I’m Such a Slacker – Catching Up

I’m Such a Slacker – Catching Up

Yeah, yeah…I know, I know…where the hell have I been, right? I’ve had a lot going on lately, as I’m sure everyone does, but my work schedule has changed as well. I am now working 12-hour days Mon-Fri so by the time I get off work, I don’t feel like cooking very often and I haven’t gotten the drive to post about the meals we’ve made since my last post. However, tonight is the night that the drive returned after an easier day at work.

Spicy Shrimp and Cheddar Grits

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So this Blue Apron meal was a spin-off of a classic Southern dish, and one of my favorites, Shrimp N Grits. My wife and I agreed, though, that although this looked pretty, it did not taste as good as the real thing. The shrimp was cooked in a tomato paste sauce with some spices and the grits were cooked with cheddar cheese and sweet corn. I liked the corn in the grits a lot, but my wife was not impressed. Basically, we’d rather have the shrimp sauteed with onion, green bell peppers, chilis, creole seasoning, and bacon.

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Spicy Hoisin Chicken with Rice and Asian Cucumber Salad

This one was one of the best meals I’ve gotten from Blue Apron. It was great to make sticky white rice the way it’s supposed to be made along with some delicious, spicy, Asian-style chicken and a fresh salad.

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The salad was made with cucumbers, scallions, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, ginger, garlic, salt, and pepper.img_20160912_133919919_hdr

The hoisin chicken was made with sesame oil, chicken, ginger, garlic, salt, pepper, hoisin sauce, scallions, bok choy, and sambal oelek chili paste.img_20160912_133853960_hdr

All together now:

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Barbecue Sloppy Joe with Green Bean Saladimg_20160913_205717317

This one was browned ground beef and garlic, all cooked and simmered in barbecue sauce, on a grilled bun. The green bean salad was dressed with diced shallot, apple cider vinegar, diced tomatoes, and whole grain mustard.

 

Sorry it’s been so long since I’ve posted, all. I’ll try to make sure it isn’t a regular thing :p

Sláinte!

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A Few Meals to Catch Up

Hi everyone. It seems like I’ve done a few of these “sorry I’ve been a slack-ass” posts lately, doesn’t it? So, to catch up since I’ve been lazy about posting anything, here are a few of the meals I’ve done lately.

Spaghetti Squash with Meat Sauce

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So my wife and I decided to try to start eating healthier and being more active and although spaghetti isn’t the healthiest thing in the world, changing the BIGGEST no-no, the pasta, definitely doesn’t do anything but help one’s cause. So here, I made a homemade Italian-style meat sauce and served it in spaghetti squash halves.

So, first thing’s first. Cut the spaghetti squash in half, scoop out the seeds with a spoon, drizzle the cut sides with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Put them cut-side-down on a baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees for about 50 minutes. Pull them out of the oven and use a fork to shred the insides of the squash, simply pulling the fork down the center and it will come out in strands like spaghetti noodles. Scoop some of the “noodles” out and either discard or save for something else and fill with whatever sauce you’d like. Top with shredded cheese and bake until the cheese is browned and bubbly.

To make my sauce, I diced a red onion and minced 3 cloves of fresh garlic and sauteed them in a pot with hot olive oil for about 60 seconds. Once they were a bit softer and aromatic, I put in a can of tomato sauce, a can of diced tomatoes with basil and olive oil, 1 lb of ground beef, salt, pepper, basil, oregano, thyme, and parsley. I stirred the mixture well and let the sauce simmer for about 2-3 hours. This was the final result:

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Grilled Yellowfin Tuna Steak with Grilled Yellow Squash and Tomato, Cucumber, and Onion Salad

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To marinate the tuna steak, put the following into a gallon-size Ziploc bag: 2 cloves of fresh minced garlic, soy sauce, lime juice, salt, pepper, fresh or dried thyme. Mix the marinade well and put the tuna steaks in the bag, pushing out all of the air and zipping it closed and covering the tuna steaks completely with the marinade. Let sit for at least 30 minutes and grill for about 2 minutes per side, leaving the center rare (as tuna is supposed to be served).

For the salad, just dice half an onion, 2 tomatoes, and 1 cucumber. Toss in a bowl with olive oil, Italian dressing (creamy if you have it), salt, pepper, oregano, basil, and thyme.

For the squash, simply slice the squash however you’d like so that it’s easy to grill, put in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

 

Blue Apron: Thai Chili Chicken with Tinkerbell Peppers Over Rice

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This meal was delicious. Blue Apron provided just the right amount of spice for someone like my wife who doesn’t like lots of heat, while delivering tons of Thai-inspired flavor. This was one of my absolute favorite meals that I’ve gotten from Blue Apron.

 

Blue Apron: Empanadas and Mexican Crema with Tomato, Cucumber, and Onion Salad

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I had never tasted real Mexican empanadas before this dish; the only ones I’d had were the apple ones from Taco Bell haha! So, I was pleasantly surprised when these were filled with ground beef, Mexican spices, tomato paste, fresh diced tomatoes, and scallions all cooked together. The pastry dough was so flaky and delicious when they came out of the oven and the crema cut the spice of the empanada with its dairy and lime flavors. This dish also ranks high on my list of favorite Blue Apron meals.

