Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Chicken Fried Rice

Dan went to the Phillies game tonight so I watched some Sex and the City and then I made fried rice. I had leftover rice from Friday and yesterday I had asked Dan to throw on some plain chicken in addition to the BBQ. When I had leftover rice few weeks ago, I stumbled upon this recipe from a wonderful Asian food blog I found using the Google Image search function. Dan made it last time (I did the prep work! And drank!) and it was awesome. Better than take-out (but not better than Hibachi!) and super easy. The only thing I do different is I omit the oyster sauce (because I never have any) and I add sesame seeds and green onions. Oh yeah, and this time I used grilled chicken so I just added it at the end instead of frying it like the recipes instructs and it worked fine. I really hate cutting raw chicken into cubes and I especially HATE frying it in oil. It has nothing to do with salmonella or the calories. It has to do with being time consuming and the fact that I am usually not in the mood to be burned by 1000 deg oil. But that's just me.

And on a kind of unrelated note, I bought this awesome platter from Marshall's today for just $12.99!

Don't you just want to marry it? I do.

One last thing, I had to use my Dad's camera since Dan took ours to the Phillies game and I just noticed the date and time are in the corners of both of these pictures and it is really annoying to me. He better come home with some fucking awesome pictures. Carry on... my wayward son.

Monday, April 27, 2009

BBQ Chicken and New Potato Salad

I absolutely LOVE this weather! I wore shorts and a tank top to bed last night for the first time since October and slept with only a sheet and I was in my glory. I'm really feeling this taste of summer so yesterday I made Ina Garten's new potato salad. It is my favorite potato salad ever, ever. She has come up with this excellent method of boiling the potatoes until barely fork tender and then draining them in a colander and then placing a kitchen towel over them for about 20 minutes. This steams the potatoes perfectly so they don't fall apart when you mix in the mayo and other goodness. I will never make potatoes for potato salad any other way.

We served the potato salad as a side to go along with the BBQ chicken breast Dan made on the grill and boiled green beans with garlic butter.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Our Gluttonous Weekend Breakfast

I bought an abundance of red potatoes at my produce place so considering the breakfast potatoes you buy in the store take forever to cook in the morning, I thought that I would roast these potatoes the night before so we could have them for breakfast on Saturday. The picture below doesn't really do them justice as they look burnt. I can assure you that after Dan heated them up in a skillet for a few minutes, they were just the perfect amount of crispy outside and soft inside.

I also purchased the ridiculously fattening yet delicious Jimmy Dean sausage. Yeah, the stuff that comes in a roll. We bought the maple syrup ones this time but even though they were a little too sweet for my taste, it didn't stop me from eating both of the patties Dan made for me. I am actually partial to their hot sausage, although I really wish I wasn't partial to any of them to be honest. In reality, I should be eating these, which are actually really awesome but a little pricey (Excuses!).

Friday, April 24, 2009

Ina's Salmon

We picked up some (2 lbs!) of salmon yesterday because I've been jonesin' for it. I was thinking of what to do with it and was about to go the typical dill, lemon and butter route when I recalled an episode of Barefoot Contessa where she made some awesome looking Asian grilled salmon.

I know this piece looks like crap. It's because we cooked it as one big slab and then cut it. I think we would have made out better if we sliced it before grilling. Presentation wise anyway.

But on to more important things. I went simple with the sides and served it with white rice and steamed broccoli. It was the best grilled salmon we've ever had and I think it would definitely work just as well if you baked it in the oven. It also pairs well with Kendall Jackson Sauvignon Blanc. I should know. I drank plenty of it tonight.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

"Homemade" Chicken Cheese Steaks

Do me a favor. Buy these. Today.

Get ready for another easy, lazy meal. Lazy because I don't do anything. (No really. You'll see.) "Homemade" chicken cheesesteaks. And my god are they good. Better than any chicken cheesesteak from any takeout restaurant. The best part is, you control the fat content AND you can be sure no one passed gas on it (anyone see that YouTube Domino's video? Who knew it was a federal offense to fuck with someone's food?)

Anyway, get that visual out of your head quickly because you are about to watch something beautiful appear before your very eyes. First you start with the peppers and onions.

Then in a separate skillet, you add the block of chicken-y goodness.

And cook until... cooked through. God, I am bad at this!

That is Dan's hand because at this point I am just snapping pictures and drinking an Ecto Cooler and vodka.

Just kidding! It's actually a limeade and vodka but wouldn't it be awesome if it really was Ecto Cooler? It seriously does look pretty radioactive. It's definitely not Simply Limeade by any means. It's the cheap crap.

Where was I? Oh yes. Chicken cheese steaks.

Next you simply add American cheese to the top of the meat and let melt for a about a minute or two.

