I was home to make lunch and was thinking about Shrimp Scampi but it seemed a bit much for lunch so I made it into a flatbread with a scampi-like sauce. I loved it and it was the perfect fit for a surprisingly quick lunch with the flavors without messing with dough or even boiling water. Cooking the shrimp and making the sauce in that same pan makes for a lot of flavor and was just so easy.
1 garlic naan
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup clam juice
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 teaspoon garlic
cracked black pepper & salt
1 teaspoon chopped chives
~2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
1 teaspoon thyme
Toast the flatbread.
In a skillet over medium heat, melt the butter and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Cook and flip once and cook for a few minutes per side.
Remove the shrimp and add in the clam juice, lemon juice, mustard, & garlic.
Whisk and bring to a low simmer. Add in more black pepper and chives.
Spread the sauce onto the naan and top with Parmesan and shrimp.
Sprinkle with the thyme and return to the oven for another few minutes.
The sauce was veryyy flavorful. The clam juice, lemon juice, dijon, and garlic are fo-real. For pasta I’d probably save a bit of the starchy water to thin it out a little. I was so glad I made this one & got the flavor I was thinking about. It was easy to make a single serving and was a great reminder how quickly some classic flavors can take shape.
I took my Mom for a birthday breakfast at a spot between us and knew I couldn’t turn down their breakfast sandwich special. It was on Texas toast which seemed so fun! I kept these quite simple as egg & cheese for a meat-less weeknight dinner with some tots in the toaster oven. I’d totally make these bfast sandwiches again and load them up with tomato, bacon, spinach, or whatever.
Ingredients: (per sandwich)
2 pieces of Texas toast
1 slice cheddar
(add in bacon/sausage/spinach/sliced tomato/etc)
Toast the Texas toast according to the package.
Fry and egg. Flip it and add the cheese. Reduce the heat and cover with a pot cover to melt.
I like the yolk to run and this doughy toast is perfect to soak it all up. Tots in the toaster oven meant dinner was QUICK and didn’t heat up the whole house. The little one gobbled some up for his 2nd dinner. The babe is a carb-lover so he’d be happy with bites of Texas Toast the next time I toast up the remaining pieces. One would be plenty so an open-faced one would be nice too.
All of a sudden it was Independence Day. Now all of a sudden it is August. I’m so ready for the heat to be over but I hate to rush through any season. I truly didn’t cook much.
One of my fav’s this month was this peanut sesame sauce for noodles
And the little one would definitely agree. He was slurping them up while we were eating after already having dinner.
Also, summer means fresh sides and this pineapple, cucumber, and mint salad was sooo refreshing.
Also, don’t miss the Californian Burger with In-N-Out Sauce, avocado, and lots of herbs.
The Little One:
He is speaking so much more! He has so many thoughts and feelings. He eats sooo much! His favorites are fruit, cheese, and whatever I’m eating. He was really into pulled pork I made and he loooves long spaghetti. In August we’ll have a trip to the beach and he’s going to have a blast.
This Year’s Goals:
The Year of the: Seasonal Decor: I got an awesome watermelon welcome mat. love it.
do something a different way:
drink more water: yes, that might be the only good thing about this heat
make more interesting side dishes: yes, I made maple bacon creamed corn which was delectable.
cook more soups & sauces: Ehh. Maybe the condiment for In-N-Out sauce counts?
watch more movies: we watched Room
make working out a higher priority: Running has been going pretty well a few times a week. I’m up to 2 miles.
This salad served to clients at work made me want to make it ASAP. I love fresh pineapple and since the little one will always eat cucumbers, it means we always have some around. My mint plants are going gang-busters so poof! This salad was born. I planned to make pulled pork int he crockpot so this was perfect alongside it! I also would definitely chop it up more and use it as a relish. Yum!
1/2 cucumber, mostly pealed
1 cup fresh pineapple
8-10 mint leaves
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon olive oil
Chop the cucumber & seed, if necessary. Chop pineapple, shallot, and mint. Add it all to a bowl.
Add in the lime juice & olive oil. Toss well.
Refrigerate until serving, or serve immediately.
I thought this was perfect with the pork. I was so glad to have something zippy and fresh. This salad was so fast to throw together. The pork cooked all day in the crockpot and it was the fastest dinner to get together. Uhh it was just. so. ideal on a hot hot hot night. The leftover pork will be frozen and probably will go inside tacos. I’d really love this cuke & pineapple all diced up as a relish on a taco or sandwich.
Seriously, make this for your next BBQ and everyone will appreciate this cool, sweet, light, refreshing salad.
