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Salmon Salad with Honey Mustard Vinaigrette

Honey mustard salmon salad

Date: April 9th 2014

Recipe: http://www.annies-eats.com/2014/03/24/salmon-salad-with-honey-mustard-vinaigrette/

Time to table: 1 hour (give or take – it’s mostly just chopping and assembling but the eggs have to be made, and salmon cooked)

Servings: We just did 2 salads

Modifications: We broiled the salmon but then it started on fire :) So probably should have just done as we were told as usual. Didn’t have red onions so didn’t add them.

Ben: Love

Erin: Love

Notes: This was a date night meal in the sunroom after the kids went to bed. Salmon is too expensive for them ;) SUCH a good salad! I love warm salmon on a cold salad. We will definitely be having this again. I had another salad without the salmon today and it was still quite filling.

Honey mustard salmon salad
Before salmon

Honey mustard salmon salad

Honey mustard salmon salad

Tuna Noodle Casserole

Tuna Noodle Casserole

Date: April 8th 2014

Recipe: http://www.browneyedbaker.com/2014/04/01/tuna-noodle-casserole-recipe/

Time to table: 1 hour

Servings: A full 13×9 pan, so we’ll have plenty for lunches/leftovers, which is nice.

Modifications: Didn’t use mushrooms (don’t like them) or the potato chips (didn’t want to buy a whole bag just for this).

Ben: Love

Erin: Love

Annie: Like

Luke: Like

Notes: The instructions are written very sequentially so the dish takes awhile to assemble. If you cook the pasta while using the food processor you can save some time, this made for a later weeknight meal that we usually have.

Tuna Noodle Casserole

Turkey Cheeseburger Helper

Cheeseburger Mac

Date: March 31 2014

Recipe: http://iowagirleats.com/2012/01/26/bachelor-food-redo/

Modifications: We used ground turkey thigh instead of beef.

Ben: Love

Erin: Like

Annie: Like

Luke: Like

Notes: Randomly the kids ate their salads better than the pasta tonight, whatever. This was a really easy dish  that gave a couple lunches, great for a weeknight.

Kids dinners

Baked Chicken and One-Pot Pasta

One Pot Pasta

Date: March 18th

Recipe:

Pasta: http://www.apronstringsblog.com/one-pot-wonder-tomato-basil-pasta-recipe/

Chicken: I can’t find the recipe anymore, but I coated it in melted butter, and then put in a mixture of panko and parmesan and baked until done. Pretty easy!

Modifications: None really, but I did break up the spaghetti so it was all pretty much submerged in the liquid.

Time to table: 45 minutes

Servings: A TON of the pasta! We could have easily had it for 2 meals.

Ben: Like

Erin: Like

Annie: Loved the chicken (as usual) and tolerated the pasta

Luke: Loved the chicken and broccoli, had to be forced to try the pasta

Notes: I really enjoyed the one pot pasta! I didn’t think it would really be filling enough so we had chicken with it (plus I KNEW the kids would not eat it, despite it being basically PLAIN NOODLES). They love noodles but definitely want sauce on it. Both the chicken and pasta turned out great and I’d definitely make it again!

One Pot Pasta

Crispy Baked Chicken

One Pot Pasta

One Pot Pasta

Tortellini chili

Tortellini Chili

Date: 3/12/2014

Recipe: http://www.closetcooking.com/2014/03/tortellini-chili.html

Modifications: I used crushed tomatoes instead of diced and only used ~ 2 cups of broth because I like thicker chilis.

Time to table: 30 minutes

Servings: Dinner and a couple lunches

Ben: Like

Erin: Like

Annie: Like

Luke: Like

Notes: This was a good weeknight meal – make the chili in the crock pot during the day and then cook and add the frozen tortellini when you get home. Very easy and you’ve got leftovers for lunches.

