one stretched chicken!
Photo courtesy of 'Witchy Woman'
With the exception of the great sausage debacle (which will be explained later) I managed to avoid the chain grocery stores again this week. Amazingly, the freezer is not empty, although
the pantry is looking a little lean. What I have discovered is that there are somethings that make me a little nervous. Early in the week I thought I was almost out of yeast - until I dug a little deeper into the freezer, unearthing a whole unopened block
of yeast. All was right with the world until I realized that I was down to my last 2 onions. Oh, be still my heart!
So began the list for Cardenas where I get my produce.
$21.83 later I was set for the week.
Red, green & yellow bell peppers, green onions, mushrooms, broccoli, cilantro, tomatoes, limes, avocados, bananas, red & white potatoes, lettuce, apples, zucchini, jicama,
celery, ONIONS - both red and white, garlic, cabbage & green beans.
With those purchases the quest for recipes was on.
The criteria for this week remained the same:
1) The recipe must need a picture.
2) It must sound like something we would enjoy.
3) I must have all the essential ingredients on hand.
I wish I could say that my recipe selections for this week were spot on - but that is not the case. Sunday brought on two recipes that were so-so, what I call calorie wasters.
With all the cream cheese in these I was hoping they would be very tasty. They were very plain - the lemon was good but the little pancakes on their own weren't great.
Forgive me, but FRIED anything should be
great - these missed the mark in the seasoning department.
No Baking Papa requested Italian for Valentines day. I found a recipe for lasagna that sounded like it would fit the bill. I like to make my sauce for lasagna a day or two
ahead to let the flavors develop - so I set to work.
The recipe called for ground beef and ground pork OR Italian sausage. I had the ground beef but the sausage / pork was absent.
I love this man I married, so I broke my promise and headed to Albertson's where I snagged a package of ground pork and headed home.
Now, keep in mind - I was sleep deprived and operating on 'empty'. (That is my excuse and I am sticking to it.) I arrived home and realized I had purchased breakfast sausage.
Hmmmm......what to do? Back to the store, snagged a package of Italian sausage - on sale, only to arrive home and discover I had purchased BRATS!
At this point I threw in the towel. I tossed a couple of potatoes & a chicken in the oven to roast and called it quits!
My friends on the Buzz tried to talk me through turning my errant purchases into a decent Italian meal but I didn't trust myself in the kitchen and decided to tackle this
project after a good nights sleep.
The following day, in order to avoid showing my face in the store for yet another package of sausage I traded my daughter a package of Brats for a package of Italian sausage.
Reviewing the recipe again I decided that the selected recipe wasn't great enough for Valentines day after all. Change of plans.
I ended up making Bon Apetite's recipe for meat sauce.
I doubled the recipe and I am glad I did. No Baking Papa was a happy man. We had Baked Ziti, Spaghetti and still had some sauce for the freezer. I have been instructed to
not give away that sauce in the freezer. He is hoping for a repeat performance.
The Holiday Green Beans were pretty good. I cut the sauce in half and it was still to much for 2 lbs of green beans. NB Papa really liked the addition of peanuts. The sauce was actually pretty good on
broccoli the next day.
I still have a lot of chicken breasts in the freezer and I have had my eye on this recipe for a while. Again, I cut the sauce for this in half and it was still way too much sauce. It is really sweet
but has great potential. I am going to play with this a lot. I served this with the green beans and some rice.
I have my own version of Taco Soup but decided to give this one a try. It is more like a Chili than a soup and although there is nothing really wrong with that, it isn't what we like. After taking the
picture, tasting and reviewing the recipe I set to work doctoring it up. I added 2 quarts of chicken broth, zucchini, carrots, cilantro - a bunch more seasonings and ended up with a really good pot of soup.
At this point, NB Papa was asking when I was going to move onto desserts. In combing through the pantry I unearthed my hoard of pumpkin. While there might have been a threat of the a pumpkin shortage
last year - there is no shortage of pumpkin in my pantry. This will not be the last of the pumpkin recipes.
The filling on this is really bland with no spices and it is a very soft filling. Not custard like at all. The topping was very good when first baked but the filling was sloppy - chilled
over night and the filling set up better but then the topping wasn't crunchy any more.
Oh well, you can't win them all.
I have made a few other things, that I won't bore you with. This week concluded with me adding more to my freezer than I used from it. But we now have Meat Sauce, Taco Soup and some breakfast
sausage to look forward to.