Picnics and potlucks and parties, oh my! Got to love the start of the social season. I’m so looking forward to concerts in the park, school social potlucks, pool parties, backyard parties… [Read more…]
Um, yeah, so it’s snowing again. It’s late March and it’s snowing. But I can’t stop believing that someday, one day, soon, we will have an actual spring. With picnics, and potlucks, and get togethers. And outside. Playgrounds. Running, jumping outside of my house….that’s not a dream is it? We will be able to leave the house, won’t we? [Read more…]
Let’s all admit it…the best part of meatloaf is the crust. Sweetened by ketchup, the caramelized, crusty outside is reason alone to make meatloaf.
That’s one reason that I made these meatloaves individual-sized–to maximize the crust-factor. The other is that they freeze better and who doesn’t want their very own meatloaf for dinner any night of the week? Plus, the kids love that they get their own meatloaf. Territorial much? [Read more…]
Lazy Sunday doesn’t mean the same thing as it used to. In the old days it meant wake up sometime before noon and relocate to the couch for football or movie watching. In college my roommate and I would sometimes even convert the couch into the pull out bed for maximum lounging comfort. If we were feeling really motivated I’d go out and get something to eat; if not, hello delivery.
Now a lazy Sunday means waking up at (or before) 6am and stealing a couple of hours to myself drinking coffee and writing while the kids blissfully sleep until almost 8. Then taking our time to make a healthy breakfast before playing with puzzles or Legos, staying in our jammies as long as possible.
It’s the pork butt that just won’t quit! In my last installment of how to turn one slow cooked pork shoulder into a plethora of meals: Chili Verde. Green chili is pretty much my favorite thing ever when it comes to stews. I think it just tastes fresh, which is so welcome in the dead of winter!
Basically, you’re essentially making a salsa that you simmer more of your leftover pork in. I had a sweet potato without a plan so I threw that in too as I was worried that it might be a little scimpy by the end of our pork shoulder. I didn’t particularly need it for volume, but I loved the added texture, color and sweet flavor that complimented the tangy salsa.
Me: N, what would you like to help me cook for dinner (expecting an answer of mac & cheese or pizza)
N: Steak. I want to help you cook steak. With vegetables. And a nice salad.
Me completely freaking out because he’s hilarious and awesome. And then trying to figure out how he can help me cook something that you literally just throw on the hottest surface you can find for 5 minutes and then slice with your sharpest cutting implement.
He’s 4. He’s super good with assembling and mixing. Not so good with slicing and searing. That’s ok! Kabobs are all about marinating (essentially mixing) and assembly. I cut everything to size in advance and pre-mixed the spice blend (although older kids could easily do that part too). Then, just before dinner, N and I skewered the kabobs. I grilled them solo of course, but he still got to play a big role in helping mom in the kitchen.
Oh happy day, our friends came to play. Which means something so different than what it meant in pre-kids days. Even with the 4 kids running around underfoot though, we can still manage to have good food, good wine and good conversation:
“How’s your book coming along? Nicholas PUT THAT DOWN.”
“Jo Jo stop moving the furniture. Great, almost done”
“I can’t wait to read–WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH”
Julia Child’s Boeuf Bourguignon and boiled potatoes. A cheap cut of meat simmered in wine and bacon all day. Yeah, it didn’t suck. It could also all be made ahead so I wasn’t spending too much time in the kitchen, unless I was trying to escape the chaos.
I also made breakfast ahead so when the kids woke us up at 5:30am after a big night of visiting, we didn’t need to worry about cooking. Just turn on the oven and pop in the Southern Breakfast Strata. An hour later it’s done.
So, the menu for an effortless weekend of entertaining with 4 kids?
Southern Breakfast Strata