Beth Fish Reads hosts Weekend Cooking. This is perfect for me since I love food and cooking almost as much as I love books!
Family Favorites Week
After a couple of months of only cooking quick, simple meals and relying a lot on leftovers, frittatas, and take-out, I cooked up a storm this week! I was finally feeling better and had some energy back, my younger son finished the soccer season so we didn't have to run off to 5 pm games, and my older son came home from college on Monday night. That last part is not good - he's been too sick to take care of himself (we suspect mono on top of his chronic illnesses but are waiting for bloodwork to confirm). As a mother, I did the only thing I could do - took care of him and cook him his favorite foods. I'm hoping that at least gives him a little bit of comfort and pleasure.
So, we had lots of our favorite meals this week and lots of flavor (as usual, all of the recipes are from Cooking Light):
I started the week with an empty fridge because I haven't been able to go to the grocery store in weeks. From the scraps we had left in pantry and fridge, I discovered we had the ingredients for Jamaican Chicken Stew. We tried this once last year while my son was away at college, and I thought he'd like it because he loves soups and stews and he loves spicy food. I added a chopped red bell pepper and sliced carrots (sauteed with the onion), and it was absolutely delicious! The flavors in this dish combine into something magical. Everyone loved it, and I also enjoyed it for lunch the next two days! (Note: my kids aren't fond of capers, so I left them for my husband and I to add on at the table.)
One busy day this week, I needed a crockpot meal, so I turned to another recipe we tried while my son was away that I knew he'd love: Tiny French Beans with Smoked Sausage, from the Cooking Light Slow Cooker Tonight Cookbook (link included below). Again, I added extra veggies, as I tend to do - a red bell pepper and sliced carrots, sauteed with the shallots (and used navy beans). When we returned from a late doctor's visit, the house smelled wonderful. This dish is the very definition of comfort food - the beans are creamy and soft, and the smoked sausage adds fabulous flavor. As I suspected, my older son loved it....and he and I both had leftovers for lunch!
Chipotle Tamale Pie. I love anything flavored with chipotles, and this casserole with cornbread topping is delicious - more comfort food. (Can you tell this photo was taken by me rather than a professional? I need some practice!)
Finally, last night, I made another of my son's favorite meals, Chicken Piccata. This is another very tasty meal and also quick, especially if you start with thin-sliced chicken and can skip the pounding step. I always serve it with whole wheat egg noodles, and last night, we had cauliflower on the side.
Tonight I am making a classic corned beef dinner, since our last CSA pick-up a couple of weeks ago included a giant head of cabbage. This is another favorite meal at our house, though we often eat it just once a year, for St. Patrick's Day, so this will be a treat. I like the New England Boiled Dinner recipe from (yes, you guessed it) Cooking Light.
So, there you have it - a week full of flavor, with many of our favorite meals. I hope you have enjoyed some good food this week, too!
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