Go to meals

I normally spend some time over the weekend thinking about the meals for the week.  I have folders of recipes I have clipped from newspapers and magazines in addition to more than 200 cookbooks.  I look for inspiration and try to create a mix of meals (seafood, poultry, meat, etc.) and a balance of light and heavy.  My schedule is heavier on Tuesdays and Thursdays and I also plan based on evening meetings or activities.  Last weekend we were away on our ski trip so I didn’t have the luxury of my normal structure.  That is why I picked things that didn’t require a lot of thought (sorry for the lack of creativity.)

I didn’t get home from my meeting last night in time to blog the Amatriciana topping but I’ve made it before.  I made it Monday night so Keith and Samantha could assemble their pizza and eat when they were ready.  Keith heated mine up for me while I was on the way home.

Pizza Amatriciana

  • 4 slices of bacon
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic (I was out of garlic so substituted shallots) chopped
  • 3 TB red wine
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1 pizza crust

Cook bacon until crisp and drain on paper towels.  Discard bacon grease reserving about 1 TB.  Cook chopped onion (and garlic or shallot) in bacon grease until golden, about 10 minutes.  Add wine and stir in.  Add red pepper and tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Cook until thickened, about 10 minutes.

Top pizza crust with topping and crumble reserved bacon on top.  Top with mozzarella cheese and bake.

Tonight is Caesar Salad with leftover flank steak.  This is a recipe I could make in my sleep.

Caesar Salad

  • Romaine lettuce
  • 1/4 cup good olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic pressed
  • 1 egg (I use raw egg and have never had a problem)
  • Juice of 1 lemon or about 1 TB Lemon Juice
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
  • anchovies, optional
  • croutons, optional

Combine olive oil and garlic and let sit for up to 4 hours.  Strain garlic, reserving olive oil.  Wash and dry lettuce and place in a bowl.  Grind pepper over lettuce and toss with oil.  Add egg and toss well.  Add lemon juice and toss.  Add parmesan cheese and toss.  Serve with anchovies and or croutons if desired.  Top with leftover chicken or other protein of your choice.

A few others that I can turn to when I have little time and/or imagination.  (All are on the blog so search if you are interested):

  • Salmon dijon
  • Chicken with pesto and sundried tomatoes
  • Saucy sirloin
  • Tilapia with butter caper sauce
  • Tomato soup
  • Pizza with sliced sausages
  • Eastern shore grilled chicken
  • Hoisin pork
  • Shrimp and black bean quesadillas

What is your favorite go to meal when you are pressed for time?  Add a comment and share.

 

So easy a child can make it!

On Sunday afternoon we made chicken chipotle chili.  I say “we” because Samantha (9 years old) did most of the work with a little direction from mom.  We had it for dinner last night and the best part is that Samantha also likes eating it.  She was very proud of herself for being so involved with the cooking.  This also freezes well so the leftovers have been added to all of the yummy stuff piling up in our freezer.  Mom is going to get some more nights off!

Chicken Chipotle chili

  • 3 TB canola oil
  • 1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into small cubes
  • 2 chopped onions
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 TB chili powder
  • 1 TB ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 qt chicken stock
  • 28 oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes, drained of about 1/2 of liquid
  • 3 canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, roughly chopped
  • 2 cans black beans

Heat oil in a heavy sauce pan and brown chicken cubes (about 5 minutes.)  Remove chicken and drain on paper towels.  Pour off fat leaving about 1 tablespoon in pan.  Add onions and brown about 4 – 5 minutes.  Return chicken to pan.

Stir together flour, chili powder, cumin and salt and sprinkle over onions and chicken.  Stir and cook about 1 minute.  Add stock, tomatoes and chipotles and simmer covered about 30 minutes.  Add black beans and cook another 10 minutes.

Let cool and then refrigerate until ready to serve.  Serve with sour cream and tortilla chips.

