I've been fiending for apricots of late. Good timing considering that stone fruit are at their peak.
So here's what I made:
Check this out! Avocado Popsicles drizzled in Dark Chocolate! (Made specially by Christopher Hays.) So he has been exploring more in the kitchen lately and has been very interested in popsicles. The dots started when he spent some time with Gigi in NM. Now he comes home and wants to make different popsicles. These were interesting. The popsicle is not sweet but very creamy. In fact, I thought it could have been a lot sweeter for my taste, but the dark chocolate drizzle on point. It added a crunch and dessert-level feeling in which they really needed. Otherwise, I may have felt I was eating guac on a stick! I can't wait to see what he has in store for us next time.
My first thought when I saw Amy's food challenge of stone fruit for this week was I NEED to try to make my favorite cold beverage from "The Habit Burger" (located in CA). Peach nector, lime, ginger and basil.
I didn't really come anywhere close to getting it right, however I made some pretty tasty fruit smoothies.
Every this week I made several different variations of it in a smoothie..
Another new bit of info learned, thanks to this group – I now know what stone fruit is!! I was going to make another batch of this amazing peach salsa this week for the group, but I haven’t had time yet. I made it just recently for a get together and it was a big hit. The problem is that I didn’t get a great picture. 😊
How fantastic that we are able to revisit a food and manage to make 4 completely different dishes again.
And how fun that we have not one but two young people in the kitchen helping..
Until next week when purple is on the menu
Amy, Nikita, Georgia and Jen
I chose strawberries for our challenge this week because they were on sale at the grocery store! :) I turned $0.77 of strawberries into glorious strawberry muffins. I made 18 muffins and they disappeared in less than 24 hours. I wish I made more.
I omitted the almond extract, upped the strawberries to whatever I got from my 1lb package, substituted regular sugar for turbinado sugar since I didn’t have any, and I skipped the paper liners. Instead of 12 muffins per the recipe, it turned into 18. :)
I will definitely make these again.
I wonder if this food challenge was chosen because Wimbledon was this past week?
Anyway, I went super easy because it's hot and I'm lazy.
Yesterday was Nikita's birthday and today her husband and son treated her to homemade nutella crepes. Afterwards they took her on a surprise adventure. Looking forward to hearing all about it.
As for me. I made a yummy chicken, avocado, strawberry salad. Added some roasted beets and red onions. It was hovering very close to perfect for a hot summers evening
4 different ways to enjoy your strawberries (5 if we include Amy's wonderful suggestion to use the tops)
Until next week when we revisit stone fruit.
Jen, Amy, Nikita and Georgia
This week, I asked everyone to make their version of an All-American meal. What's funny about my story is how we stumbled upon the definition of American eats. While we were strolling around Sam's Club last weekend making sure to visit each Sampler Lady, we found ourselves sold on these amazing baked beans. They were sweet and smoky with chunks of beans and pork (or maybe it was hotdogs - not too sure). We also picked up some shredded smoke pork that you can just heat up in the oven. Now we bought these items not even thinking about the Saturday Bites challenge. I was actually going to move in a different direction with potato salad and coleslaw, but we made it home with our goodies and decided to start throwing dinner together after running a day of errands. I didn't want plain shredded pork, so I found a Homemade BBQ sauce recipe by The Food Network's The Neely's. I've watched them from time-to-time and know they LOVE BBQ, so their sauce MUST be amazing, right?! Right-o for sure! It took me 30 minutes to whip this sauce together and I already had ALL the ingredients. I put the sauce into little squirt bottles and we smothered our pork sandwiches in it. When we thought we didn't have enough sauce, we poured little side dipping dishes full of the sauce. And just like good ole American consumerism requires, we ate it all on paper plates because nobody wanted to do dishes. LOL! It was amazing and the leftovers were even better. I even cooked some smoked polska sausage later in the week with the same BBQ sauce. This recipe for BBQ sauce comes HIGHLY recommended. Enjoy!