I road tested this pasta salad out and turned it into a meal by making it a vehicle for taco salads. It features flavors of a margarita, lime, with a touch of salt. I heard a tip of tossing the pasta in vinegar while it cools so I wanted to try it out. I think it works a bit, I don’t know that is changes the pasta salad to out of this world, but it totally has more flavor than many run-of-the-mill pasta salads.
1/2 pound rotini pasta
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
1/3 cup margarita mix
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tomato chopped
1 cup roasted corn
Green onions, chopped
fresh lime squeezed & zested (optional)
Boil the pasta and drain then toss with the apple cider vinegar. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before dressing it.
Whisk together the mayo, sour cream, margarita mix, chili powder, and salt.
If the pasta hasn’t completely chilled, then cover the dressing and mix later. If the pasta has already been chilled, then toss in the dressing.
Add in the veggies and herbs.
I think this would be great at a BBQ. I think it could have had more lime-ness. Next time I’ll juice a lime and zest it up. We topped them with taco-salad toppings like taco meat, avocado, and salsa. It was great for a bit of change from the usual taco salad. I used up some taco meat from the freezer and it involved very minimal cooking…many birds, one stone!
I know. Long time no see. I honestly haven’t cooked anything worth blogging. I’ve been capitalizing on the fast-cooking, low-oven use dinners that can be on the table fast and easy. There are always a few burgers on my list and I threw this one together to feature avocado, lots of herbs, and a zippy sauce like In-N-Out. Let’s preface with the fact that I’ve never been to In-N-Out but apparently the sauce is pretty fab and there are 1,000 versions so I whipped one up.
Our herb garden is going hard-core so I chopped up a whole bunch for these to keep the burgers feeling fresh. The sterotypical choice would be avocado, red onion, and sprouts but I’m not so into sprouts and I really wanted to pickle some red onions, but not enough to make a trip to the grocery store just for those.
1/4 cup mayo
1 tablespoon sour cream
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 teaspoon yellow mustard
1 teaspoon relish
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
2 burger rolls
~1/2 pound ground meat (I used pork, Mr. J used beef)
1/2 white onion
1 tablespoon fresh herbs chopped each (I used chives, lemon thyme, oregano, & par-cel)
2 slices white cheddar
Mix together the sauce: mayo, sour cream, yellow mustard, relish, vinegar, wocestershire sauce, lemon juice, salt & pepper. Then let it hang in the fridge until serving.
Chop the onion & herbs and add to the meat with some salt & pepper.
Form into patties and preheat the grill or grill pan.
Serve the burgers with lettuce, avocado, and plenty of sauce!
These were great. They were totally herby and the sharp cheddar was a good contrast to the sweet almost-thousand-island-dressing. I liked how much flavor the burgers had and I love the slight crunch onion still has while cooking mixed into the burger.
I’ve been working on some favors/parting gifts for some of my summer work events with a foodie crowd and was just so jazzed about them that I a) want to be a Pinterest-aficionado in my personal life and b) want to host all the food themed parties! Until either one happens, here are some favorites should you be in the market for a hostess gift, a party favor, or a consumable treat!
Infused sea salts:
I saw so many out there if you’re looking to purchase them already to give: This sampler looks great to tie a Thank You note to & let guests guests choose their own flavor!
I also totally want to make my own for personal use. Pinterest seems to think it is super easy…we’ll see how THAT goes. Sea Salt + dried herbs from my garden seems pretty fun to me! Can I dry my own herbs? We shall see! They’re flourishing so I might tackle it!
I’m giving grill rub out at 2 work events this summer. Because of the quantities, I got fun tiny tins & baggies for packaging of the house rub Chef uses on meat, fish, and vegetables. There are tons of recipes that are super cheap to make yourself (versus buying pre-made rub). Measuring & mixing dried herbs seems pretty foolproof!
My co-worker made these chocolate dipped shortbread cookies for a Bridal Tea Party. Sooo cute! I’m not really a baker, but what a lovely touch if you are baking inclined!
Mr. J’s birthday present included a “year of snacks/treats”. June’s theme was “hot & cold” which translated to ice cream sundae toppings of sea-salt caramel sauce, hot fudge, sprinkles, cherries, whipped cream, etc. July was “shareable” and I made loaded waffle fries that we enjoyed for dinner one night. I looove the gift of food!
Happy eating! Maybe this is the nudge I need to whip up some of my own BBQ rubs & spice mixes.
Theeeese a a few of my favorite things…
I found some frozen roasted chicken in the freezer and decided it would fare best if cooked and would be perfect in a calzone. Add my fav flavors, and thus, a meal is born. I used roasted chicken, crispy bacon, chopped tomato, alfredo sauce, ranch seasoning, and mozzarella. I felt like a rockstar to prep this 75% of the way the night before and just finish it before serving. Boo-yah.
