Friday, August 3, 2012

Meals for the Week of August 6, 2012

Why does summer have to fly by so quickly?  Didn't I just write a post about making summer-time snacks/lunches for when the kids are home?  Oh yes, I did, it's one of the last times I actually posted something here.  :/  What happens every summer is the my dear hubby works in education and is off during the month of July, so then everyone  in our house is home and my ability to just sit for hours at the computer researching and writing is limited.  I do cook, and this summer I've spent plenty of time on Pinterest courtesy of my iPhone app.  But the other day, I treated my family like a client and spent about 5 hours prepping and cooking some breakfast, snacks and meals because they are heading back to work and school and I wanted to get ahead of the game.  I made some granola, breakfast burritos,  more calzones like I mentioned in a previous post, white chicken enchiladas (on the list this week), a big batch of spaghetti sauce, and I prepped some thin carne asada style steak (except I marinated Filipino style) and put a pork tenderloin in a honey Dijon mustard marinade.  In two short weeks my life returns to controlled chaos of driving to school, Daisy Scouts and soccer practice, plus regular Personal Chef sessions.  Not to mention I must take time to get myself back to attending regular Mama Bootcamp sessions to keep myself healthy and sane.  The added layer to this is my oldest starts high school, so I'm no longer just rushing to get to one school, but two kids to two different schools.  And they are not close to each other.  So I have to get my act together and not just take care of clients, but take some time to plan and cook ahead for us.

I figured I should share some of the kitchen fun I have had this summer.  You can follow me on Instagram, elh1015, to see not just kitchen fun. 

My husband's birthday cake, inspired by Pinterest- chocolate cake, peanut butter buttercream frosting, chopped Reese's peanut butter cups.

Home made cinnamon raisin bread, recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day

Homemade Tortillas that my oldest and I made.  I'm going to use this recipe in my kid's cooking class this year.

This week I came up with some recipes that are seasonal using veggies that you may find on sale or be enjoying in large quantities from your (or your friend's) garden.  I also have some crock pot recipes that can keep you out of the kitchen as well as keep the house cool.

Meals for the Week of August 6, 2012

Cold Sesame Noodles with Shredded Chicken- We all liked this in my house and I liked that it was quick to fix and didn't heat up the kitchen too much. 

Healthy baked Chicken Nuggets- I make these for a client on a regular basis; the adults and kids like them.  I always just make a much larger amount than the recipe calls for, after they bake and cool I place them on a plate or sheet pan in the freezer, then after they are frozen, transfer them to a zipper storage bag.  You can just re-heat as needed.  

Easy Grilled Tri Tip- It’s been awhile I think since I shared this recipe, which is my own that was published on All Recipes.  The purpose of this recipe was a quick method for grilling tri tip since it’s sliced and marinated, then grilled.  You could use the marinade on any cut of steak you want. 

Sausage Stuffed Zucchini Boats-Need recipes for using your bounty of garden zucchini?  Here’s a great one.  Lean sausage and part skim mozzarella cheese, filling, but not too fat and heavy. 
Grilled Steak with Tomatoes and Scallions- Simple and easy steak recipe, grilling the tomatoes slightly just to warm and give them a little smoky flavor.

Heirloom Tomato Tart in Parmesan Crust- A lovely way to use the abundance of tomatoes ripening in your garden.  If you wanted this as a side dish to grilled chicken or fish, that would work nicely.  But it can be a main dish with a salad on the side.  You can cut some corners using a pre-made crust if you want and follow the recipe directions for baking it and sprinkling with parmesan cheese.  I highly recommend Trader Joe’s brand, it’s in their freezer section.  But the extra step in the recipe that has you remove some of the tomato juice really helps keep this from being soggy.

Crock Pot Thai Pork with Peanut Sauce- I love that she makes a case for why you should consider the crock pot more when cooking in the summer.  And it’s true, it certainly is easier than heating up the oven or stove or standing over a hot grill.  And this is a delicious shredded pork to serve over rice and with some steamed broccoli.  Perfect. 

Easy Skillet Topped Chili Macaroni- Much better than from a box, this is an easy from scratch recipe for a great kid-friendly meal.  You can use lean beef or ground turkey and whole grain pasta to make it a little lower in fat and higher in fiber. 

Slow Cooker Cashew Chicken- This is not one of those crock pot recipes where you leave it all day while at work, but its the sort of thing you could do on a weekend; get it all prepped, set it to cook and come back to it a few hours later. 

White Chicken Enchiladas- Really easy to make, doesn’t use a canned cream of chicken soup and you can freeze either baked to reheat or put in the freezer unbaked and then defrost and bake when you want to eat it. 

Honey Balsamic Green Beans- And here's a side dish for you this week.  I’ve used this combination on other veggies and never thought to use it with green beans.  It’s great! 

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