Patty Melts

John has been on a rye bread kick lately.  Everytime he orders a sandwich, he has asked for rye.  When I make breakfast on the weekend he has been requesting rye toast.  Works for me, I love rye bread.   When I told him we were having burgers for dinner, he asked if he could have rye bread instead of a roll.   I said sure, and proceeded me make a match of caramelized onions so we could have Patty Melts.

patty melts

I made a batch of potato salad as our side dish.  Perfect late summer weekend dinner.  We were busy all day with projects, so making the salad and onions in the morning worked out beautifully.  All I needed to do was grill the burgers and the bread and dinner was served.

He made a “special sauce” to go with his burger – it was a combo of steak sauce and BBQ sauce.  He was thrilled with his concoction.  I am glad he is getting more adventurous!

Patty Melts

For whatever reason, I was craving a burger on the grill.  I am a  bit of a pain in the rear when it comes to ground meat, I will only eat it if it is freshly ground.   What does that mean for dinner at our house…..yes, I grind all of our meat using the Kitchen Aid attachment.  Having a meal with ground meat at our house requires planning, effort, and time.  All things I am happy to do when it comes to cooking.

I like the fat content of ground chuck, so I picked up a chuck roast, cut it into small pieces and froze those pieces for about half an hour.   It makes it easier to grind if the meat is slightly frozen.

I wasn’t able to find a roast under 3 lbs, so we had plenty of beef to work with! To the ground meat, I added some Montreal Steak Seasoning and formed them into patties.  The hubby wanted two burgers, I opted for one.  I rounded out our meal with some grilled potatoes and a salad.

The hubby was in the mood to turn the burgers into Patty Melts – which was totally fine with me.  I sauteed some onions while the burgers were cooking.  John added some swiss cheese to the burgers when they were almost done grilling.  While the cheese was melting, he grilled some butter rye bread.  It took just a minute to assemble the burger.

For the potatoes, I simply cleaned and cut some red bliss potatoes, tossed them in a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper and threw them in a pan on the grill.   Perfect early spring meal on the grill and it definitely hit the spot!

Meatball Sandwiches

I have totally  been on a “let’s clean out the freezer” kick this month.  I’ve decided since my work schedule is nuts in April, I’m going to consider this my version of spring cleaning.

Anyway, I needed a dinner that wouldn’t have leftovers since the hubby was only in town for one night this week.  I pulled out a batch of meatballs in sauce that I had made and froze a while back.  Easy peasy, I stopped at the store and grabbed some rolls and some provolone cheese.  I had a bag of frozen french fries in the freezer (one more thing GONE, whoo hoo!), dinner was done in a flash!

I started by turning on the oven, then I put the meatballs and sauce in a pot on the stove.  While the meatballs slowly simmered, I baked off the french fries.  Right before they were done, I split the rolls, toasted them and added provolone cheese.

meatlball sammies

They were incredibly tasty, if I do say so myself.  I added a salad to my plate, because I needed a green vegetable, hubby was content with meat and carbs.  Clean up was a snap,  I have more room in my freezer, AND we had a halfway homemade meal on a busy weeknight.  I’m counting this one as a win.

Egg Salad Sandwich

Ever since Easter I have been craving an Egg Salad Sandwich.  For the first time in a long time, I didn’t dye eggs for Easter.  We didn’t have anyone coming, my work schedule has been insane, and I just didn’t take the time to make it happen.  BIG MISTAKE – what is it about Easter that has me craving egg salad? Well, a week after Easter, I found myself boiling up some eggs…..

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A little egg, a little mayo, a bit of diced onion, and a squirt of yellow mustard.  Voila!  Egg salad, easy, inexpensive, and YUMMY!  I toasted up a bit of bread, added a generous amount of lettuce and dinner was served.  Very easy dinner for one, if I do say so myself! This absolutely hit the spot and satisfied my craving, plus it just looks so pretty, don’t ya think?

Chicken Salad

I have been experimenting with my chicken salad.  I have never been one for a salad with a TON of mayo, and in an effort to be healthy, I have been looking for ways to cut back on fat.

With that in mind, I have been trying to find a substitute for the mayo in my chicken salad.

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I started by replacing all of the mayo with fat free plain greek yogurt.  It wasn’t bad….but it wasn’t good either.  I ate it, but I can’t say I was looking forward to ever eating that again.  Sigh….I figured I would play with the ratio of mayo to yogurt and FINALLY came across the perfect combination – 2/3 yogurt to 1/3 mayo.   Low fat, delicious, and as an added bonus – extra protein from the yogurt.  Now I just need to eat it on greens and not in a roll….baby steps people, baby steps!

SNOW!

Sorry folks, the cold weather and snow is all my fault.   I took the hubby to church yesterday for a christening and BAM, three hours later, temperature plummet and snow falls from the sky, I guess you can officially say hell has frozen over!

Since the weather was down right frosty, I decided to make a batch of soup.  I have been craving a bowl of cream of whatever soup and I finally gave in today….Cream of Cauliflower to the rescue.

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Super duper simple.  I diced and sauteed three leeks in butter.  I seasoned it with salt and pepper before adding two heads of cauliflower and eight cups of broth.  I tossed in some fresh thyme and two bay leaves.  I brought it to a boil, turned it to a simmer and let it cook, covered for 30 minutes.  While the soup was cooking, I cut two other heads of cauliflower into small florets and steamed them.   After 30 minutes, I pureed the soup, added in the florets, two cups of shredded cheddar cheese, and two cups of heavy cream.  YUM!

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We had the soup for lunch along with sandwiches.  Not a bad way to spend a frigidly cold November day!

Butternut squash soup

I only used half the butternut squash in the risotto, the other half was peeled, cut, and sitting in my fridge.  I also had half a red onion, and one celery stalk hanging out in the crisper drawer.  I decided to make a small, quick batch of soup, since the nights have been a bit chilly this week.

I didn’t follow a recipe, I diced the onion and celery, peeled and diced a carrot.  I tossed them in a pot with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper.  I let them sweat while I peeled and diced three small white potatoes.  I added the potatoes and butternut squash to the pot along with a splash of apple cider.

I added 4 cups of vegetable stock, a dash of curry power, a dash of paprika, and a dash of smoked paprika.  I brought the entire pot to a boil, turned it down to a simmer and let it cook until the vegetables were tender.   I pureed the contents of the pot, added a little more salt and pepper and served it with a simple grilled cheese sandwich.  I don’t think the hubby realized he ate, and actually LIKED, a vegetarian dinner, until he was done!