Dishes, Dishes and More Dishes
Cooking at home has taken on a whole new meaning: Dishes! And lots of them!! I know many of you are cooking more than ever, but hang in there. Cooking together with your family is such a fun way to spend time together. For slightly older kids, let them pick a night to meal plan and cook dinner. For younger kids, say yes to that messy baking project. The measuring can count as math homework!
If your kids need inspiration for what to cook, send them to my YouTube for how-to recipe videos and I’ve posted maybe millions of recipe ideas on my Pinterest page. Lastly, if you missed last week’s knife skills post or easy pantry meals post be sure to give them a read!
I’m excited to share that this week I’ll teach two free Zoom cooking classes. The first is a Pantry Pasta class, April 1 at 2pm CST. Register in advance to save your spot. The next is Sunday, April 4 at 4pm CST and it’s a Taco Night Dinner class, with homemade taco seasoning, the best ground meat tacos and pickled red onions. Register in advance! We’ll focus on some basics and tips to elevate your cooking game at home!
White Bean and Andouille Sausage Soup. A couple months ago I froze a monster batch of rosemary and garlic white beans in my InstantPot. Perfect for a batch of slow cooker white bean soup with sliced andouille sausage, greens and celery. If you’re using canned white beans for this, rinse and drain them first and decrease the stock to 4 cups. No collard greens? Use kale (center stem removed), spinach or arugula.
Instant Pot Picadillo. We’re substituting ground beef for the pork since that’s what I have, but ground pork or turkey also work well. If you don’t have a whole tomato, this will be just as delicious without. Serve with steamed rice or cauliflower rice. Cuban black beans would also be a tasty side.
Lemon and garlic pan-fried cod. We have frozen wild cod filets from Trader Joe’s in the freezer, and amazingly I have everything to make this! Full disclosure, I haven’t tested this recipe so fingers crossed it’s a good one! Serve with a veggie side or salad. I plan on making a sheet pan of roasted mixed veggies: Broccoli florets, sliced carrots and leeks. Toss with olive oil, sprinkle generously with salt and roast at 425 for 25-35 minutes. If you don’t have cod but you happen to have salmon, make my slow roasted salmon. I’ve been craving slow roasted sweet potatoes, so they may also make an appearance.
Veggie Fried Rice. We’re using up the odds and ends of vegetables in the fridge for vegetable fried rice. It’s a family favorite! Recipe below.
Here’s How to Make Aunt Shelley’s Fried Rice
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil, plus 1 more for cooking the eggs
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 5-6 green onions, white and green parts sliced thin
- 4-5 stalks celery, chopped
- 2-3 carrots, chopped, or pre-packaged julienned carrots, about 1 cup
- 1 cup chopped precooked beef, pork or chicken (optional)
- 3 cups cooked short grain sushi rice (Cal-Rose or Nishiki)
- 3 tablespoons sesame oil, toasted or regular
- ¼ cup tamari, soy sauce or coconut aminos
- 4 cups mixed vegetables, chopped fine (broccoli, green beans, asparagus, sugar snap peas, bok choy, etc)
- 4 eggs, whisked well
In a large Dutch oven or wok over medium heat, warm the avocado oil. Add the onion, green onions and celery and cook until softened, about 4 minutes. Next add the carrots and cook an additional minute.
Once the carrots soften, add the meat (if you’re using) and stir to combine. Leftover steak, teriyaki chicken or honey hoisin pork tenderloin works well also.
Stir in the cooked rice (day old or even leftover rice from takeout is fine). Sprinkle with sesame oil, which helps to flavor it slightly, and then add the tamari and combine. Be sure to scrape up the onions and celery in the bottom of the pan and combine well.
Add in the chopped green vegetables and stir to combine.
In a separate pan over medium heat, add one tablespoon avocado oil. Add the whisked eggs and push them gently across the pan to create long ribbons of cooked egg. Add a pinch of salt while cooking. Here’s a scrambled egg tutorial in case you need!
Once the eggs are scrambled, add them to the fried rice and stir to combine. Taste for seasoning and add more tamari if desired. Serve with sriracha or your favorite chili sauce.
Pantry pasta! We made a cacio e pepe in my free online Zoom class earlier this week. If you’d like to change things up in your pasta, try some of these combos: drained and rinsed garbanzo beans and canned chopped tomatoes, chopped marinated artichokes and capers, chopped jarred pepperoncini or roasted red peppers and red chili flakes or even canned tuna or anchovies with lemon and capers. Don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it! Here are eight more pantry pasta ideas.
At the end of the week, we’ve been doing something called “come and take it.” I warm up leftovers and maybe (maybe!) toss a salad and then everyone dishes up their own dinner. If they don’t like the leftovers available, they get to make their own PB&J, quesadilla or bowl of cereal! It’s been satisfying to use up leftovers, and also to cut down on effort at the end of the week. If you’re cooking, consider a big batch of three-bean vegetarian chili. Leftovers are delicious in a baked potato, on nachos or an omelette.
Take out! We’ll most likely get Tex-Mex, because in Texas queso is LIFE and margaritas are HOLY WATER. We have been supporting some of our local favorites: Los Tios, El Patio, Sylvia’s Enchilada Kitchen and many more. If you’d like to make Mexican at home, start with a frozen mango margarita or jalapeño-mint margarita, and move on to easy enchilada casserole and a chopped salad with jalapeño ranch.
FIVE MORE THINGS TO MAKE THIS WEEK:
- Aperol Spritz
- Warm Pan-Roasted Nuts with Rosemary
- Red Pepper Romesco (for crudites or as a sauce for grilled meats or veggies)
- Homemade Granola
- Chocolate Popcorn Bark
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