When I think “All American,” I think of barbeque. I made one of my husband’s favorite foods this week – ribs. I like to use my instant pot for ribs since they turn out really tender in a short amount of time. The number of spices used in the recipe seems like overkill, but it turns out great (even if you forget one or two when making it).
The ribs go well with lots of different veggies as side dishes. My girls asked for green bean casserole.
Soooooo I found myself googling all American food. I was not impressed. I've decided to lean forward and get to the heart of the matter. Rather than an All American dish I decided that I wanted to celebrate American ingenuity. Because, face it, when an American is poor, stoned or incarcerated(or any combo of the three) they have the ability to create dishes that are sick af. A package of Ramen a tortilla and whatever is on hand becomes a county (jailhouse) burrito. I have friends.
To me one of the most ingenious(and tasty) American creations is the chopped cheese sandwich. It's a clever and cost efficient way of stretching ingredients. For both the origins and cult following of this beloved sammich read this New York Times article:
The recipe is as basic as you can get. Yes, use the American cheese! It works superbly here. I tend to play around with the seasoning. This time I used garlic powder and Penzey's Chicago Steak Seasoning. Whatever suits your palate.
There are a multitude of recipes for chopped cheese sandwiches all over and some decided to complicate this humble sandwich. If that's your gig then more power to you. However it is to my understanding that the following link is the closest to the real deal. I'd rather go for the authentic Bronx based recipe. I can be a purist at times.
And use the American cheese! Don't be an Americant!
I totally agree with Jen.. When it comes to all American food my first thought is bbq'd or grilled food. (We like grillin)
Apparently so does the husband. I came home from work one evening and he had the most wonderful meal made for me. All grilled. this was his first time using the grill since we got it several years ago. And he did an amazing job.
Veggies - onions, tomatoes and zucchini,
Sweet potato (yes, also grilled to perfection)
I think the only seasoning he used on any of it was salt and pepper.
He also made some blueberry lemonade. (I added a splash of vodka in it)
It was perhaps the nicest meal I've had in a long while.
I love how each culture has very distinct food that represent who they are.
Until next week,
Nikita, Jen, Amy and Georgia
So this week was my choice and as per my norm asked the husband if there was anything in particular he's like to see on the menu this week. His response was soft cheese.
Months before we moved (after we made the decision to move back) Randy made reservations at our favorite little French restaurant on Old Town Albuquerque called Le Crepe Michel.
Our appetizer was brie en croute served with jam and a salad.
Delicious, just as I remembered
This is called Real.Life. I started a new job last week, and we are still adjusting to the new hours as a family. Technically, you'd say my hours shifted in our favor because now I work the normal Monday -Friday 8am-5pm routine. The difference is the drive. Now I drive an hour each day which means I have to leave earlier in the morning; this time used to be carved out to make dinner for the family. So on Sunday, we decided to pull together some Freezer Casseroles to throw in the oven. I incorporated an amazing recipe for Cream Cheese Mashed Potatoes to top two beautiful Shepherd's Pies, and I still had left over taters to reheat as a side. I even cleaned out the ole freezer fortress that may have had one or two unidentifiable meats from last year! While the Shepherd's Pie was delish, we were able to whip out a Chicken & Rice Casserole Friday night when we had company over. When I apologized for heating up a "backup meal", he said "Wow, you're backup meal is an amazing casserole when my backup is frozen chicken nuggets."
I went with cottage cheese for the “soft cheese” challenge this week. I usually eat cottage cheese plain or topped with raisins, so it was fun finding some other ways to eat it via Google. I settled on a recipe that uses orzo and peas since I already had those on hand as well. I made this dish for a lunch while my hubby was at work, and both daughters approved. They’re not fans of cottage cheese normally either! I didn’t bother offering some to my husband because he scrunches up his face when cottage cheese is mentioned. :)
This was an easy one! I had the ingredients on hand. I made this on July 4, so I topped it with the berries to make it more patriotic.
So I made ricotta cheese blintzes and here's a good recipe for them. I used Splenda though...so...
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