Grilled Chicken with Bok Choi

The weather last week was a total anomaly.  Seriously, it was in the 70’s all week.  Most days the sun was shining.  It felt more like spring than winter.  I am waiting for the other shoe to drop, I just know mother nature is going to drop a blizzard on us when we least expect it.   Anyway….I decided not to look a gift horse in the mouth and took the opportunity to grill out doors, we even ATE outside one night last week, whoo hoo!

chx-with-bok-choy

I marinated boneless skinless chicken in a sesame ginger marinade, then grilled it.  While that was cooking I made a batch of white rice and quickly sauteed up some bok choi in a little of the same marinade.  It was delicious.  Quick, healthy, and so so satisfying!

I know global warming is a bad thing for the planet, but I have to tell you, I really enjoyed our weather the last few days.

Beef….

Is what I did for Thanksgiving!  This year it was just the hubby and I for dinner.  Our niece has a big family Thanksgiving meal at her house on the Saturday after Turkey Day so I knew we would be having turkey.  It gave me a chance to change things up a bit.

t-day-menu

Between my work schedule and the husbands travel schedule, I haven’t been spending as much time in the kitchen as I like.  I find it very therapeutic, so I took the opportunity to spend the entire day in the kitchen on Thanksgiving.   We started with bacon and homemade buttermilk waffles.

Because honestly, a day that starts with bacon is ALWAYS a good day in my book!  For lunch, I made a pot of pasta fagioli soup and paired it with a good old grilled ham and cheese sandwich.

soup-and-sammie

Late afternoon, I put out a plate of cheese and crostini, I found a really awesomely sharp cheddar and a creamy brie.  It was a perfect little bit to get us through the second football game of the day.

Finally, it was time for dinner.  Our first course was homemade pumpkin ravioli.  I made the filling in the morning and just before dinner, I made the dough.  I picked up a ravioli maker from Williams Sonoma and it made my life so much easier.  That and the pasta rolling attachment for my kitchen aid meant I went from a ball of dough to actual ravioli in under twenty minutes!

I made a very simple cream sauce, butter, cream and Parmesan cheese for the ravioli, they were amazing.  I can’t wait to make them again!

For dinner, we grilled beef tenderloin steaks and asparagus, and I made twice baked potatoes. I even made homemade bread using my sour dough starter, I am telling you, I was in the kitchen ALL DAY LONG, and I loved it!

It is always good to end the day on a sweet note, neither the hubby or I are big fans of pie, so I made a caramel apple cheesecake instead.  It was AWESOME!

 

It was a very relaxing, enjoyable day, which I think we both needed and for which I was truly grateful.

Beef Tenderloin

I picked up a very small beef tenderloin from the grocery store on my way home.  I have been craving beef and we needed a meal that didn’t make many leftovers since the hubby was not going to be home for a few days.

tenderloin

The hubby grilled the meat outside while I took care of boiling the potatoes and the vegetables.   It was a rather simple meal, and a bit boring looking on the plate, but it tasted SOOOOOO GOOD!  Nothing can soothe the soul quite as much a lovely, tender, juicy piece of beef.  Add it some mashed potatoes and all is right with the world.

BBQ Pork Chops

The hubby has been craving BBQ pork chops for dinner and being the good wife that I am, I decided to indulge his craving.

pork-chops

I, on the other hand, have been craving macaroni and cheese, so basically I decided to make us both happy!

What is it about cold weather that makes me crave carbs…..well…ok….crave them more than usual?  Sigh…I LOVE carbs

Anyway, I figured since I was having mac and cheese, I might as well go all the way and have peas as our veggie, in for a penny, in for a pound!  The tangy BBQ sauce was a perfect foil for the rich, creamy, mac and cheese. All in all, it was a really great meal, a true indulgence – I really need to get back on the bandwagon and kick carbs to the curve….soon…real soon…I promise!

Stuffed Peppers

Peppers were on sale this week in the grocery store, so I picked up quite a few of them.   The hubby loves stuffed peppers, so I figured I could kill to birds with one stone – save money AND make a dinner he loves.

stuffed-peppers

I had some shredded yellow squash in the freezer, along with some tomato sauce.  I pulled both of them out to use with this dish.  My stuffed peppers are a 1:1:1 ratio of meat, vegetables, and rice.

While the meat was browning, I started a batch of white rice.  I added diced onion, minced garlic, shredded carrot, and the shredded yellow squash to the meat as it was browning.  After seasoning the meat mixture, I combined it with the rice.  I added a nice handful of grated Parmesan cheese and stuffed the hollowed out peppers.

I had a bit of the meat mixture left, so I added it to the tomato sauce and spooned that around the peppers.   The weather was actually nice so I cooked them out on the grill and we were able to eat dinner outside, yeah! I probably should have made another side dish but I was just too tired to care.  I figured we had enough veggies on the plate between the filling and the peppers themselves.   I have been battling a cold that just won’t go away and by the time I get dinner cleaned it up it is all I can do to keep my eyes open.  Thankfully, I seem to be on the mend, just in time for our annual alumni reunion, which is coming up this weekend.  It will be three days of early mornings and late nights.  Wish me luck!

Turkey Tenderloin

We really do enjoy eating turkey and thankfully, our store carries a nice selection of turkey, year round.  This was a pre marinated, lemon and garlic turkey tenderloin.

turkey-and-asparagus

In an effort to change up the green veggie on our plates, I picked up asparagus instead of the broccoli that I had my hand on!  We were able to grill both and I served it with a bit of the leftover risotto, rounding out our meal beautifully and as an added bonus, cleaning out the fridge a bit.   The meat was so tender and juicy and who doesn’t like grilled asparagus, it is delectable.  The temperatures are supposed to go back to their seasonal norms tomorrow, so I know there are mashed potatoes in my future!

Kielbasa

Last time I was at at the butcher, I picked up a pound of their house made/house smoked kielbasa.  It is really tasty and made for a quick dinner, since I had to work a bit late.

kielbasa

Since the kielbasa and sauteed spinach are so easy and quick to get on the table, I took the time to make a batch of butternut squash risotto.  One of the hubby’s favorite starches in the world is risotto.  It really isn’t difficult to make, it just takes time and attention.  I find it a soothing way to refocus after an intensely stressful day at work.  The slow ladling of hot stock into the pot, gently stirring until the liquid is absorbed before repeating the process is strangely satisfying to me. Hopefully tomorrow will be an easier day at work!