Tomato-mushroom fettuccine with zucchini two ways! 11/23/22

Fettuccine and zoodles with tomato-mushroom-zucchini sauce

Our vegan pasta dish this week was so delicious and so filling! Using tomatoes, mushrooms, and chunks of zucchini plus stretching my pasta allotment with zoodles gives me a portion size that I really enjoy. The zucchini really did double duty! Think about adding more vegetables to your pasta dishes and you will end up with a healthier and more plentiful dinner.

Posted in American, Easy, Healthy tips, Italian, Pasta, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian, Weeknight dinners | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Chicken enchiladas with spicy black beans. 11/22/22

Chicken enchiladas with spicy black beans

This dish is heavily reliant on staples in your pantry and fridge. The enchiladas are corn tortillas filled with shredded rotisserie chicken, some jarred salsa verde, chopped onion, and cheese. The cheese I used here was what we had, feta. A melting cheese would have been a better choice but we are working on clearing space in the fridge for Thanksgiving and the feta needed to be used. We warmed the tortillas in the microwave to make them more pliable.

The rolled tortillas were nestled next to each other tightly in a 9×13 dish. The salsa verde covered the bottom of the dish and top of the tortillas. I also sprinkled any remaining cheese on top. It baked at 350F for 1/2 hour.

The spicy beans are simply a can of rinsed and drained black beans and a can of Original Rotel heated together stovetop with a dash of cumin and chipotle powder.

Posted in American, Easy, Legumes, Methods, Mexican, Poultry, Southwest U.S., Uncategorized, Vegetables, Weeknight dinners | Tagged | Leave a comment

Salmon bowl. 11/21/22

Salmon bowl with rice, cabbage, avocado, cucumber, edamame, and cilantro in a soy vinaigrette.

This bowl is a family favorite and we make it three different ways, this one with salmon, another with shrimp, and my favorite with tofu. Other than making rice and cooking the salmon, there is no other cooking involved. I use a small mandolin for slicing the cucumber and cabbage (although you could just buy a bag of shredded cabbage.) The shelled edamame come from a frozen bag. Defrost and salt. One large, ripe avocado is plenty for the three of us.

In your bowl start with a portion of rice and lay the salmon on the rice. Add the cabbage, edamame, cucumber, and avocado around the edges. Dress everything with the soy vinaigrette and oil. Garnish with cilantro, chopped green onions, and optional furikake.

Posted in Asian, Fish, Healthy tips, Legumes, Methods, pescatarian, Recipes, rice, Vegetables, Weeknight dinners | Tagged | Leave a comment

Weekly Menu November 21 – 27, 2022

Happy Thanksgiving Week! This year our son and daughter-in-law are hosting the dinner with ample assistance from our daughter. They have composed an all-hors d’oeuvres dinner which feature all sorts of finger foods. I’ve left that day blank on the menu since I am not totally sure what everyone is bringing. Have a happy day with friends and family!

Posted in Weekly menu | Leave a comment

Harira, ham, and egg. 11/20/22

Harira, ham strips, and over easy egg

This Sunday’s Breakfast For Dinner made use of leftover Harira, a Moroccan stew we made earlier this week. I added a piece of deli ham that I cut in strips, an over easy egg, and a squirt of sriracha to spice it up. I found the resulting dish a little sweet for my taste. I also think I like the taste of an egg better on its own. I know that runny eggs are supposed to be a crowning touch to many dishes but it is just not for me.

Posted in American, Easy, Eggs, leftovers, North African, Pork, stew, Vegetables | Tagged | Leave a comment

Farro bowl with sheet pan eggplant and Brussels sprouts. 11/19/22

Farro bowl with sheet pan Brussels sprouts and eggplant, edamame, and a peanut butter yogurt sauce

This dish started out as a quinoa bowl with tahini sauce that I saw on the NYTimes cooking site. John is not a fan of quinoa so I changed the grain to farro. I did not want all the calories from tahini so I made up a sauce of non-fat yogurt and peanut butter powder.

Here is my easy, fool-proof oven-baked recipe for farro (and also brown rice!)

The eggplant and Brussels sprouts I toss in olive oil and salt. I use a separate sheet pan for each vegetable. I roast the vegetables at 425F for 20 minutes for the eggplant and then put the sprouts in for the last 10 minutes. The edamame I just defrost and add a little salt.

