I recently confessed on IG about the joy I get from cooking after a long day of work. Even though I share lots of food photos, I often fear people will find it annoying or think I’m gloating, but I’m just super passionate about it!
I stopped blogging about food, so social media has become my only outlet, but I’d like to start writing about it again. The landscape of food blogging has changed so much, and I don’t have the time nor interest to even try to do it professionally anymore.
Which has been holding me back. Why can’t I just talk about food the way I want to?
This is going sound weird, but when I saw this old video of Arnold, it inspired me…
I don’t want to be a bodybuilder… At. All. It’s not about that. It was about how freakin’ confident Arnold Schwarzenegger is teaching something he’s really passionate about.
I don’t know why, but that’s what stuck out when I saw it, and it inspired me.
So, here I am confidently sharing things I’m passionate about. 😊
This Week’s Dinners
It was a doozy of a week, but I got in that kitchen every day and cooked my brains out. Well, every day except Monday. More on that in a bit.
It was Sunday Steak night for us! I get most of my beef and pork from a local farm here in Maryland, and it’s fantastic.
This was a Denver steak which I seared in my cast iron and finished in the over. I served it with, what I call, “Drinken Mushrooms.” Normally I saute mushrooms (and sometimes onion) and add a healthy splash of bourbon. However, I happened to have some leftover mushroom gravy in the fridge from last week. So I added that as well, making it nice and rich.
One the side is a simple roasted sweet potato (the rest of the family had Idaho because–they boring) and broccoli I roasted with some salt and spices.
I’m so mad I didn’t take a picture! Monday was The Teens night to cook, and we made a Ginger Pork bowl over Rice. We make bowls like this a lot, so I’ll be sure to post about it in the future. Every time we make it, it’s a little different too. This one had green beans and carrots if I remember correctly.
Oh, boy, was this good!
The chicken was pretty simple, just spiced and pan-seared, but then I made a pan sauce with some scallions, stock, and butter. And that pan sauce went over the most luxurious mashed potatoes, which I need to take a moment to explain.
My new secret to the most perfect mashed potatoes is to cook the potatoes in milk! Ok, maybe you all knew this. I did NOT.
I use Idaho (baking) potatoes. Cover them with milk (skim is fine) until they are just covered. Bring to a low simmer (be careful–the milk will burn if you do this over too high of heat). Cook until the potatoes are fork-tender. Remove the potatoes and then rice them back into the milk. Add a pinch of salt, and BOOM! Perfect, lump-less mashed potatoes every time. I’m hooked on the technique.
The carrots and broccoli were roasted with a bit of oil, salt, and pepper. Easy peasy!
It may look like salmon, but it’s actually Steelnose Trout, and it’s our new favorite fish. They sell it at Aldi.
The Brussel sprouts I make are different every time too. These were roasted with sesame oil. Once they were nice and brown, I tossed them with a splash of maple syrup, soy sauce, and sesame seeds. They were delicious!
This is another, Oh boy! I made my first every vodka sauce, and I WILL be making it again.
I read a bunch of recipes online and then just decided to do my own thing. I tend to cook better on instinct. When I try to follow a recipe, it never works out. I’m not sure why. I get too overwhelmed. So, I just cook.
I decided to use what I had on hand for the sauce. So I started by sweating a finely diced red onion with some salt, garlic, and dried oregano. Then I add a can of small can tomato paste with water and a can of tomato sauce, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. I let that cook a bit, and then I added a very generous vodka splash. Let that cook down a bit more, and then I added a few splashes of heavy cream until it made the color I was expecting vodka sauce to be.
Then I added the cooked ravioli to the sauce and served it with Italian bread, which I probably ate half of. I just could stop dipping it in that sauce!
Tonight I had nothing planned. I do that a lot. Usually, we only meal plan Monday-Thursday unless we have a “Fancy Friday” in mind, which we didn’t because it’s going to be a busy weekend.
So when I got home from work, The Husband and I decided on burgers. Well, he requested, and I obliged. They’re pretty easy.
He likes his straight-up–just beef on the grill. I like to add chopped mushrooms to mine, which, I think, ironically, makes the “meatier.” Plus, it adds bulk and veggies, and I’m all about both.
For this burger, we topped it with spicy cheese and made broccoli and canned baked beans.
It was a great Friday night meal!
This Months Goals
Okay, this is what I miss most about blogging! I love journaling my goals, but I tend to abandon them without the blog because the accountability isn’t there.
Today was day 244 in my -At-Least-One-Spanish-Lesson-a-Day streak. This is the longest I have ever maintained a Spanish lesson streak! So, my goal is to maintain it this month.
It’s something The Husband (El Esposo!), and I are doing together. That’s why it’s been easier to maintain, I think.
Reduce Alcohol Consumption
I drink more now than ever, and I’m very aware of it. I enjoy making cocktails and sharing a bottle of wine with friends, but there are times I’m just drinking to drink. I can’t explain it. It can go from something special now-an-then to something I just do.
I have a dinner party next weekend but besides that nothing too special is going on. I don’t have to have a drink daily. We don’t need a bottle of wine with every dinner.
This one may sound weird, but have you ever gotten out of the habit of a certain food? I used to eat a lot of yogurt daily, coming up with fun concoctions. I miss it, and I think my gut does too.
Take Advantage of Spring Break!
I’m not going anywhere, and the kids are off as well. I was hoping to travel with them, but it’s so much harder now for so many reasons. Instead, I want to take The 10-Year-Old to an Art Musem and the Science Center. He still wants to be a Graphic Designer, and he absolutely LOVES the Science Center. So much for the left/right brain myth.
Anyway, those be the goals. Nothing too crazy, just doing what I can when I can. 😊