Friday, December 25, 2009

Today's Special: Dec. 20-26th

First of all, I know I've said this before, but EatingWell is my new favorite website for recipes. I don't know how it's possible that they've come up with so many awesome recipes that are fast and easy. Not only that, but almost everything I've made tastes so good! And it's healthy! I've been consciously trying to watch my daily calories and I swear since I started using the Eatingwell website I've not only eaten the best food I've had in a while, but I'm eating a lot healthier too. Seth has lost over 10 pounds without even trying! The only hard thing with using these recipes is sticking to the suggested serving size because the food is so good. I supplement all the meals I've made with lots of vegetables instead of having the main dish the only thing on my plate. Plus if I'm diligent in dividing up the meal into the suggested portions, I get leftovers!

Sunday: Sesame-Orange Shrimp with Brown Rice & Sugar Snap Peas- New Recipe. This turned out really good, probably one of the better Asian-y type meals I've made for awhile (unless you count the peanut noodles from last week...). I used Minute Brown Rice instead of the regular stuff because I wanted to try it to see if it was any good. Fortunately I couldn't tell the difference between it and the normal stuff and it took 10 minutes to cook instead of close to an hour like usual. I'll probably keep buying it. I was also excited to find that I had a spare bag of sugar snap peas in the freezer. They went great with this. I'm definitely buying more of those this week. So yeah, this whole meal took about 15-20 minutes.

Monday: Salmon with Pepita-Lime Butter and Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Hazelnut Brown Butter- New Recipes. I liked both of these recipes. The lime in the salmon recipe was pretty strong, but not necessarily in a bad way. I just don't think it paired well with the brussels sprouts I chose. I don't know if I'll make this exact recipe again just because the pepitas aren't exactly the easiest thing to find (had to pick them out of a trail mix). Oh, and I've started keeping frozen salmon fillets in the freezer. They're pretty cheap and a good staple for a quick dinner.

I liked the brussels sprouts recipe the best. I used almonds instead of hazelnuts because that's all I had. I also just used some unthawed frozen sprouts instead of fresh ones. Seth said they were "too dry" but as I've mentioned before, he's got a dry food complex. I'd make them again.

Tuesday: Steak Diane with Creamy Mashed Cauliflower- New Recipes. Both of these recipes turned out really well. Not a super fast dinner, but not too bad... under an hour. I used boneless ribeye steaks & portobello & regular button mushrooms for the Steak Diane. The mashed cauliflower was better than expected, although next time I think I'll cut back on the amount of liquid I add. Seth, who as I've mentioned before is a self-proclaimed cauliflower hater, LOVED this. He ate all the leftovers. He's liked two of the cauliflower recipes I've made recently... I think that's enough to make him a cauliflower enthusiast.

Wednesday: (Kelly's Chili)- This is my go-to chili recipe. I made a double batch of this for a Christmas lunch at work (I work with a bunch of men who don't cook stuff) and everybody told me how good it was. It was the first thing to disappear and I swear they just about licked the crockpots clean. I used 3 jalapenos (3 for one batch- 6 for the double batch) and omitted the brown sugar (makes it too sweet) and mushrooms (weird for chili). Seth was disappointed there was none left for him. This might get on the menu again next week.

This picture doesn't do the chili justice. It looked way better in real life.

Thursday: Christmas Eve Party- I brought  Scalloped Potatoes from America's Test Kitchen. It was a new recipe and it turned out really good. If you're going to make these, I'd suggest cooking the potatoes all the way through in the pot before the final bake.

Friday: Waffles with Bananas & Pecans- I made these for breakfast on Christmas morning. It's one of my favorites. Dad seemed to really like them too. Glad I made extra :)

Bonus Recipe: Whatever Floats Your Boat Brownies- I made these for our Cousin Christmas Party this year. I think the name is really dumb, but the brownies rock so I don't really care. I don't like to add a ton of stuff to my brownies. This time I doubled the recipe and added about a cup of Ghiradelli Bittersweet Chocolate Chips. I've also made them with peanut butter chips which were good as well. Just add a scoop of vanilla icecream on top and some hot fudge to make it even better!

These look really dark because I used dark chocolate cocoa... they're not burnt, I swear.

p.s. It's really hard to take appetizing photos of food. Those cookbook & food magazine photographers are geniuses.  Maybe I just need more hand models to hold forks. Or maybe I should just use fake food.


heidi said...

Paul would kill for those brownies! Well, maybe not kill... perhaps, sprint across a large room, pushing me (gently) out of the way to get to them.

I thought everything looked quite appetizing! Well--except the chili. But that's not because of the picture. The photo's great, I just haven't eaten beef in years, so the idea is kinda gross.

You've got me interested in trying some Eating Well recipes... I LOVE THE IDEA OF LOSING TEN POUNDS WITHOUT TRYING!

Wish I'd been there for those Xmas Waffles.


p.s. Merry Xmas!!

Rachel said...

Karen, You are perhaps the coolest human being on the planet. That is all.

Holly said...

I just want to say that your menu/food posts have inspired me. I'm not much of a cook, but I want to get into it now. Not only do I want to see how this kitchen room works, but I want to eat better and expand my horizons. I have added Eating Well to my favorites!

And yes, food photos are TOUGH!