What’s for Dinner? Borrow My Meals

Feel bored, overwhelmed, or just too busy to worry about what to eat this week?  No worries.  I hope you find some inspiration here.  When all else fails, borrow my meals.  Each week I will be posting What’s for Dinner? 

Everyday Granola 
As in, “I could eat this granola Every. Single. Day”.  The base recipe comes from My Gluten Free Kitchen.  I took Michelle’s advice and customize each batch depending on my mood.  I added toasted unsweetened flaked coconut to this month’s and served it with vanilla yogurt and fruit from our co-op basket.

Banana Bread Mini-Loaves adapted from 8 Weeks to a Better You Recipes

Stewed Cabbage & Tomatoes with Smoked Sausage
I had some stewed cabbage leftover from making cabbage rolls.  I added a little salt and pepper and reheated it over medium-high to high heat until the liquid evaporated.  Then I cubed smoked sausage (which I browned in another pan) and added it to the cabbage.  Serve it spooned over leftover rice, and that’s lunch in a hurry. Both boys commented they liked these little German bowls even better than the cabbage rolls.

Grilled Pork Chops with Grilled Spicy Garlic Bok Choy & Ginger Rainbow Carrots
For the bok choy and chicken teriyaki, I use tamari because it is gluten free and the brand I found is non-gmo.

Grilled Spicy Garlic Bok Choy
Gather:
5 heads baby bok choy
2 Tablespoons chili oil
2 Tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
2 Tablespoons honey
2 cloves garlic, minced
To Prepare:
Heat grill to medium to low heat (400-350).  Combine tamari, chili oil, honey, and garlic in bowl.  Slice bok choy in half length-wise, place on a rimmed platter, and brush with chili-tamari mixture.  Wrap tops of bok choy with foil.
Grill bok choy until slightly softened and charred (5 minutes or so on each side).  Remove foil and arrange on serving tray.  Brush with remaining chili-tamari mixture while hot.

Grilled Ginger Rainbow Carrots
Gather:
1 bunch rainbow carrots
½ X ½ inch cube of crystallized ginger
Salt, pepper, drizzle of olive oil
To prepare:
Clean carrots and cut lengthwise and crosswise once.  On a square of heavy duty foil, toss olive oil, salt, pepper, and ginger with carrots.  Fold to seal foil tightly.  Grill over medium to high (375-400) heat for approximately fifteen minutes or until desired tenderness.

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Tex-Mex Sweet Potato Skins
These may be my new favorite dish. Could you pack more good for you into four bites? Thank you! Thank you Tieghan at Half Baked Harvest for the inspiration! They are works of art.
Gather:
4 small organic yams or sweet potatoes, baked at 375 for one hour, halved lengthwise and cooled about ten minutes then hollowed out to make a potato skin
1 cup black beans
1 chicken breast, small dice or shredded
1 cup cooked or frozen spinach
1 cup Monterrey Jack cheese, divided
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons lime juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
2 teaspoons chili powder

To make:
Combine oil, lime juice, garlic, cumin, chili powder, and oregano to make a seasoned oil. In a separate bowl, combine chicken, beans, spinach, and half a cup of cheese to make the stuffing. Brush skins with seasoned oil, place on asking stone or lined baker, and bake in a 400 degree oven for 10 minutes or until they begin to crisp. I added the remaining seasoned oil to the stuffing. Stuff the potatoes, top with remaining cheese, and bake for an additional ten minutes. Serve & listen to everyone rejoice at how yummy they are (including resident sweet potato hater). Decide Tieghan might be your new favorite food blogger.

Juice
Giada’s Rise & Shine Juice
If I make it again, I will add an apple because on the show the apples she demonstrated with were large and the ones in my co-op basket were very small and I will not add the carrot.

Cucumber Melon Juice
1 handful spinach leaves
4 cups watermelon
1 large cucumber, peeled

Smoothie Add-in:
Frozen honeydew melon

Snacky, Snacky:
Roasted salted almonds & pretzels
Plums, peaches, melon

Stew Comfort

Fall is here, change is rough, life is busy. It has been COLD. I have been craving comfort food. (more on that later, but for now) I decided to make stew. I haven’t had a yummy, warm, hug in a bowl stew in years – so I tried good ol Pioneer Woman’s Sunday Night Stew on a bed of not-waist-friendly mashed potatoes. I tweaked it a bit…It was amazing! It was just what I was looking for…it was like chocolate, shoe shopping, and an afternoon nap. I was so pleased. My family was not. Small disclaimer: for twelve years now, one food habit that my husband has not changed is his dislike of soup, stew, or any form of Rachael Ray stoup. No chicken and dumplings. No pot roast. No taco soup. No. So….he didn’t surprise me. I invited my parents who always turned to soup, stew, pot roast, and goulash while I was growing up. They turned me down. So the four of us dug in. We regularly eat soup like substances for dinner on shift nights, but then the “Ewws” began. Really? All three children! Even the baby fussed all through her bowl. They are normally veggie eaters. Raw veggie eaters. Roasted veggie eaters. Soft veggie eaters; no so much. They are delusional. IGNORE my family on this one and try it. My point: stew sounded like a wonderful idea to me, it took me over a week to get it prepared and served, it tasted great to me. It was not a hit. I ended the evening with thoughts of “I made stew. I can’t give it away, I will be eating it by myself for months, but I made it.”

Pasta Pronto!

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Sometimes when you’ve had a long school day, swim lessons, and your kitchen is packed up, you will make pasta.  (Cause it’s quick, cheap and makes a lot).

Sometimes when it’s a shift night for hubby, you will put peppers, parmesan, and jarred marinara in that pasta and not even feel bad there’s no meat.

Sometimes when the kids are wound up,  you are NOT and you just want SLEEP, you will give them Crayola kid’s paint and toilet paper rolls and tell them to CREATE while you make dinner.