If you could see my library of un-finished blog posts you’d see about eleven “drafts.” I start a thought and can’t seem to finish any of them. Is that what they call “writer’s block”?
In a sincere effort to help me, my husband has said the past few weeks as he’s leaving for work, “So you going to write today?” Ha. He’s so sweet. But I cringe at the thought lately. Maybe because it’s something I think I’m supposed to do that makes it hard sometimes. Hm. Maybe that’s for another post, for another time.
So, with a little nudge to help me tonight, Ryan said to me, “Just post something. Even if it’s just about recipes or whatever…”
And that’s just what I did.
I will not be starting a blog about recipes and food (although I really love reading such blogs!) but I needed to start back up somewhere.
Without further ado, here are a few of the recipes I have made that we love, are oh-so-delicious (and mostly simple!).
Sweet and Sour Chicken with Fried Rice
I started making this meal back when Ryan and I were dating and I was living above my older sister, Akaycia. She gave this recipe to me when I asked what I should make him for dinner. There would often be leftovers so I would send them home with him to Ottawa. One time, he made the 1.5 hour drive home to his place, got out of the car, and dropped the leftovers on the pavement, spilling it all over the place. He later told me that he considered scooping it back up because it’s.just.that.good. But he decided against it because the amount of gravel mixed in.
And here’s Akaycia’s recipe for delicious Fried Rice:
-3 cups cooked white rice (a day old is best because it’s dry)
-3tbs. sesame oil
-1 cup peas, frozen or canned
-1 cup cut carrots, frozen or canned
-1 small yellow onion, chopped
-2 eggs, scrambled and cooked
-1/4 cup soy sauce
On medium high, heat up rice in a big pot. In another pan, heat oil. Add onion (and peas and carrots if frozen. If canned, wait until end to add). Stir fry until tender. Add to big pot of rice and stir. Add soy sauce and stir. Lastly, scramble 2 eggs and add to rice. Serve nice and hot along side the chicken!
Pita Bread Pizza
Now, I am all for easy and that’s what this meal is. It’s my go-to dinner when I don’t want to “make something.” We don’t buy frozen pizza anymore since I started making these myself. They are way better.
-I buy a package of 6 Large Pitas from Food Basics for $1.79 (that’s cheap!) and throw them right in the freezer.
-When I’m ready to make a pizza, I take one out and put it, frozen and all, onto my pizza stone.
-Sauce: I think it’s a waste of money to buy special pizza sauce. Tomato sauce that you use for pasta does the trick! (Ragu, Prego, no-name-brand…it all works) Lately, I’ve been using Red Hot hot sauce, salsa, BBQ sauce, or Red Hot Bollywood Indian Sauce (Ryan loves this stuff).
-Toppings: Onions, peppers, chicken, salami, pepperoni, hot peppers, cheese, jalapeños (whatever we have in the fridge!)
-Cook at 400 for about 20 minutes.
*Something I really like about this pizza is the crust is crunchy and isn’t gooey like thicker crusts can be.
Ruthie’s Chicken Wings (A.K.A Papa Ramsdell’s Chicken Wings)
Warning: This sauce is so good you will want to drink it. Seriously.
A lovely lady named Ruthie made me a wonderful recipe book for our wedding. In it are little treasures and I am going to give you one of them right now. **This recipe is my go-to dinner for guests. It’s SO GOOD!!**
Recipe…(along with my changes based on what I buy):
-Pre-heat oven to 400F
-2 dozen chicken wings (I use 12 drum sticks. They have more meat on them!)
-1 1/2 cups mild wing sauce (I skip this, actually!)
-2tbs. honey BBQ sauce
-2tbs. miracle whip (I just use regular Hellmann’s mayo)
-1/2 cup maple syrup
-1/3 cup honey
-1/4 cup buffalo sauce (**I put 1 cup buffalo sauce or Red Hot hot sauce**)
-2 tbs. vinegar
-1/2 cup brown sugar
If you are using wings, follow the regular recipe: Put frozen wings into 9×13 baking dish, cover, and cook till tender 1- 1 1/2 hours. In a medium mixing bowl combine all ingredients and set aside. Remove cover and coat in sauce and cook 1-2 hours or until the wings are glazed and the sauce is cooked down.
What I do with drum sticks: Put thawed drum sticks into 9×13 baking dish. Pour olive oil over meat and sprinkle salt and pepper on. Bake for about an hour, flipping over the drum sticks half way through. Pour sauce over after an hour of baking. Bake another 30 minutes to an hour. The longer you bake them the more tender they get and the meat falls right off. Delish.
Carrot Soup (I LOVE THIS SOUP!!)
You may be thinking: Carrot soup? Hmm…
So before you judge it, try it. Oh my. I make a pot of this and we eat it for 2-3 days. It’s so, so good and healthy. The special ingredient in it is hot sauce!
