Sunday, June 26, 2011

Summer is finally here!

,As we head into the long weekend my thoughts turn to the lazy days of summers past. This will be my first summer in 3 years where I am working! I have been fortunate enough to spend the last 3 at home with my girlies, lazing in the sun, heading to the beach, enjoying popscicles while watching the clouds roll by. This year will be different and I'm ok with it. A little sad but none the less ok.

As the weather gets nicer the food in this house gets lighter and easier to prepare, well with the exception of the nachos for Monday ;) As always I love hearing what you and your families enjoy eating, so please share some of your favorite summer recipies and maybe we can inspire each other! Until next time....

Monday - Loaded Nachos
- For the adults in our house I take a chicken breast, cook it up dice and toss in Franks red hot. I layer jalapeno, and red peppers, green onion, fresh tomato and shredded cheese. On the kiddies side I take some of the afore mentioned chicken before I toss it and layer peppers, chicken and cheese.

Tuesday - Spinach salad with grilled shrimp from Cooking Light

Wednesday - Burgers and veggies and dip
....I recently decided to try wrapping my burger in a lettuce leaf instead of using a bun...delicious and fewer calories!

Thursday - Something on the road...IF I am organized enough I will make these Chicken Club wraps to eat while we drive

Friday, Saturday and Sunday we will be camping!


Sunday, June 19, 2011

Love. (And a meal plan.)

I am a lucky woman. Truly. I have a great Dad, who has always supported and loved me. He has taught me many valuable life lessons and stood by my side when I needed support (and all those times I didn't) He sometimes calls me to remind me how proud of me he is. He is a great Dad.

My daughters are pretty darn lucky too. They have a great Daddy. He loves them something fierce and does his best every day to make sure they know that.

So today I will raise my glass to all those great Dad's out there! Cheers!

Monday - Salmon cakes with Lemon Yogurt Dill

Tuesday - pulled pork, red onion, roasted garlic, green pepper pita pizzas

Wednesday - grilled chicken and pineapple sandwiches

Thursday - Shrimp and mango sweet thai chili skewers on the BBQ and rice

Friday - Southwestern chicken pasta salad

Saturday - TBD

Sunday - TBD

Indian Rub Grilled Chicken Breast with Coconut Rice and Caramelized Banana

You could also use this rub on boneless chicken breasts or thighs. If it's not BBQ season, you could also simply roast the chicken in the oven on a baking sheet. Serves 4.


Chicken Rub:
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. ground turmeric
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ground paprika
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp. olive oil
4 chicken breasts, bone-in and skin on (can use boneless, skinless if you prefer or thighs would be good as well, I think)

Coconut Rice:
2 cups long or short grain rice
3 cups cold water
Pinch cinnamon
1 cup light (low fat) coconut milk
4 tsp. sugar

Caramelized Bananas:
2 firm bananas, peeled and halved lengthwise
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon


Prepare rub: combine all spices, garlic and oil in a small bowl. Set aside.

Pre-heat grill or BBQ. Rub spice mixture onto chicken and place on grill. Bone-in chicken breast will take about 10 minutes per side. If using boneless, it will take less time.

Prepare the rice: Rinse rice in colander until water runs clear. Place all ingredients except sugar into a large saucepan. Bring to a boil , cover tightly, reduce heat and simmer 10-15 minutes or until all water has been absorbed. Add the sugar, cover the saucepan and place over very low heat for an additional 5 minutes.

Prepare bananas: sprinkle bananas with sugar and cinnamon. Preheat a non-stick skillet over high heat and spray lightly with oil. Cook the bananas for 2 minutes on each side or until the sugar has caramelized.

To serve: Place coconut rice on serving plates and top with the banana slices. Place the grilled chicken beside the rice and enjoy!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

I planned. And we followed it...

Well for a few days. Like Monday. AND Tuesday. And then, well, we had leftovers. I couldn't waste an entire pork tenderloin (I sometimes forget they come in twos....) So I took the one leftover and from that abandoned the weekly meal plan. But not really, because I left myself a buffer day this week. Oh *le sigh* I wish I could be better at this whole bloggy meal plan thing. So for the 2 of you that still read my blog, THANK YOU and here you go!

Monday - Sweet and Spicy Cashew Chicken Stirfry

Tuesday - Pork Tenderloin with cous cous and asparagus

Wednesday - Salmon with baby bok choy and rice

Thursday - Lime grilled chicken breasts with avocado salsa recipe courtesy of Canadian Living

Friday - tomato, mozzarella, basil and chicken salad

Saturday - Steak, baby potatoes and ceasar salad

Sunday - Whatever Mr M wants!

Sweet & Spicy Cashew Chicken Stir-Fry
Serves 4-6

½ cup ketchup
4 tsp. soy sauce
½ tsp. salt
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
3 tbsp sugar
1 ½ tsp sesame oil
½ tsp cayenne pepper
½ cup chicken broth

2 tbsp. cornstarch
½ tsp sugar
¼ tsp. salt
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 small onion
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts sliced
¼ cup oil
2-3 tbsp minced fresh ginger
1 red/green or yellow pepper, or all 3!
2 carrots diced
2 cups snow peas
1 ½ cups cashews
toasted sesame seeds

Combine sauce & set aside
In a bowl combine corn starch, sugar & salt, add chicken and toss
Heat Wok or deep frying pan, add oil and heat to hot
Add chicken, ginger garlic & onion
Stir until chicken is opaque ( 1min…)
Add peppers & carrots stir 2-3 minutes
Add peas & sauce, cook until sauce boils
Add noodles (if using, can also use rice)
Add cashews & sprinkle with sesame seeds

Pork Tenderloin Rub

4 cloves minced garlic
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp white pepper
1/4 tsp thyme
1 tbsp olive oil
1 lb pork tenderloin

Mix garlic, salt, pepper and thyme in a small bowl. Rub over tenderloin, wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least 4 hours.

Bake at 350 for 45 to 50 minutes.

Tomato, Mozzarella and cherry tomato salad
Cold Grilled chicken
Fresh Mozzarella
Fresh Basil
Garlic Salt
Balsamic Vinegar

Cut tomatoes, chicken, mozzarella into small bite size pieces
Grill the chicken the night before…
Grape work well…If using regular tomatoes, remove the seeds so its not too juicy.
Combine with fresh basil - you can leave the basil in leaves or chop, depending on your taste.
Add garlic salt & pepper to taste
Add enough balsamic vinegar to coat, and have some at the bottom

It is best if you make it a few hours ahead.
You have to taste it and add whatever it needs more of before you serve it. I served it with slices of baguette, but it could stand on its own or go with pita or anything else you have around. Add pasta if you want it to be heartier… but the pasta will suck up a lot of balsamic… so you will need to add more.