Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Tonight for dinner I boiled some shrimp with Old Bay Seasoning, which was nothing new. It got interesting when I decided to make some brown rice. I've mentioned before that I make boring rice, so this time I branched out. I got some saffron from a friend who went to Thailand awhile back, and it wasn't until I became a Penzey's addict that I learned how expensive it is. I added some of that, along with some minced garlic and some saffRAN, which apparently is different. I know that because it's yellow, and saffRON is red. Beyond that, I have no idea. All I know is that my rice was NOT BORING! Yeah!! I also tried an Italian veggie mix from Bird's Eye, which surprised me by having red peppers (which was not on the bag). Then we had an excellent fruit salad made of watermelon, raspberries, blueberries, pineapple, apples, and bananas. I picked up the watermelon at a roadside stand, and it is gooooood. Even Howie the Guniea Pig is enjoying the rind. I love summer, because of all the great fruit we get in Florida!

Now for some catch-up: last night's dinner. I made one of Mike's favorites, Meat Loaf Wellington. I love that recipe because it looks so fancy, but using the crescent rolls makes it so easy. I got both of the side dishes from the aforementioned roadside stand; green beans and corn, fresh off the cob. The sign at the stand said "candy corn," which I just couldn't pass up. Both tasted extremely fresh, and the corn was indeed very sweet. For dessert, I made the Best Ever Blueberry Pie. It really is the best ever! I wasn't able to pick any blueberries this year because it's been so dry, so I was glad to find some at a good price at Publix this week. We enjoyed our pie in our bathing suits, floating in the pool. Summer has now officially begun for me!! Doesn't that picture just make you drool? I'm going to the fridge to have a piece! [logs off quickly]

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Yesterday I tried a recipe from Kraft's Food and Family Magazine, Blueberry Cheese Rolls. They were very easy, and I'm enjoying one for breakfast as I type this. I think it would be good with any berry, but the blueberries were especially good, bursting in the mouth as you bite into them. Mine didn't come out quite as pretty as the picture in the magazine, but they look elegant; like they took a lot longer to make than they did. If you don't get Food and Family Magazine, I recommend that you try it. It's free, so the only thing is, you have to put up with shameless product plugs. I've tried many different recipes from there with good results.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Breakfast: Honey-Oat Quick Bread with Fruit Salad and Bacon

I wanted to share a new recipe with you guys that I found in Eating Well magazine. This Honey-Oat Quick Bread was yummy and healthy - a winner all around! I tried one slice with honey and one with apple butter, and both were very good. It was great toasted this morning, too. I love quick breads. Banana breads, beer breads...basically anything I don't have to knead. Plus, it features ingredients I usually have on hand. Paired with a little bacon and a fruit salad of bananas, apples, and strawberries from the freezer, we had a great breakfast on Sunday!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Burgers with Grilled Red Potatoes

Tonight I decided to see if I could make a whole meal on the grill, so I started with the obvious: hamburgers. Then I decided instead of the usual baked fries I make with burgers, I would try roasting some red potatoes in a basket. Next, some whole green beans from the freezer in a foil packet. They aren't in the picture because Mike didn't realize they started out frozen, so they had to go back on the grill. I even did dessert on the grill: grilled pineapple brushed with a mixture of brown sugar, Jack Daniels, and a little butter.

The verdict
I was pretty proud of myself for thinking of a whole meal done on the grill. It was pretty tasty, too. The pineapple was great; it was like dessert...but it was fruit! I give this meal 5 stars for taste and 4 stars for health.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Cornish Game Hen

On Monday I bought two Cornish Game Hens from the freezer section at Publix. One went right to the freezer at home, and the other one went into the fridge to start defrosting. This afternoon I stuffed the hen with some jalepeno pickled garlic that we got in California, then sprayed the outside with olive oil. That went into the toaster oven to bake (I found my miniature baking pan today!), and I put some potatoes on the stove to cook for mashed potatoes. We also had a steamed veggie mix from the freezer.

The verdict
The hen was good, but the garlic didn't impart as strong of a taste as I thought it would. I really like the pickled garlic we got! I think once I use it all up, I'm going to try my hand at making some myself. Oh, and I took a picture of the whole table so you could see the progress my mom and I made today. There's no clutter on my table! That in itself made for a great meal. I give this meal 4 out of 5 stars for taste and 3 and a half stars for taste.

I also tried my hand at making the Peach Melba Muffins from my friend Dee's blog. I made a few minor changes, mainly using a variety of berries instead of just raspberries. I also didn't use peach yogurt like the recipe called for. I needed 8 oz. total of yogurt, and the cartons I buy are 6 oz., so I used one carton of strawberry and a little of raspberry. Why, you ask? Because that's what I had.

These muffins were great! I definitely plan on making these again. I think next time I'll try to find a way to cut back on the sugar. I would like to give props to my mom for coming over today and helping me get my kitchen (among other places) in order. It was much more enjoyable to cook in my kitchen today. Thanks, mom!

Sunday, June 10, 2007

We got back from our vacation in Reno early this morning, and I wanted to show you the two dinners I cooked in our unit. After we got in on the first day, we went to the grocery store. The challenge was to buy ingredients to make two meals while having as little waste as possible. I decided to make chili one night and pizza the other night. That meant I could buy one jar of tomato sauce to use for both. I also got some mozzarella cheese to top the chili with and use up on the pizza. I made the pizza Hawaiian by buying a small can of pineapple and some lunchmeat, which doubled up to make sandwiches. I also got some stuff to make a salad with for both nights.

I was glad to have a kitchen in our unit. As good as the food was in Reno, it was nice to have something familiar those two nights.

For a journal of our vacation, visit my regular blog.