Somehow work got pretty nutty in May so it feels like a bit of a blur. I had a good month in the kitchen for blogged foods. Weeknight foods I’ve been really minimal to allow us to get outside after work, before dinner.
One of my favs was this really amazing breakfast sandwich with roasted tomatoes. I loved this as a stretch beyond the norm.
I made some broccoli & cheddar puff pastry pinwheels that couldn’t have been easier.
Quick! Make this meatloaf burger before Independence day arrives. Brown sugar ketchup and crispy fried onions are perfect.
June is the end of the fiscal year at work so it’ll be 100 mph. June is also Mr. J’s birthday which means: birthday burger!! Here was last year’s birthday burger and the rundown of previous ones. I’ve flagged 2 that I’ll decide between. Also flag day is coming up. Such a strange holiday but our town LOVES flag day. The parade is huge and goes right down the end of our street.
The Baby Girl:
She’s 9 months old! She tried shrimp and loved it – pancakes, green beans, and blueberries are also favs. She is suddenly not as into bottles so hopefully that doesn’t continue to be a thing. I love seeing her eat all the things. She’s close to 17 pounds and ohh-so-happy. Baby girl is surfing around and will take about a step without holding on. Splashing in the tub is her fav so we think she’ll love the pool.
The Little Boy:
He looooves soccer. We missed the town soccer timing so he’s at a community one and it has been great. I only hoped he’d participate and he definitely does! It is mostly skills and that’s good for them since they each have a ball. I love how much he can talk about. He’s sweetly reflective and has an impressive memory. We have been reading a ton and finding some really fun library ones. He’s had a really fantastic time at daycare and doing so well behaved. I’m proud of him.
Year of ___ decluttering/minimizing/organizing: My sis is having a yard sale so I’m passing off baby stuff! No more baby tub, baby bouncer, tiny bottles etc.
Feeding Littles: I shared this farro bowl and the Meatloaf Burger.
Work on advanced food prepping: I’ve given myself the headstart so planning my ideas for the week with options that are quick has been my success.
What I’m reading: I read Grapes of Wrath for bookclub and slogged my way through it. Then I read The Great Alone and couldn’t put it down.
What I’m watching: We didn’t watch many movies and will be very sad when we finish Schitt’s Creek.
I liiiive for breakfast sandwiches because I love the perfect bite that has some of everything. This one is not-your-average breakfast sandwich. It was almost an open-faced but the brioche loaf cost twice as much as the rolls so ta-da! The loaded toast became a sandwich! The roasted tomatoes are amazing and a perfect juicy pop to give this a little something special for breakfast.
Roasted Tomato and Bacon Breakfast Sandwich on Brioche
Ingredients: (for 2)
2 cups grape or cherry tomatoes
1 small white onion
4 slices of bacon
2 brioche rolls (or 2 slices brioche bread or challah)
Roast the tomatoes and onions in a drizzle of olive oil for about 15 minutes at 400-degrees until they pop and get some color. Give them a little shake every few minutes for even cooking.
Chop the bacon and pan fry until crisp and then remove and let drain on a paper towel.
Slice the rolls and gently toast a little in the oven- just 5 minutes to keep them from getting soggy.
Pan fry the eggs sunny side up or over-easy, as you like.
Assemble the sandwiches with the rolls, tomatoes on each bottom roll, the eggs and top with bacon.
The brioche rolls are soft, puffy, and bordering on sweet- the French version of challah. The roasted tomato might be my new favorite breakfast element! I normally would head to a bacon, egg, and cheese, but this I loved as a stretch for myself.
Anything inside puff pastry is delicious (and easy) but broccoli and cheddar are such an ideal match. I roasted the broccoli for those delicious roasty bits with some gooey cheddar. Yum. These were some lunches for me and I think they’d be a good brunch addition or a heavy app.
Broccoli & Cheddar Pinwheels
1 sheet of puff pastry (sold in a tube by crescent rolls or folded frozen by pie crust)
1 large broccoli head
~1/4 cup cream cheese
1 cup shredded cheddar
1 teaspoon Mushroom Umami seasoning (optional)
Salt & pepper
(Defrost the puff pastry if frozen, or open to get to room temperature if using refrigerated dough)
Preheat the oven to 400-degrees.