Click here for the recipe.
A few pointers:
*I skip the bacon. I would totally use it if I had some pre-made but I don’t take the time to make bacon just for this soup. It’s perfectly perfect without it. I also have never followed the recipe in it’s entirety. So work with it and make it what you want!
*Also…this one takes a bit of time. But I’ve been making it every other week or so and have learned what to *not* do to save time:
1.) Don’t peel the carrots. TOO much peeling for my liking. Just scrub those babies! The last two time’s I’ve made this soup I just washed and scrubbed the carrots well and it turned out exactly the same.
2.) If you just have a regular blender like me, add broth as soon as the carrots are tender then puree. My blender isn’t powerful enough. It needs the broth. Oh how I would love one of these for all the blending I do. Buuut…I think it’s a little out of my price range.
*One more thing: we always eat it with buttery grilled cheese.
Molly’s Roasted Potatoes
My good friend Molly gave me this recipe and I’ve made these multiple times. I always seem to make them with Ruthie’s Chicking Wings (recipe above). You can dip the potatoes in the sauce.
Here’s the recipe!
1/8 cup olive oil
1tbs. minced garlic
1/2tsp. dill weed
1/4tsp. crushed red pepper (I just use 1/2tsp. like everything else)
4 to 5 large potatoes, cubed
1 green pepper, diced
1 onion, diced
Put all the spices and olive oil in a large bowl or zip lock bag. Add potatoes, green pepper and onion. Stir or shake around. Then dump on a cookie sheet to bake.
Bake at 475F for 20-30 minutes
Butter, Honey, Brown Sugar and Walnut Salmon (with rice)
We like fish. It’s just so delicious and healthy for you. I have no schedule with meals so we eat it when I buy it and feel like making it. It’s usually one of our “nicer” meals. So we eat it like maybe every other week?
I made this one up and it’s soo good! I am insecure with my fish cooking skills but this is so good I actually made it for company once.
-Start rice ahead of time! As you know, rice takes a while. Good rice that is.
-Pre-heat oven to 400F.
-Grease a 9×13 pan with butter
-Lay 4 pieces of (thawed out) salmon on the greased pan.
-In a microwavable bowl: melt butter, honey, brown sugar. Stir. Add chopped walnuts.
*You’re probably wondering how much of those things are needed. I don’t know! I have never measured them. I’d say about a half stick of butter, 3 T of brown sugar and maybe 1/4 cup of honey and 1/4 cup of walnuts. I’d say start out with less and then add more. That’s what I did.
-Pour over salmon
-Bake for about 10-15 minutes. (I usually cook mine for a little longer, though.)
Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili
Aren’t sweet potatoes SO GOOD? We loved this meal…and who doesn’t like a things that you make and can eat for a few days after because there’s so much of it? Yeah. We’re totally left-overs people.
Click here for the recipe.
I don’t follow any recipe when I make regular chili. I just throw it all in the crock pot, turn it on, and let it do it’s thing for a good 6-8 hours or so!
Ingredients (I don’t drain any of the canned goods.):
-1 pound of ground beef or chicken, cooked
-2 can of black beans
-1 can of corn
-1 can of kidney beans
-1 can of can of tomato sauce
-1 can of chick peas
-1 red pepper diced
-1 green pepper diced
-1 red onion diced
-1 can of diced tomatoes
-Some hot sauce
-Some chili powder
-Some salt and pepper
– A tbs. of minced garlic
**If you don’t have hours to let it sit and cook in the crock pot, I suggest you cook the peppers and onions first and then add them to make sure they are tender.**
Serve with corn chips, sour cream and cheese on top!
Easiest Peanut Butter Cookies EVER (And best, I’d have to say)
These are a no-brainer. Everyone probably knows about these! Aren’t they amazing? And they are Gluten free and Dairy free!
-1 cup creamy peanut putter
-1/2 cup sugar
When you go to mix this type of cookie dough, don’t use your Kitchen Aid, just use a spoon and your arm muscles. It’s too small of a batch to use a Kitchen Aid and even if you did double or triple it, it’s a type of batter that is super sticky and it’s annoying to get off the mixer thing (there’s probably a name for it?).
-Roll into little balls and press with a fork for that signature peanut butter cookie look.
-Sprinkle extra sugar on top, if you’d like. I choose to skip this as I don’t find it’s needed.
-Cook at 350 for about 15 minutes.
THE BEST Cinnamon Buns ON EARTH (a.k.a Vanilla Pudding Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting)
I’ve had lots of cinnamon buns in my day and these have proven themselves to be the BEST ONES EVER. Now, these take time. So don’t expect to have them whipped up in 10 minutes. But they are worth every minute of hard work.
Click here for the recipe.
Well, that’s it for now! I hope some of these recipes make their way into your kitchens.
(And thanks, husband, for pushing me to just write something. )