Monday, February 27, 2012

menu of the week

Sorry for the radio silence last week... my computer went from exhibiting minor symptoms of distress to literally falling apart. We're waiting on the arrival of a new fan and hinges so Matt can repair it, so for now I'm using his ten year old laptop but at least I'm back! A few highlights from the weekend before I share last week's menu:
- Our friends Matt & Kayla got engaged on Friday night - hooray!
- We shared a delicious meal with friends on Saturday night and learned that Ezra loves carrot soup. (Who knew British carrots have their very own website?)
- Yesterday I put together what I thought was an awesome outfit but when I went downstairs Matt told me that I looked like a "hobo grandma." Clearly he doesn't know a thing about mixing patterns. Just had to share that because I thought it was funny. (For those of you who are wondering, I wore a circle skirt with a large floral print, a cheetah print cardigan, black leggings, gray suede moccasins, and a wrinkled blue scarf).

So what did we eat last week? Some pretty tasty things. Check 'em out....
ginger and lentil soup - Ginger is a flavor I tend to shy away from. It's just a little too strong for me, but since I'm always encouraging Matt to try new flavors and give foods a second chance I felt I should take my own advice. I think this soup was extra good because Matt made it, not because he's a wonderful cook but because I didn't have to. We added lots of Gruyère, so how could it not be delicious?

let's eat with our fingers quesadillas - Another recipe from 100 Recipes Every Woman Should Know, this one was even better than the frugalista burritos we tried a few weeks ago. It was so simple to put together and the flavors were a lot more vibrant than I thought they would be. To recreate this meal, just chop and onion and a couple potatoes and sauté them in a little olive oil. Add some beans (I used about two cups of kidney) and continue to stir over medium heat. When you're ready to serve mix in some Monterey Jack (again with the cheese!) and wrap it all up in a tortilla. Serve with a dollop of sour cream.

black pepper pasta - This is a recipe for one of those nights when you forgot to defrost anything and you have next to nothing in the fridge. Boiling the pasta in chicken broth gives it a more substantial flavor to stand up against the bold taste of the pepper.

slow cooked sweet potato chili - Anything cooked in a crock pot is your friend because when 6:00 rolls around, dinner is done. In my case, it was done before I even woke up because Matt sweetly prepped all the ingredients before he went to work. Our house smelled spicy all day. In a good way. And of course, we added some cheddar when it was time to eat.

Italian wedding soup - Italian wedding soup is one of my favorites, but I must confess I had never made it before this week. I've had a recipe from Giada's Family Dinners for years but I was intimidated by the seventy-five mini meatballs it required. Silly, I know, so I overcame my fear and rolled them all up before church on Sunday morning. After that the rest was super simple - boil some broth, add the meatballs and chopped escarole, stir in some grated Parmigiano and eggs, season with salt and pepper, and you're done! And it was so so good. (I only used ground beef rather than a combination of beef and pork.)

P.S. Don't forget to enter my giveaway to celebrate the blog's second birthday! I've added a few more things to the goody bag - paper bunting and some twiggy pencils. You have until Wednesday to leave a comment.

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