Chop the broccoli into florets. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for ~10-15 minutes- until a little brown and toasted and cooked through.
While the broccoli roasts, roll out the dough. Spread cream cheese onto the dough, sprinkle cheddar on top, and add broccoli. Sprinkle with umami seasoning (if using).
Roll up keeping the roll really compact.
Cut into 2 inch slices using a sharp or serrated knife to not squish the roll too much.
Place onto a baking sheet sprayed with non-stick spray.
Bake for 12-15 minutes, or start with the timing and temperature on the package. Add more time if needed to cook to golden brown.
I loved these. The roasty broccoli is perfect and gives a nuttiness. They puff a bit while baking but aren’t enormous. I packed 2 to be lunch at work with some salad. Do not pack if microwaving these beauties. That would destroy all the crunch and microwaved broccoli is not good. Broccoli and cheddar puff pastry pinwheels neeeed to be baked or toasted to warm up. These could easily be dinner alongside something else or these would be great as an appetizer too!
A pork shoulder in the crockpot is like the gift that keeps on giving. I’d say definitively that pulled pork is the best of any leftovers, hands down. I make it once in the crockpot and have about 6 servings. We had some as tacos and then I wanted to give it another spin with a bottle of fig and balsamic dressing from a Trader Joe’s haul. A little fig jam + a little balsamic vinegar would reach the same flavors without that exact dressing too!
I like the sweet but vinegary yet smoky pork on crusty ciabatta but any roll will do! My preschooler got a slider bun since that’s sometimes a better size for him and he’d be more likely to eat all the bread skipping the pork unless sized well. I made some sweet potato tots and called it dinner. Here’s the Balsamic & Fig dressing I used but I’m including a quick fix for just a single use without buying it!
Balsamic + Fig Pork Sandwiches
Ingredients (for ~4)
1 1/2 – 2 cups pulled pork (~8oz, cooked)
1/2 cup Balsamic & Fig Dressing (or 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, 1/4 cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons fig jam whisked together)
2 cups arugula
1-2 teaspoons olive oil
Preheat the oven to 300-degrees.
Mix the pork and some of the balsamic & fig dressing together gently. Taste and add more if needed.
Warm the pork either in the microwave, or in a skillet.
Toast the rolls in the oven for about 5 minutes, until warmed through and just lightly toasted.
Toss the arugula in the olive oil until dressed and lay onto the bottom buns.
Top with pork and a drizzle of dressing more.
I liked this for a different twist on pork! If you buy fig jam, it is fantastic with a salty cheese (thus why it is sometimes sold near the cheeses) but it is also great for a Fig & Prosciutto Panini, or on pizza!
Mr. J loves meatloaf so this was inspired for him! It was a perfect early-spring burger! There’s a bit of a decadence to this one- it isn’t light or subtle. It is juicy and flavored with caramelized onions and topped with a brown sugar ketchup, arugula, and crispy fried onions.
Ingredients: (for 2)
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1/2 pound ground pork
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 teaspoon brown sugar
~3/4 cup fried onions
Sautee the onions in a little olive oil over low heat until golden and caramelized.
Mix together the ground pork, onion, breadcrumbs, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce and egg.
Preheat the grill or warm a cast iron skillet.
Form into patties.
Cook until the middle reaches 150-degrees. Use a meat thermometer to ensure it doesn’t over cook!
While the burger cooks, mix up the ketchup and brown sugar.
In a dry skillet, fry the fried onions for about 2 minutes until toasted.
Serve the burgers with arugula, brown-sugar ketchup, and crispy onions.
We all liked this one! The preschooler eats a slider-sized burger and liked it. He started with his crunchy onions on the side but added them after eating a few – I think he wasn’t quite sure what they were. We all liked was how juicy this was! We had this with our fav broccoli salad.
Mix everything and form the patties in advance for a faster weeknight dinner. Momma was raving about burgers? tacos? something she used “meatloaf” mix for. That’d be great for this burger too!