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Showing posts from April, 2020

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We ordered Jimmy Johns and you can blame Fox New

So late yesterday afternoon Fox 32 here in Chicago requested to interview Justin from (name redacted) again, since Pritzker discussed the decontamination unit in his briefing. All well and good, except we spent the early evening pulling together a briefer, updated messaging, waiting with baited breath for the Zoom link to come through, etc. (Side note: shout-out to (name redacted) for being an absolute machine with briefers I'm requesting at literally a moment's notice all week!). We thought the interview would run at 5:45 so I watched the whole damn newscast, only to learn they recorded it and used it at 9pm! By the time I was finished I hadn't gotten to the store, we had no food, and ended up ordering delivery. So boooo Fox News!

Chipotle Night!

So we ran out of food here and I picked up Chipotle for dinner. I'll be back with something original though! Gotta survive the grocery stores after work tonight. Also I can still see that gif of the chicken attacking that kid as I'm typing this and I cannot stop laughing.

Pasta w/ Garlic-Butter Sauce

Made this one up last night because I needed a lighter alternative to the cream sauces I've been making lately. It sounds like it would be super-rich, but it's actually not!  Boil 1/2 lb of pasta, go for penne or farfalle, not a spaghetti-type noodle  Prep green beans (cut off the ends, chop into bite-size pieces) and dice up some zucchini. Peas (unfrozen) would also work well in this dish.  While the pasta is cooking, heat 5 tbsp of butter in a large pan, add 1-2 cloves of minced garlic and simmer on medium heat. Add 1 tbsp lemon juice.  Add in the veggies and stir, season with black pepper. You have to keep the heat on med-low so the butter doesn't brown, so this will take a little longer than it usually does to sautee veggies. But your pasta will take 10ish minutes to cook so that's plenty of time.  Once the pasta is cooked and drained, return it to the pot, then add the veggie and sauce mixture to the pot and stir to combine.    Serve topped with shred

Antipasti ed Insalata

After a calorie-soaked Saturday that included leftover pizza, enchiladas and beer, we decided to go light for Sunday dinner.  This is basically salad and appetizers, Italian style:  Slice up meats and cheeses; I went with ham, pepperoni and provolone.  For a salad, use red or green leaf lettuce as your base (iceberg is fine for sandwiches but for an actual salad, you can do better). I also use cucumbers, carrots and croutons.  Heat a couple loaves of bread in the oven and serve with 1/4 EVOO + 1-2 tbsp balsamic vinegar + crushed red pepper flakes as a dip. Salute!

Middle Eastern Veggie-Falafel Bowl

I honestly struggled with what to call this because there was so much thrown in. So I'm keeping it simple:  Make 1 cup of basmati rice Veggie prep:  1/2 bell pepper sliced into strips 1/4 onion also sliced 1 piece of celery diced 1 small potato diced into very small pieces Sautee the veggies in EVOO but start the potato first (give it about 3 minutes before adding the other veggies). Once all of the veggies are cooking, season with curry powder, turmeric and cumin (enough to turn them all yellow).  Heat one can of black beans in a separate pot. (Garbanzo beans are more along the lines of middle eastern food, but Bryce doesn't really like them so I went with black beans. Call if fusion.) Once the veggies are softened, set them aside and cover to keep warm. In the same pan, heat one can of light coconut milk, and begin adding red curry paste (use the fork method that I've described, about 3 forks' worth of paste).  Once the curry paste is mixed in,

The local Thai restaurant

Yesterday kicked my ass all over the place, plus we were low on food. So I ordered take out from the Thai restaurant here in town, which is seriously better than most Thai places in the city.  Right here in little 'ole Crystal Lake!  It's across town from where we live now, but it's down the street from our old house. Its first couple years, I literally kept that place in business.  In fact, after we moved here and stopped going so often, I went in one night to pick up food and the owner asked me where I'd gone!  Now we have leftovers for lunch today, and we're always down to support a local business.  Original cooking will return tomorrow morning now that I've done the grocery shopping!

Rose's Roasted Red Potatoes

We had a pork chop repeat last night as the main course, but this is quite possibly my favorite side dish: About 3 lbs red potatoes, wash and dice into bite-size pieces. Do not peel the skins. Heat your oven to 400 Put the diced potatoes in a large baking dish (13x9), and add about 1/4 cup of EVOO (enough to cover all of them but not soaking) Season with oregano (lots, like 2-3 tbsp), garlic powder, black pepper, and a little kosher salt. Stir that all around so they're evenly seasoned. Bake for about an hour and stir them a couple times during that hour. When the potatoes are soft and you can cut right through them, they're ready. Simple but delicious and works with nearly any chicken/steak/pork dish!

Strawberry-Banana Smoothie

Last night was another repeat dinner of my taco recipe (it's a fan favorite and super easy so it's heavily in the rotation). So, instead I thought I'd share my favorite breakfast smoothie recipe, which I am drinking as we speak! In a blender:  Take a couple handfuls of strawberries, cut off the tops and chop them into large pieces (probably about a cup or cup and a half) Cut up one banana (this is great for overripe ones)  Add 2 cups of vanilla yogurt (I use low fat or no fat...not a fan of whole milk yogurt, and you could use Greek yogurt if you like)  Throw in a couple ice cubes--I don't know why but ice cubes help the texture.  Blend all togther, and voila! Healthy easy breakfast that's surprisingly filling!

Pasta w/ Tomato Cream Sauce Reprise

I brought this one back last night since I love it and both the kids wanted pasta. The changes were I used mini-rigatoni this time (way better than spaghetti), and I had spinach to add to the veggies! Boil a large pot of water and cook whatever type pasta you prefer while you're doing the rest of this: Slice 1 bell pepper and about 1/2 an onion, sautee in EVOO, minced garlic and oregano. (Spinach is good in this one too.) When the veggies are softened, set aside and cover to keep warm. In the same pan, pour in a pint of heavy whipping cream, keep heat medium. Add a forkful at a time of tomato paste, you only need a little can. Whisk the tomato paste into the cream but use the fork, not an actual whisk (it'll get all gummed up in the whisk). Keep the fork kinda flat so you don't destroy your pan. Keep adding forkfuls at a time until you've used up the can of paste. Add the veggies and cooked pasta to the sauce, toss & serve! You can top it with some parmes


That's right, I ordered Chipotle for pick up last night! And it was delicious.  With (client name redacted) being crazy town there was no time for cooking, but I did make it to the store this morning so we'll be back on track tonight!