2 cups roasted chicken
3 strips of bacon
1 1/2 cups mozzarella (mine was a mix of fresh & shredded)
3 tbs dried ranch seasoning
1 cup alfredo sauce
1 small tomato, diced
Preheat the oven & pizza stone (if using one) to 400-degrees.
Pan fry the bacon until crispy.
Warm the chicken in a medium pan over low heat and add 1 tablespoon of the ranch seasoning.
Lay the dough onto the pan or pizza stone, off center, for the filling to go on the bottom and for the rest to fold over.
Add chicken, tomatoes, cheese, alfredo, and ranch seasoning.
Then repeat the layers making sure to get the filling all the way to the ends & edges.
Fold the rest of the dough over the filling and pinch to close. Press down slightly to push the filling throughout the inside. Cut a few slits into the top to vent.
Bake 30 minutes until browned and crisped.
Serve and enjoy!
I knew we’d love this. What’s not to love? It was a perfect use for some leftover roasted chicken from the freezer (also the dough and bacon came from the freezer too). It was equally perfect that I prepped it the night before when I didn’t have to rush. I cooked it for about 20 minutes that night and just 15 minutes to serve. Dinner time is such a race against the clock and it was really nice to have this pretty ready. #winning
‘What I Ate’ is a series of posts for so-easy-this-doesn’t-need-a-recipe but I’m sharing with you for the idea or inspiration.
I totally didn’t make this up by any means but there are lots of recipes out there. This is great warm or cold and for a very “pantry” dinner it is per-fect for those too-hot-to-be-creative or meals on a budget or what-the-heck-is-for-dinner meals. I wasn’t going to blog it, because hello, I’m sure you’ve seen this before or can find it 1,000 places. Every time I make something new and decide not to blog it I regret it. So, here’s a blogged the minute before taking a bite:
I mixed it right in the bowl I served it in. This is real life. Whisk together the sauce and mess with the ratios to your taste. I used this recipe to start with. I had to share it because it was tasty and we ate every last noodle and the little guy, who was finishing dinner gobbled up a bunch of this!
tiny bit of sriracha
sesame seeds & green onion to garnish
Boil salted water for the pasta.
Whisk together peanut butter, soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, ginger, garlic, and sriracha.
Cook the pasta to al dente.
Mix most of the sauce into the pasta. Toss and add remaining sauce.
It was mild but additive. Interesting but comforting. Silky but with a small crunch. So good. I used black sesame seeds I recently re-descovered from sis’ trip to Japan a while back. I’d have loved sliced cucumber, chopped peanuts, and edemame on the side. Tonight it was just this and that was lovely.
I will absolutely make this again to munch with Mr. J while we watch the little one slurp long noodles beaming with pride when the whole thing makes it into his mouth.
I was totally inspired by this lunch-lady-dude on Next Food Network Star when he made maple bacon creamed corn to top with a crab cake. I wish it were time for local fresh corn, but we’re not quite there yet. Instead, this is the snazziest freezer-side-dish ever.
We grilled some chicken to serve over this sweet and smokey creamed corn. I couldn’t believe it…the little one gobbled almost a whole chicken thigh! He tends to choose the fruits/veggies/carbs over chicken but we just keep serving it. He had some regular corn and some of this maple bacon creamed corn.
The creamed corn took the same amount of time to cook as the chicken. Perfect!
2 slices of bacon
1/2 yellow onion
2 tablespoons butter
2 1/2 cups corn
3 tablesoons of water
1/3 cup milk or cream
2 tbs maple syrup
Pan fry the bacon.
While the bacon is cooking, chop the onion and add the onion pieces and butter to a heavy pan over medium-high heat. Let the onions cook until soft & translucent ~8 minutes.
Add in the corn (mine was frozen), the water, syrup, and the milk.
Bring to a simmer and cook for about 5-10 minutes.
If using frozen corn, remove about 1/3 – 1/2 and blend or food process it a little bit. Break it down a bit without totally obliterating it. Fresh corn will likely break down a bit on is own.
Add that back in, stir, and then add in the crispy bacon.
Stir while cooking another minute or two. Serve and enjoy!
I loved the sweet maple-y bacon flavors with spiced grilled chicken. It was a quick & unusual side dish for us with some pretty easy grilled chicken thighs. I like a new thing to go with something hands-off/no-stress/straightforward other foods. It would have been ideal to have a sharp & peppery arugula salad with this, but this was what we could make happen. This family dinner outside was glorious.