Friday, January 20, 2012

A Week in my Kitchen

This week, I got to spend time in the kitchen. This week's kitchen-time has been all about making "real" food, but I have some other, not-suitable-for-dinner recipes lined up that I want to try. So, here are some of my adventures from this week. Nothing fancy, mind you, but it was good food, and it filled me up.

On Monday night, I made my very first pizza from scratch! I got the recipe for the dough here from Annie's Eats, and I loved it. I also loved that her instructions involve the use of a stand mixer (which I just got for Christmas!!).The recipe makes enough for two pizzas, so I have the other half in my freezer for the next time I'm hankerin' for some good pizza. The toppings are pretty simple, as I chose to make my favorite pizza. [For future reference, it's Hawaiian pizza. :) Plenty of pineapple and ham.]

*By the way, the pizza also reheats well.

This probably doesn't really count as a kitchen adventure, but it is something that I whipped (well, blended) up several times this week. What you see in this cup is my version of a green smoothie. What's in it, you ask? Well, it's pretty simple. Here's my go-to recipe:

Basic Green Smoothie (yields about 4 cups)
     -a few handfuls of baby spinach
     -1 large orange, peeled and segmented
     -1 banana, cut into pieces
     -about 1 cup of blueberries
     -1/2 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
     -1 cup skim milk
     -a few handfuls of ice cubes.

Just throw it all in the blender, and start it up! This usually makes a LOT of smoothie. We're talking about 4 cups worth here, depending on the size of your fruit and the amount of ice you use. I've been separating it into two 16-ounce servings, with one for right then and the other going into the refrigerator for the next day, but you could easily split it into four servings and either share them or freeze/refrigerate them for later.

*Don't worry, you don't actually taste the spinach. It just makes everything green and adds tons of vitamins. I'm actually hoping that by drinking these, I will get over this miserable cold faster!

This was tonight's dinner. I didn't make the pesto spread, but aside from that, I got the recipe for this Turkey Bagel Burger from The Pioneer Woman, aka Ree Drummond. Have I mentioned how much I love her? Because I do. I am enamored with her. And even though she uses entirely too much butter (have I mentioned that I think butter is kind of disgusting?), I am convinced that she can do no wrong in the kitchen. The second season of her show on Food Network premiered last Saturday, and I missed it because I am a dum-dum. For some reason, I forgot that when she said it would be on at 10 a.m., that she was referring to Eastern time. For me, it was on at 9 a.m. Alas, I missed it. But I will not be missing it tomorrow morning! I set several alarms just in case. (Side note: The Pioneer Woman was also on Paula's Best Dishes this evening. Paula and Ree on the same show, in the same episode? I was simply beside myself.) Anyway, before I let my love for the Pioneer Woman get me sidetracked, I was talking about my dinner. A simple turkey burger (recipe linked above) on an everything bagel (I used a Thomas Bagel-Thin), with the toppings I had in my refrigerator. The mess on the right side of the plate is just some onions, mushrooms, and green pepper that I cooked up.

In other Pioneer Woman news, I had ordered her cookbook last week, and UPS brought it to me on Tuesday! I was so excited. I am definitely itching to try my hands at making her cinnamon rolls, along with just about everything else she included (most of it with drastic reductions in the amount of butter used). But just like any other reasonable woman, I have priorities. And those cinnamon rolls are definitely a priority!

Tuesday night, I made a baked pasta dish from the Taste of Home website. I'm still undecided about whether or not I liked it enough to share it. I'll probably make that decision after I reheat some for tomorrow's dinner, and we'll see if it's photogenic enough to post about.

After just those three recipes, I am set on food for quite awhile once you factor in that I eat simple sandwiches every day for lunch. Yay for having a full freezer!

*Please pardon the pictures in this post. They were all taken with my cell phone (not the smart variety).

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