 

Well, thank you for coming back to read, all! I know I’ve been sporadic with these postings and for that I apologize. I hope I don’t make you think that I’m just not that into this blog because that’s really not the case. I just need to make sure that I make time for it because I really do enjoy writing these posts for you all to read and I hope that I’ve been able to bring some of you some joy in new recipes and delicious food from my table to yours. Until next time…

 

Sláinte!

Spiced Pork Chops with Mashed Potatoes, Garlic Kale, English Peas, and Goat Cheese

Spiced Pork Chops with Mashed Potatoes, Garlic Kale, English Peas, and Goat Cheese

Tonight’s Blue Apron meal was one of my favorites. It had great flavors and textures that are known to go well together; pork, potatoes, peas, and garlic.

First, the potatoes were diced and boiled in a pot of salted water. Then, as the potatoes boiled, chopped shallots were added to a pan with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Once the shallots were lightly browned, the english peas were added with water to steam and hydrate. The water cooked off and the peas and shallots were seasoned with salt and pepper and set aside in the microwave to keep warm.

Olive oil was added to the pan along with the pork chops, having been patted dry and seasoned with salt, pepper, and a seasoning blend (ground fennel, ground coriander, ground mustard, and garlic powder). The chops were cooked for about 3 minutes on each side until they were browned and cooked through, then placed on a chopping block to rest for about 5 minutes.

While the pork rested, olive oil was added to the pan of pork fond along with a few cloves of minced garlic, salt, and pepper. Once this sautéed for about a minute, chopped kale was added to the pan with water until bright green and wilted. The pork chops were then sliced against the grain and the dish was plated. The potatoes first, then the kale, then the sliced pork, then the english peas and shallots, then it was all topped with fresh goat cheese.

Violà!

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Sláinte!

 

Spicy Fried Catfish Sandwiches and Chopped Salad with Radishes

Spicy Fried Catfish Sandwiches and Chopped Salad with Radishes

Tonight’s Blue Apron meal was spicy fried catfish sandwiches and chopped salad with radishes. For this meal, the catfish fillets were sliced length-wise, seasoned with salt and pepper, and then coated in a batter that was spiced with a spicy Mexican blend. The batter fried perfectly, turning a light brown and ending up crispy, adding a great crunch to the fish. The fillets were placed on toasted buns with crispy lettuce that had been tossed in a spicy aioli. On the side, more of the lettuce was tossed into a salad with the aioli and sliced radishes to make a salad.

As you can tell, this meal was very simple, which is GREAT for a Monday. I love having meals that are easy and have great varieties of taste and texture. This meal had it all.

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Sláinte!

Nepalese Chicken Tarkari with Garlic-Spinach Rice and Spiced Tomato Sauce

Nepalese Chicken Tarkari with Garlic-Spinach Rice and Spiced Tomato Sauce

Last night’s Blue Apron meal was Chicken Tarkari; spiced with salt, pepper, cumin, and turmeric. This dish was served with garlic-spinach rice and spiced tomato sauce. I think this one was one of my favorites as it was very similar to some Indian dishes I’ve had before and I absolutely love cumin, turmeric, and other Indian spices; especially the ones that pack the heat!

First, 2 cloves of fresh, chopped garlic were put into a pot with some olive oil; followed by the basmati rice, a big pinch of salt, and water. While the rice steamed, spinach was cooked in olive oil with salt and pepper until wilted, then drained and finely chopped.

As the rice continued to steam, the chicken was seasoned with salt and pepper, then dusted with the spice blend on both sides and cooked in a frying pan, loosely covered with aluminum foil. I had never cooked anything this way before, with the foil on top, but it almost steamed the chicken while it was frying in the pan at the same time and created a juicy, very flavorful piece of meat. The chicken was then set aside to rest.

In the same pan with the chicken fond, tomato sauce was added, along with more of the Tarkari spice blend, garlic, ginger, salt, and pepper. The sauce was boiled until reduced and thickened, then crème fraîche was added and stirred until combined. When the rice was finished, salt and pepper was added, along with the spinach and stirred well, then fluffed with a fork.

The final result:

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As you can tell from the chicken, I need to sharpen my knife (*facepalm*), which is something I hardly ever forget. But regardless of how it looks, the chicken turned out flavorful and delicious and was well accompanied by the tasty rice and semi-sweet and savory tomato sauce. This one was right up my alley.

 

Sláinte!

Meatball Ragout with Potato, Swiss Chard, Onion, and Carrot

Tonight’s Blue Apron meal is a ragout made with beef meatballs (beef, panko breadcrumbs, seasoning), Swiss chard, Yukon gold potatoes, Yellow onion, carrots, tomato paste, and a slurry (corn starch and water to thicken the sauce).

This meal was very filling and hearty, so those up north where it’s still cold must have enjoyed this more than we did. Although a great dish that wasn’t too complicated, it was not one of our favorites as it didn’t have as much flavor as some of the dishes we’ve had previously. However, this is still another example of how fresh, healthy, and well-portioned these Blue Apron meals are.

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Sláinte!