Tonight we had the Pizza Amatriciana.  Samantha decided that she would take 1/4 of the pizza crust and top it with plain sauce, Mozzarella cheese and some cooked bacon.  Love that we are getting closer and closer to more nights when we are eating the same thing!

Pizza Amatriciana

  • 4 slices of bacon
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic (I was out of garlic so substituted shallots) chopped
  • 3 TB red wine
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1 pizza crust

Cook bacon until crisp and drain on paper towels.  Discard bacon grease reserving about 1 TB.  Cook chopped onion (and garlic or shallot) in bacon grease until golden, about 10 minutes.  Add wine and stir in.  Add red pepper and tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Cook until thickened, about 10 minutes.

Top pizza crust with topping and crumble reserved bacon on top.  Top with mozzarella cheese and bake at 450 for about 8 minutes.

Pizza night

Tonight we went with one of our favorites.  It is also one of Samantha’s favorites, not because she likes the pizza but because since we’re cooking bacon she gets a couple of pieces.  

Pizza Amatriciana

  • 4 slices of bacon
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic (I was out of garlic so substituted shallots) chopped
  • 3 TB red wine
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1 pizza crust

Cook bacon until crisp and drain on paper towels.  Discard bacon grease reserving about 1 TB.  Cook chopped onion (and garlic or shallot) in bacon grease until golden, about 10 minutes.  Add wine and stir in.  Add red pepper and tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Cook until thickened, about 10 minutes.

Top pizza crust with topping and crumble reserved bacon on top.  Top with mozzarella cheese and bake at 450 for about 8 minutes.

Pizza night

This pizza topping was quick to fix and delicious.  You could easily make a double batch and freeze it.  We put it on top of a Boboli shell and enjoyed it thoroughly.

Pizza Amatriciana

  • 4 slices of bacon
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic (I was out of garlic so substituted shallots) chopped
  • 3 TB red wine
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1 pizza crust

Cook bacon until crisp and drain on paper towels.  Discard bacon grease reserving about 1 TB.  Cook chopped onion (and garlic or shallot) in bacon grease until golden, about 10 minutes.  Add wine and stir in.  Add red pepper and tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Cook until thickened, about 10 minutes.

Top pizza crust with topping and crumble reserved bacon on top.  Top with mozzarella cheese and bake at 450 for about 8 minutes.

Changing the lineup

If you follow blog you know that I rarely change the menu plan once I make it although I do sometimes rotate the nights around.  We’re moving the shrimp fried rice to tomorrow night and tonight is the pizza.  This is also a good make ahead topping for nights when things are a little crazy and if you keep bacon, mozzarella cheese and pizza crusts in your freezer (as we do) can be thrown together with on hand ingredients (a good recipe to have up your sleeve).

Pizza Amatriciana

  • 4 slices of bacon
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic (I was out of garlic so substituted shallots) chopped
  • 3 TB red wine
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1 pizza crust

Cook bacon until crisp and drain on paper towels.  Discard bacon grease reserving about 1 TB.  Cook chopped onion (and garlic or shallot) in bacon grease until golden, about 10 minutes.  Add wine and stir in.  Add red pepper and tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Cook until thickened, about 10 minutes.

Top pizza crust with topping and crumble reserved bacon on top.  Top with mozzarella cheese and bake.

Pizza Amatriciana

This pizza topping was quick to fix and delicious.  You could easily make a double batch and freeze it.  We put it on top of a Boboli shell and enjoyed it thoroughly.

Pizza Amatriciana

  • 4 slices of bacon
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic (I was out of garlic so substituted shallots) chopped
  • 3 TB red wine
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1 pizza crust

Cook bacon until crisp and drain on paper towels.  Discard bacon grease reserving about 1 TB.  Cook chopped onion (and garlic or shallot) in bacon grease until golden, about 10 minutes.  Add wine and stir in.  Add red pepper and tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Cook until thickened, about 10 minutes.

Top pizza crust with topping and crumble reserved bacon on top.  Top with mozzarella cheese and bake at 450 for about 8 minutes.