Sunday, August 8, 2010

Summer Meals

Manatee and I are getting down to the wire in terms of our wedding. On a rather ragged Saturday evening, we were up North and in the midst of wedding chaos. I had brought up two bags of fresh CSA produce and I was determined to eat it. I began chopping, sans recipe and sans plan. As a I mauled my way through the tomatoes (Manatee can't stand the way I cut things, apparently I am supposed to saw but I prefer powering through) a plan began to crystallize. I threw mushrooms, garlic and onions in a pan and let them cook for awhile. Then I added tomatoes and began to chop eggplant and zucchini. My timing with all of this was off because my mom had broiled chicken breasts which were already done. We sawed up the chicken and threw all of it into pans. As it simmered I realized one pan didn't have enough liquid. First I put in water and then realized that it would be bland so I dug through my parents' cupboards and found balsamic vinegar. I threw some of that in the pan and covered it.
At that point of course I realized I had too much liquid and this was going to turn into a mess fast. This time I scavenged in the fridge and found a head of ice berg lettuce. I tore it up and took the cobs of corn out of the boiling water and voila! A summer meal of chicken, tomatoes, onion, garlic, mushrooms, zucchini and egg plant over lettuce with corn on the cob on the side. :)
It sure beat the baseball hot dog and potato chips that we would have ended up eating had I not used cooking to calm my nerves.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

When the Going Gets Tough...

Use chicken sausage.

Yep, I said that.

I wish I had some amazing recipes to share with you but I have entered survival mode. While I did make an awesome pasta-free lasagna, I frankly don't have time to tell you about it. What I do have time to do is make an un-apologetic lovefest regarding Target brand (Archer Farms) organic chicken sausage.

My favorite kind is Chicken Apple and Manatee prefers Porcino Mushroom and Herb. Both are non-dairy and very healthy (you can eat 11 of them and still have less fat/calories than 1 brat!), and totally organic, so no chemicals or hard to pronounce ingredients. What I love about them is they are pre-cooked so you just need to reheat them, they're yummy and not so bad for you. You can eat them plain, pretend they are a brat and throw on sauerkraut and whatnot, or what I have been doing lately, is chopping them up and throwing them in with fresh veggies.

If you want to do the Italian thing, use the porcino mushroom ones with some fresh veggies (mushrooms, zucchini/summer squash, tomatoes, herbs, onions) and have them with some whole wheat spaghetti or use the apple ones with a peanut sauce. I have tossed them in with broccoli and whole wheat spaghetti and tonight I tossed them in with scallions, broccoli, zucchini and brown rice. The possibilities are endless.

When I have time I will share with you the pasta-free lasagna and my debacle with shredded cabbage (shudder!) but until then I am going to enjoy my sausage!