This Week in Yum

Seriously, how is July almost over already? I guess being away for two weeks at the beginning of the month helped make it fly by. I was finally able to get back into the swing of things this week, and despite a medical emergency close call, I made some delicious stuff in the kitchen!

First up was a vegetarian loaf – full of beans and flavor. I wasn’t sure if it would hold together enough to resemble meatloaf, but it did. I don’t even remember how I found this recipe, but I’m so glad I did. It made enough for both dinner and lunch the next day, and I had most of the ingredients already on hand. I definitely want to make this again, and I think it could be just as delicious if I play around with the spices.

On Tuesday I decided to make brussels sprouts, because they’re one of my favorite vegetables. Someone doesn’t like them, so I actually have never made them myself; I’ve only ever had them at my parent’s house. So after checking with my mom to see how she usually makes them, I got to work in the kitchen. It was so easy – I threw about 3 Tbsp of olive oil into a pan, chopped up three cloves of garlic, and tossed the brussels (I cut them in half) into the pan with some salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. I sautéed them over medium-high heat for about 10 minutes, and I had myself a delicious side dish. Since I wound up eating the entire carton myself, they actually wound up being my main dish! So easy. So delicious. I just don’t understand why people don’t like brussels sprouts!

Wednesday was quick & easy pizza after the Downtown Westfield 5k that I didn’t get to run (see above with the “medical close call”), but the hubs did. So even though I didn’t run, I got to enjoy the pizza!

Thursday’s dinner came from a recipe I found on Pinterest (of course) for Linguine with Smoky Avocado Sauce. I had grilled avocado for the first time a few months ago and loved it, and I’ve used avocado as a “cream sauce” before and loved it, so when I saw this recipe I knew I had to make it. The recipe itself doesn’t say how much pasta to use, so I wound up using enough for three servings, by just grabbing some handfuls of spaghetti. I really need to get myself one of those pasta measuring contraptions, because I never know how much I’m using when it comes to spaghetti.

In addition to dinner, there’s been no lack of dessert. Most nights of the week end with a little ice cream. Somehow, our cats know exactly when it’s ice cream time – no matter where they are in the house, they come bounding into the kitchen, and subsequently perch themselves on either arm of our couch, stalking our every bite. It may seem like a bit of an exaggeration, but I captured the below picture one night while we were trying to enjoy our dessert. It happens every single time. They’re lucky they are so darn cute.

I have next week’s meals all planned out already, but I’m thinking they may change. I’m picking up our very first CSA box today (and I’m so excited!!), so I’ll need to be sure to incorporate the goodies into our meals for the week. I can’t wait to see what we get!

Did you have anything noteworthy this week? 
Do you have pets that stalk your every move when you eat? 

Bang for your buck

It’s no secret that I’m a planner. Not only do I religiously keep my Google Calendar up to date, I also tote around a physical planner with me, just in case. Naturally this trait of mine has spilled over into the food realm, making me a big meal planner as well. As you can see below, this is just a snip-it of last week and next two weeks in terms of our planned meals, my runs, homework assignments, and any other noteworthy events (the green is dinner and there are some holes that need to be filled):

Now that I’m student teaching, even though I’m home earlier, those hours are spent doing homework for my seminar course, studying for the Praxis II, and a fun little thing called lesson planning. Last week was my first week and there wasn’t any lesson planning, but that changed this past weekend. It’s a good thing it snowed Saturday – I had no excuse. So, I’ve been trying to find meals that I can make on Sunday and then use in different ways throughout the week.

This week, I made Bon Appétite’s Cannellini Beans with Kale, that I decided to serve over brown rice on Monday evening. At first I wasn’t sure if there would be enough flavor, but I was pleasantly surprised. The recipe is actually intended to be used for a spin on bruschetta, but it was just as delicious served over rice.

On Wednesday, I took the cooking liquid from the original recipe and 3 1/2 cups of the cannellini beans and kale, and turned into a soup using this recipe. Being able to take something so simple and use it in two completely different ways was not only a time, but also a money saver. Since the weather has actually felt like winter the past few days, this hearty soup was perfect.

I’m definitely on the hunt for more recipes like this, where I can buy a bunch of ingredients and re-use them in multiple ways.