Then Dan likes to get fancy and place the roll on top and then he does this cool thing where he flips it over with the meat inside. I usually just sit there and sip my Ecto Cooler.

And then Ta-da! There you have it. Better than take-out (and I try to pretend, healthy) chicken cheesesteaks. God this post was long. Sorry!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Grilled London Broil and Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

See? I told you I'd be showing you alot of roasted tomatoes.

I'm so happy the weather cooperated today so I could shove Dan outside to grill this lovely London Broil I marinated in soy sauce, garlic and rosemary last night.

I served it with a green salad with the leftover bleu cheese I purchased to use on the burgers from Friday. Note to everyone: Never buy bleu cheese. Because you will eat it. Everyday. Until it's gone.

Monday, April 20, 2009

French Onion Soup and Roasted Plum Tomatoes

Don't worry. No Burger King today. Instead, I thought the weather was just begging for me to make french onion soup. And I don't normally argue with the weather. I take a semi-homemade approach to french onion soup and so far it has turned out fabulously. I just saute some onions, garlic and fresh thyme in butter until the onions get nice and caramelized, then add in a can of Progresso french onion soup and about a little less than a can of beef broth. Season with plenty of pepper and bring to a boil. Then ladle into oven safe crocks (not the shoe), and cover with croutons. Then I add either a slice of Swiss cheese or use a mix of shredded baby swiss and parmesan, like I did today. Either way, the soup turns out delicious and is seriously one of the fastest meals I can make on a weeknight.

And oh yeah, I had some plum tomatoes that I didn't want to go bad so I seasoned them with some olive oil and chopped garlic and baked them in the oven for about 3o minutes then topped them with some fresh basil. Really, really tasty. I am obsessed lately with roasted tomatoes so expect more pictures to come. Plus, I'm so excited because I just bought a basil plant today at the supermarket. I hope my cat doesn't eat it but I guarantee she will.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Keepin' It Real

On our way home from Dan's mom's house at 2:00 am last night, we were starving so we went to... WAIT FOR IT... Burger King. It was too good to be ashamed. And if you ever thought that Burger King would be empty at 2:00 am, think again.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Spring Fever

Guys? I made a balsamic reduction today. Like for real. Who am I? Anyways, today we wanted to cook outside since it was so gorgeous out. I found a delicious burger recipe from The Pioneer Woman that I've been meaning to try and it was seriously just the ticket for tonight. Except we cheated and bought store bought pre-made burgers. But they were the ones behind the butcher counter! And we had to ask for them! So I tell myself so I sleep better at night. I had purchased some new potatoes last week at an absolutely AMAZING produce place called Buck A Bag. So I decided to make some roasted rosemary potatoes along with our burgers. And I have to tell you, although the photo may look delicious, they were really sub-par. Don't get me wrong, they were edible, but I plan to try to create something different with the leftovers tomorrow. Oh and before I go, the balsalmic reduction was made for these completely fantastic grilled portobello mushrooms that were the greatest discovery I have made in some time. And I make a lot of discoveries. People (Alisha and Gwen) be prepared to enjoy them at every cookout this summer. (Is there anyway to put pictures and words, pictures and then words because I haven't figure out how to do that. Help Gwen.)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

My First Turkey Stock Attempt

Yesterday I decided to attempt to make turkey stock out of the drumstick bones from Easter. I put the bones in a large stock pot and covered with water. Then I added onions, garlic, celery, thyme and whole peppercorns and let it cook for about 5 hours. The house smelled wonderful! When I tasted the stock it tasted a little watery to me, so I got nervous and added a bouillon cube. I don't know if it really made a difference but it made me feel better. I let the stock cool and then I refrigerated overnight. When I came home today, I was so excited to see that it was actually "gelly". And I'm pretty sure that it is supposed to look that way. I think I actually succeeded in making stock! Please don't tell anyone I added a bouillon cube though because now I regret it.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Turkey Corn Chowder

Aunt Renee sent me home with two massive turkey legs from our Easter dinner so this morning I shredded them but then had no idea what to do with it. I decided to make Turkey Corn Chowder and I used this recipe from Cooking Light. I didn't use the jalepeno pepper and instead added about 1 cup diced red pepper, used turkey instead of chicken and added some diced new potatoes. I also added some heavy cream which I guess made it not so light afterall!

Easter Lamb Chops

I love this time of year for many reasons, but one them is definitely because lamb is more readily available in the supermarket. We picked up 2 packs of these lamb chops this week and cooked one for Easter and then froze the other. Dan pan seared these in a pan with olive oil and seasoned with chopped rosemary and fresh ground pepper. Then he transferred them to the grill and cooked for about 10 minutes. They were delicious and perfectly rare in the center.