Sunday, September 01, 2013

Weekend Cooking 9/1

Each weekend, Beth Fish Reads hosts Weekend Cooking.  This is perfect for me since I love food and cooking almost as much as I love books!

September 1! Woohoo! I know most people are mourning the end of summer, but I am excited for the start of fall. It is my favorite season, I love the cooler weather, and the kids go back to school so that I can get back to writing and get more rest (it's tough juggling family demands when you have a chronic illness).

We had another very busy, exhausting week, so I stuck to super-easy meals again - and we actually ate out a lot more than we normally do! The kids are both away at the beach with friends for the weekend, so my husband and I closed the kitchen and are taking a well-deserved break. Food-wise, we still have all the fabulous fresh produce of summer here - tomatoes, sweet corn, local peaches. My oldest son is back in college, so it is mostly just the three of us again.

Monday night, I made a quick past meal that is perfect for summertime, Shrimp and Squash Penne. This simple dish is perfect for all that extra zucchini and summer squash coming from the garden and CSA now, with simple but tasty flavors. I added a bit of fresh parsley from the farm at the end, and it was delicious.

All I had left from last week's CSA was lots of juicy tomatoes and some jalapenos, so on Tuesday, we had an old favorite school-night recipe, Chipotle Bean Burritos, with the addition of fresh homemade salsa instead of plain tomatoes. Very quick and easy...and very tasty.

My Mom reminded me that I used to make the kids a special surprise on their first day of school, like this School Bus Cake (directions from Family Fun magazine) - ours didn't look quite like the one in the magazine, but the kids loved it! So, when my youngest son started his sophomore year of high school on Wednesday, I decided to make him a favorite dinner. Then, I realized that all of his favorite meals revolve around seafood! So, I surprised him and ordered a dozen steamed and seasoned crabs for dinner (we live near the Chesapeake Bay, so blue crabs are a tradition every summer). The fresh sweet corn from our CSA were a perfect accompaniment, with some simple boiled red potatoes. He was thrilled, and we all enjoyed the treat!

My sons on the first day of school 2001
The next night, with both boys gone for the weekend, I used the meager 3/4 cup of leftover crabmeat to make some crabcakes for my husband and I, along with leftover potatoes, and some lovely yellow beans from the farm. I loosely used this Maryland Crab Cakes recipe but cut by 4, left out the milk (I'm dairy intolerant), replaced it with a small spoon of olive oil mayo, and added some Old Bay seasoning. And, since then, we've been eating out! I love to cook when I have the time and energy, but I am enjoying this little break.

Hope you are enjoying the end-of-summer food this week, too!


  1. I'll have to try both the shrimp pasta and the crab cake recipe... they both sound like recipes my family would love. That school bus cake is the best!

  2. It's always nice to get a break in cooking. Love that shrimp and zuke idea. I'm running out of ideas for using up my summer squash.

  3. I think I'll be picking up some shrimp at the store to try that pasta combo! Looks delicious. Love the photo of the cake! :)