Monday - LAZY Soup
No but really... I'm having a lazy day today! I decided yesterday while running errands that the weekend was WAY too short so I decided to pretend today is still sort of the weekend. I made plans for after-work mani's and pedi's with a friend, and decided dinner should be SUPER easy. Trader Joe's makes these AMAZING organic boxed soups. All different kinds! I picked up the tomato and roasted red pepper soup, a loaf of delicious-looking artisan bread, and a bag of salad. Ta-Da! Organic delicious dinner with NO COOKING and NO CLEAN UP and sometimes we all need a day like that! Your kids will never know the difference, but they will notice you're in a great mood for a Monday!
Tuesday - Deconstructed Chicken Pot Pie
This is great comfort food for cold weather, but chicken pot pie can be a bit of a pain. A couple years ago I started making what I call "deconstructed pot pie" and it's been a big hit! Make a chicken pot pie filling stew in a slow cooker, and when there's about 20 minutes left on the timer, pop some Pillsbury biscuits in the oven! Serve the pot pie stew in crocks or bowls, with tons of biscuits on the side for dipping and scooping. It's SO easy, there's very little clean up, and you get that awesome pot pie taste! For the stew, I use a bag of frozen veggies (peas, corn, carrots, onions), a couple of chicken breasts diced up, 2 cans of condensed cream of chicken soup, and a diced potato.
Wednesday - One Pot Alfredo
This recipe is a Claire-Original because I absolutely hate washing pots and will do anything to avoid it... Including creating new recipes! This is an awesome alfredo that does NOT require boiling the pasta! In a large saute or sauteuse pan with a lid, saute diced chicken breasts or tenderloins in EVOO, salt, and pepper. When cooked through and just slightly browned on the outside, add 8 oz of uncooked rotini (or similar) pasta, 2 cups chicken stock, one can alfredo sauce, and about 1 cup of shredded Italian cheese (parm, mozzerella, asiago... any kind will work great, or a mix is perfect!). Stir, put the lid on, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes until the pasta is cooked! At about 15 minutes, add in broccoli, peas, or chopped asparagus (depending on which you like best! I've had it with all). Cook another few minutes for the veggies, and boom!
Thursday - Open Face Meatball Subs
Since I'll have leftover bread from Monday that will be getting a little crisp (read: stale) by Thursday, this recipe will be perfect! Slice long, thick pieces of a crusty bread, and pop them in the oven for just a couple minutes to toast. I'll make the meatballs and the sauce ahead of time, and I'll just put them on the toasted bread and back in the oven to heat. Topped with shredded Italian cheese (leftover from Wednesday's dinner). Bake on a foil-covered baking sheet (to prevent melted cheese from wrecking your baking sheet) for about 12 minutes until warmed through and cheese melted.
This list, by one of my all-time favorite designers Kate Spade, is 31 Things to Do Before December 31st!
I'm posting it NOW because let's be honest, it will take more than just one month to do all these things!
So it makes a nice little November/December fun to-do list!
I know... I know... Halloween isn't over yet and I'm already thinking about Thanksgiving!
But to me, the time between November 1 and January 2 is truly the BEST time of the year, and I wish it lasted longer!
People are kinder to each other during the holidays. People are more giving and often in better moods. I love everything about this time of year!
So yeah, from here on out, expect lots of holiday cheer and fun from me! Be careful... it's infectious :)
So anyway, if you've read my blog before you know I LOVE to cook! So Thanksgiving is like the SUPERBOWL for me!
I'm thinking this year I might spend a bit more on a turkey than I usually do. See, I got an email from Williams-Sonoma about the turkeys they sell, and after looking into, I think this might be the way to go!
Their turkeys come from a family-owned turkey ranch in California, where the birds are very well-cared for. They're organic, free range turkeys so you know you won't be getting any unhealthy antibiotics and the meat will be heartier!
They're pricey, but since I can order and pay now and have the bird delivered on November 26th, right before Thanksgiving, it actually works out great! When the time comes to buy all the other food and ingredients for Thanksgiving, I won't have to worry about the bird too. It's like paying for Thanksgiving in small chunks, spread out over a month.
Take a look at this video about the farm:
To learn more, click here!
This is so cool! Our friends down in DC at WMZQ had Jennifer Nettles in the studio with them this morning!
Check out this funny video from Aly and Boxer of Jennifer reading the traffic report!
Maybe next time Mark is out and I fill in for traffic, I'll give that southern accent a try! It makes horrible traffic sound a lot prettier, doesn't it? Might help you handle the bad news!
Monday - Thai Soup and Leftovers
Over the weekend I went to the BEST thai restaurant I have been to in years! The portions were huge and I've got quite a bit of leftovers, so I'll be eating those but also making Tom Kai Gai soup. It's actually VERY easy to make, and if you use tofu instead of chicken it's even easier and faster!
Tuesday - Winter Squash and Meatballs
I'm going to loosely follow this Paleo recipe. I'll cut a few winter squashes into chunks and roast them for about 10 minutes at 450 degrees, just to soften them a little. Then I'll put them in a food processor with chopped onion and garlic, and with one can of diced tomatoes and some Italian seasonings. I'll make homemade turkey meatballs, and press the veggies and meatballs into a cast iron skillet (like in the original recipe). I'll probably serve with extra marinara sauce on the side!
Wednesday - Spice Rubbed Roast Chicken
Wednesday I'm practicing for Thanksgiving! I read about this amazing- sounding spice rubbed turkey recipe in Women's Health and it really sounds great! But... will it come out great? I'm going to practice with a small chicken and get a feel for it, so I know whether or not to use it on the big day! Since it's spicy, I'll want to balance it with some sweeter side dishes. I'll make baked sweet potatoes (topped with plain non-fat Greek yogurt) and a mixed green salad with gorgonzola cheese and dried cranberries
Thursday - Lasagna Spaghetti Squash
I found this recipe on Pinterest and it looks crazy-amazing! These photos are insane so here's hoping I can get mine to look like this! I can't speak for anyone else, but whenever I make spaghetti squash, it always seems that one squash is juuuust enough for two people. Pretty perfect!
Friday - Slow Cooker Chipotle Beef Fajitas
I'm really liking the looks of this recipe... Mostly because EVERYTHING on it, minus the beef, is already in my house! Can't get cheaper than that, my friends! Plus slow cooker means it cooks itself, and you use a crock pot liner there is really NOTHING to clean! It looks very simple, but maybe a bit spicy so cut the number of chipotle peppers in half if you're cooking for kids.