioca, and went to Fubonn on a whim.  Luckily they actually had an entire section of the pearls and even drink mixes.  If you don’t have an Asian grocery near you, they are available on Ebay.  The boba turned out great! Here’s what you’ll need:

Boba supplies

Tapioca pearls, they had black, white and multicolored at the store.  Of course I got multicolored.  I picked up a honeydew flavor drink mix as well.  And you can’t forget the chunky straws!

tapioca pearls

Boil 10 cups of water, then add in one cup of the pearls.  Give the pearls a gentle stir.  Right away they will rise to the top of the water.  When they do, cover them and boil for 5 minutes more.

tapioca pearls, done

After 5 minutes, take the pearls out and drain them.  Mix them with some simple syrup (1 cup white sugar, 1 cup brown sugar, 2 cups water.  Heat in a pot and remove from heat as soon as it boils.)  I think the simple syrup step is to keep them from sticking together.

Next, in a shaker combine: 2 ounces simple syrup, 2 tbs. drink powder, and 2 tbs. non-dairy creamer (I didn’t have any so I used 2 tbs. milk and it worked perfectly).  Add a few ice cubes and fill to the top with cold water.  Shake to combine, making sure the drink powder dissolves.

Spoon some finished tapiocas into a glass, and pour the liquid over it.

finished boba

And that’s it!  It looks (and tastes) so impressive but is really quite easy.  I will definitely pull this recipe out next time I have friends over.  Enjoy!

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