I can only give approximates for the sauce because it is a kind of taste as you go recipe. So 1/2 cup non-fat Greek yogurt, 2 tablespoons of peanut butter powder, 1/2 teaspoon each soy sauce and sesame oil, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, a dash of salt, and water to thin the sauce out. That’s my best guess.

Posted in Grains, Healthy tips, Legumes, Recipes, Sheet pan, Vegetables, Vegetarian | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Grilled hamburger with tabbouleh 11/18/22

Grilled hamburger with tabbouleh

Once again John is responsible for making the burgers and I am taking care of the tabbouleh. He does a masterful job of cooking the burgers out on the grill in the almost dark. They are more on the medium side of medium- rare but still delicious.

I have been working on getting the most out of my patio garden. Yesterday I harvested all my basil and made pesto which I froze. Today I am using up mint and parsley. Making tabbouleh is somewhat onerous what with all the washing, drying, picking of leaves, and chopping. Today it was worth using my full-sized food processor even though it is more of a pain to clean.

This dinner was a delicious nod to summer using the last bits of our patio produce before Jack Frost kills it off.

Posted in American, Beef, Grilling, Recipes, Salad, Vegetables | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Traditional chicken dinner. 11/17/22

Pan roasted chicken breast with gravy, Instant Pot rutabaga and potato mash, sautéed broccoli

For years this was the dinner we had on Mondays. In fact our son who is married and has children of his own tells me that on Mondays he always makes chicken. I know he is not making “traditional” chicken, his dishes tend to be much more international, but still it’s chicken on Monday. Warms my heart.

Anyway, it is Thursday and I am making the vegetables that go with our chicken and John is cooking the meat. He sears the chicken breast in a pan first and then puts it in a 350F oven until cooked through.

I make the rutabaga (extended with a couple of potatoes) in the Instant Pot and set it for 15 minutes then let it cool for 10 minutes before releasing the residual steam. Pressure cooking rutabagas insures that they will be totally cooked and easy to mash. I add a teaspoon of butter to the mash. The broccoli is simply sautéed in a pan with a little water and another teaspoon of butter until tender.

While the chicken is finishing in the oven John makes a packet of chicken gravy. Our dinner is completed and it feels like a hug on a chilly night.

Posted in American, Easy, Instant Pot, Methods, Poultry, Vegetables, Weeknight dinners | Tagged | Leave a comment

Moroccan Harira soup/stew 11/16/22

Moroccan Harira as a stew

While I was away John saw an episode of America’s Test Kitchen where they made this North African dish. He thought it looked doable and good so we put it on the menu for this week. We tweaked the recipe a bit and made it spicier and more stew-like. You can use chicken stock or keep it vegan by using vegetable stock. It turned out pretty well and we will probably make it again.

Here’s the recipe with changes we made in parentheses.

Posted in Legumes, North African, Recipes, stew, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Seared tuna with rice and bok choy. 11/15/22

Seared tuna with rice and bok choy in oyster sauce

After marinating the tuna for an hour in soy sauce, ginger powder, garlic powder, and a few drops of sesame oil John coated the pieces with black and white sesame seeds. Then he seared it for two minutes on each side. The rice was made earlier in the day and reheated.

I made the bok choy. Since the pieces I had were larger I cut each one in half. I followed the recipe below which ended up with some extra sauce to put on the rice. This was a really healthy and delicious dinner.

Bok Choy in Oyster Sauce

1 tablespoon soy sauce
3½ tablespoons oyster sauce
Pinch of sugar
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon neutral oil
1 tablespoon sliced or minced garlic
4 to 6 bunches of baby bok choy, approximately 1½ pounds, cleaned, with ends trimmed (divided in half if large)

Combine soy sauce, oyster sauce, sugar and rice vinegar in a bowl and set aside.

Heat oil in a skillet or wok set over high heat. When it shimmers, add garlic, then bok choy, and stir-fry for 2 minutes. (Be careful not to burn garlic!) Add 2 to 3 tablespoons water to the skillet or wok, then cover it and allow to cook for 2 to 3 minutes more, until bok choy has softened nicely at its base.

Remove bok choy from the skillet or wok and place it on a warmed platter. Drizzle the sauce over the greens and serve.

Posted in Asian, Easy, Fish, Methods, pescatarian, Recipes, rice, Vegetables, Weeknight dinners | Tagged , | Leave a comment