Sunday, January 29, 2017

2016 in Review: New Recipes

I was reminiscing with my college housemates on the food we used to eat and how none of us eat any of the same things anymore.  (Which isn't *too* surprising as college students eat a log of ramen, etc., but we also made our own bread and cooked from scratch too.)  It seems as though I am constantly revamping our food and food preferences.  Sometimes the changes are drastic (i.e. GAPS) and permanent (Celiac), and others are not so permanent (corn, dairy).  Since moving to Washington, we have cut back on the amount of meat that we eat.  Partly this is due to not having a half a cow tucked away in our freezer and partly due to finances.  I try to have every other meal a vegetarian one.  Mr. F. is also trying to avoid dairy (except for butter and cream), and so I look for meals that are either dairy free or have the option to easily be so.  (I.e. here is your dairy-free version honey, now the kids and I will load ours with grated cheese and sour cream.)

Last year, the unintended theme was: crockpot.  This year, it seams to be: salads.  Below are meals that were new to us this year and made it to the table around 3 times so far.

{Images are from the linked sources below}

Southwestern Hash: I don't think this even requires a recipe since I don't actually follow the recipe that inspired me.  I usually saute' an onion and green chili together in some oil and 1/2 teaspoon cumin.  I add 2 pounds of some semi-cooked yukon potatoes using this method.  When potatoes are done, I add some drained canned black beans and saute' until warm.  At the end, I add a cup of cut up cherry tomatoes, avocado if available, grated cheese, and 3 scallions chopped.

Slow cooker beef on rice: This isn't going to win any awards, but it is easy and tasty.  All the requirements needed for me to add it to our rotation.  After cooking, we thicken up the sauce using a roux.  In a separate pan, melt 1/2 cup butter and add 1/2 cup of flour.  Cook a bit until it doesn't taste floury anymore and then add the liquid from the crockpot.  Simmer until it has thickened and then add the beef back in.  As this is the only way we have ever prepared it, I can not vouch for the recipe as written.

Chicken BLT chopped salad:  My kids are now to the age where I can serve salads as a main dish, and they eat it.  It is a glorious thing.  I usually defrost some already cooked chicken for this.  I like the dressing but my kids prefer ranch, and Mr. F does whatever he feels like that day (not being a fan of any lemon dressing.)

Confetti rice and bean salad: this is a great salad to take when camping or on a road trip.  We like to eat it with tortilla chips.  I also add tomatoes and feta cheese.

Steak salad: another main dish salad that I like, especially the dressing.  I just use regular lettuce and whatever sort of steak I can find on sale.

Potato Salad: I never used to make potato salad because it was so time consuming.  However, I discovered that I could cook the potatoes and the eggs together in the pressure cooker for 3 minutes on high (quick release afterwards) and both came out perfectly!  Suddenly, it was a really easy salad to make.  Mr. F. likes green onions in his potato salad so I will probably add them in the future.  Also, I make half of this and always add more eggs (6 or 7) than it calls for.  I also never use all of the dressing.  Also, I don't include the olives.

Grilled Chicken and Lemon Salad: Another great salad for camping.  You can bring marinated chicken to quickly grill at the campsite and then add it to the already prepped vegetables.  We never use the zucchini and always add extra peas and peppers.  You can broil the chicken too, if you don't have a grill handy at home.

O.k. so those are the new recipes that have been made at least three times.  There were some new recipes that we liked that I can see repeating in the future, but we have only made them once this year.  So, I am including them as honorable mentions:

Lime coconut chicken
Roasted garlic beef sandwiches
Crockpot white bean chili (dairy free potentially)
Artichoke gratin toasts. Full disclosure.  Kids did not like them, but Mr. F. and I did.
White bean, chard, pancetta pot pies.  Made this with kale as I don't like chard, and bacon since I never buy pancetta.  Will try a version without bacon soon.  Also, I just made this as a stew and then cooked some biscuits separately (to place on top or beneath, or as a side.)
Black bean nachos.

Have you discovered any new recipes lately?  Or do you want to share some family favorites?  I am always, always looking for new recipes.

1 comment:

RFamily said...

Yes! I am super excited that you posted this. Esp the salad recipes. On the steak salad do you use the steakhouse mustard dressing that Deb posted at the bottom?


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