Every once in a blue moon (the husband would likely argue it's much less frequently than that, even), I get the urge to cook. Once upon a time, I cooked all the time, but moving to SC, working full time, and then mothering full time has almost zapped the urge right out of me. So it's big news when I finally get into the kitchen and make something more than hummus and pita or the occasional crock pot roast (which really doesn't count, it's so easy).
This week, perhaps because the husband is away most nights studying and I need to kill more time than usual with Toddler J, has been particularly fruitful in the kitchen. First, I made steak and mashed potatoes with a special (read: I made it up) apple cider gravy. The gravy was a bit too salty (the result of indecision) but still tasty. Even J ate it. And cooking steak for myself meant I got to cook it exactly as long as I wanted (read: done with NO PINK!) without having the husband hovering over me, complaining about how I'm "ruining" the meat. Huzzah!
First, I made chicken and black beans with rice. I had chicken that had to be used and with a little cumin and chili powder and a can of black beans, it became yummy. I also made guacamole, which J loved (though I think he really just likes to be able to eat tortilla chips dipped in anything), my signature recipe: avocado, tomato, red onion, lime juice, and salt. El fin!
Next, it was a blockbuster day: pumpkin apple and pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, no-dairy squash casserole (my CSA zucchini made FIVE cups chopped, people. And I added patty pan, which was great.), and beef broccoli. I've never made beef broccoli before, though I've had it lots, of course, and all the recipes wanted me to use sherry or oyster sauce or other exotic ingredients to marinate the beef, but I'm not fond of marinades for quick cooking. So I made up my own recipe which used soy sauce, tamari, beef broth, and cornstarch combined with thinly sliced beef, a teaspoon of chopped garlic, and a bag of frozen broccoli. Couldn't have been easier or tastier!
Tomorrow I've got leftovers galore to finish, so I'll take a break. But later in the week, I see jalapeno poppers and fresh green beans with lemon in my future!