So I know you’re all wondering where I went and why I haven’t posted in forever. (Okay really, I’ve just missed one week, but I’m sure you love me that much right?) Well, the reason I haven’t caught up from last week is that I got pretty sick and then I was out of town. I’m in the middle of transitioning from one form of birth control that I’ve been on for 3 years to another type and it’s been kicking my butt with hormones. I’m pretty sure my body thinks I’m pregnant AND going through menopause at the same time. (Neither are true.) I’m heading out of town again this weekend, so instead of leaving you for another week without any new recipes, I thought I’d share a quick round up of my top 5 go-to recipe staples.
I’m also hoping to get my favorite Irish Soda Bread recipe up on Sunday when I get back, so stay tuned for that just in time for St. Patty’s Day on Monday.
The first 3 are recipes I find myself making when we have a crowd coming over for dinner. They are all awesome and such a great choice since they’re chock full of vegetables.
The Tortellini recipe is probably the most labor intensive and active recipe of the bunch. Read the whole thing and be prepared to be by the stove for a bit. It’s worth all the work though. Yum!
The root vegetable pot pie is a great make ahead and freeze dish because it bakes up so well! When you buy the veggies you have enough to make 2… Continue reading
Every Sunday in our house involves zombies. A while ago, we invited a couple friends over for dinner and to watch the Walking Dead on a Sunday night. The simple “post-apocalypse potluck” meal of whatever we had leftover in the fridge has now morphed into a weekly Sunday night event with 8-10 people over for dinner and a watch party each week. We watch it like many people watch football- yelling at the screen: “Look behind you!” “You didn’t check the back room!” “Save your bullets!” ”Yay he’s dead!!” As crazy as it may seem to some to have people over every week, I actually thrive on the hospitality. I also love that we’ve all bonded and become better friends over a zombies. Sometimes we take those online quizzes to see which character we are and then plan what we would do if the world was infected. (I’m Maggie btw.)
We typically provide the “main” dish and ask people to bring whatever they feel like “post-apocalypse style” to contribute. Sometimes that’s beer and some tortilla chips. Other times we have a 50ct box of cookies and a salad to go with the spaghetti. At one point we had grilled cheese, meatballs, and salsa. It’s low key and fun. This past week was a treat for me because one of our weekly zombie lovers offered to make this amazing chicken pot pie recipe as our main dish. This left me with the easy task of making a suitable side dish. After thinking through the usual suspects of mashed potatoes and mac and cheese, I decided to head in the direction of salads and landed on this carrot and raisin salad. Come to find out, none of them had ever had it before! It was happily devoured, so I decided… Continue reading
I hope everyone had a lovely Valentine’s Day! Hubby was gone on a business trip all last week, but he made sure to come home on Thursday night so we could spend most of Friday together. I’m still getting in the swing of working again and having dinner on the table, but my slow cooker/Crock-Pot has been helping a lot. (Side note: I know not all “slow cookers” are made by Crock-Pot, but can’t we just all agree that “Crock-Pot” has become a synecdoche like “Kleenex”, “Band-Aid”, or “Coke” and stop trying to push the PC use of “slow cooker”?) I’m not a huge fan of going out to a fancy restaurant on a popular evening. Something about waiting for a table and having the whole place so abuzz with conversation that you almost need to yell doesn’t appeal to me. Especially not when I am just as able to cook something delicious at home.
While brainstorming something “special” that I could toss in a Crock-Pot for a Valentine’s Day in, I came up with this recipe for a corn chowder with Parmesan rind and pancetta. I’ve been making a version of this corn chowder since my mom sent me the recipe several years ago, but it always felt like there was something missing. After this last iteration though, I can tell you it’s now absolutely perfect! After dinner I actually paused to debate for a good minute over whether I wanted Hubby to bring me the ice cream I’d purchased for dessert or another bowl of the chowder. Yep, good enough to favor over ice cream. If you know me, that’s gotta be good!
If you’re like I was a little while ago, you’re probably wondering what a Parmesan rind is. Well, most Parmesan cheese has an edible… Continue reading
So I know I promised you guys a recipe every Friday, but this past week has been a bit crazy. I usually cook and photograph on Wednesdays, but on Tuesday afternoon last week, I got the call that they wanted me to start a new job at 8am Wednesday morning. I’m so excited for this job because I get to work with university students as an advisor! I love these students and this program so much. Unfortunately, all the training and -11 degree snowy weather here in Denver left me without enough time or daylight to get in my photographs. I finally got this put together and raced against daylight to squeeze in a few quick photographs on Friday night before it was gobbled up.
This recipe originally came from my grandma’s friend Dode. My grandma was an incredible baker and I definitely attribute a lot of my love for cooking to her. I wish she was still around because I think she would enjoy collaborating with me on these recipes. Anyways, she had this group of Methodist church lady friends that often swapped recipes. (You know that a recipe has to be good if it was ever taken to a church potluck.) This was one of the popular quick desserts because it only takes a few ingredients and hardly any prep at all.
Grab your favorite can of pie filling and dump it in a greased 9×9 pan. (I used cherry here, but you can use apple, blueberry, strawberry, peach, or even pumpkin pie filling.)
I wanted some hearts to be on the finished dessert to make it a Valentine’s Day dessert, but they’re completely optional. Simply cut out some parchment shapes and lay them over the pie filling before you add the cake mix. You won’t be… Continue reading
The Super Bowl is a big deal for us here in Denver this year. The Broncos haven’t been since John Elway was our quarterback back in 1999, but this year we have a great shot at winning. The whole city is “United in Orange” and incredibly excited to watch the game. I’m definitely looking forward to it. As a born and raised Texan, football is in my blood. The TV show Friday Night Lights really was my world back in High School (with maybe just a bit less drama). It was even filmed in my high school stadium! With game day just a few days away, I’ve been thinking about making some great football snacks to take to our friends’ party. One of my go-to snack staples is always kettle corn. With just 5 minutes on your stove top and 4 ingredients, you will love how easy it is to make this treat yourself! I’ve even jumped out of the box (or bag I suppose) with some brown sugar kettle corn and some cinnamon kettle corn as well.
All you need to make your own kettle corn is some popcorn, salt, sugar, and coconut oil. I used to make this kettle corn with canola oil, but have since fallen in love with coconut oil. I’m not sure I believe all of the supposed health benefits and properties that everyone loves to obsess over, but I do think it is a fairly heart-healthy oil that cooks up nicely and has a high smoke point. I also feel like the popcorn doesn’t burn as quickly as it does when I use canola oil, but maybe I’m just getting better at this with practice. Before you start in on this recipe, it is important to make sure you have everything measured and prepared… Continue reading