Tortellini Chili

Tortellini Chili

cabernet braised short ribs with chard and shells

Pasta with cabernet braised shortribs

Date: 1/25/2014

Recipe: http://www.annies-eats.com/2013/11/13/cabernet-braised-short-ribs-with-chard-and-orecchiette/

Modifications: None.

Time to table: 60 minutes, with a couple hours for the meat to braise

Servings: 6 adults

Ben: Love

Erin: Love

Notes: We decided to have this after the kids went to bed on Saturday night, after giving them leftovers. Really great decision cause this was damn good and now we get the leftovers to ourselves! This wasn’t difficult to make at all, just a lot of pans and timing everything right.

Pasta with cabernet braised shortribs

Pasta with cabernet braised shortribs

Squash, Sage and Hazelnut Risotto

Pork and squash risotto

Date: 1/18/2014

Recipe: http://www.williams-sonoma.com/recipe/butternut-squash-sage-and-hazelnut-risotto.html

Modifications: I followed the recipe pretty exactly this time.

Time to table: 60 minutes (with all the chopping)

Servings: 6 adults

Ben: Like

Erin: Like

Annie: Dislike (but had a few bites)

Luke: Dislike

Notes: I’ve made this a few times before, the first time was before kids. It was definitely a mistake to attempt this on a weeknight! I got it done, but it took FOREVER. There are a ton of steps in this recipe, not the least of which is “peeled and toasted hazelnuts” which SOUNDS like no big deal, but it is not easy to peel hazelnuts. I used this method. This is a really delicious recipe, and I previously would say I loved it, but my love was tempered with trying to rush through it. Only attempt on a night when you want to enjoy the process of cooking, not when you just need to get a meal on the table! The kids did not HATE this, but they certainly didn’t like it either, we basically had to bribe them to have a few bites and that was it. Definitely better for a meal after they go to bed, but halve the recipe because it makes a ton! We’ve always served this with some kind of pork, and the pairing works well.

Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli-Rice Casserole

Broccoli Chicken Brown Rice Casserole

Date: December 30th, 2013 (last meal cooked in 2013!)

Recipe: http://iowagirleats.com/2013/10/02/skinny-cheesy-chicken-and-broccoli-rice-casserole/

Modifications:  I didn’t modify TOO much, but used regular sour cream and 2% milk, thus negating the “skinny” in the original recipe title. I also made it way earlier in the day so instead of just a quick broil, we baked it for about 30 minutes.

Time to table: 60 minutes prep (but some of that time was just the wild rice being made), 30 minutes baking

Servings: 13×9 pan, so quite a bit

Erin: Like

Ben: Like

Annie: Like+

Luke: Like+

Notes: Next time I’ll definitely steam the broccoli separately, steaming it in with the rice definitely didn’t get done, so then I added more water and then the rice got slightly overdone. I’d also chop the broccoli up a lot more, which is just a personal preference. That would be the only thing I’d do differently – this was a great comfort food meal, the kids ate it really well. It wasn’t something they devoured or asked for seconds of, but it was a solid family meal. (Also, can you tell we found a new favorite food blog?? Good to have some more variety!!)

faces at dinner

faces at dinner

Broccoli Chicken Brown Rice Casserole

Beef Stew

Beef Stew

Date: December 21st, 2013

Recipe: http://iowagirleats.com/2013/12/16/beef-stew/

Modifications:  I used a few more vegetables and a little less salt than the original recipe called for. Also left out the mushrooms, cause yeah.

Time to table: 30 minutes prep, 2 hours simmer time

Servings: Two family dinners

Erin: Love

Ben: Love

Annie: Like

Luke: Dislike

Notes: This was delicious with mashed potatoes, for some reason Luke didn’t like it either night we had it. Too bad for him, cause Mom and Dad liked it, so we’re definitely having it again!

Beef Stew

Beef Stew

Crockpot Italian Beef Sandwiches

Crockpot Italian Beef Sandwiches

Date: November 12th, 2013

Recipe: http://iowagirleats.com/2013/10/23/crock-pot-italian-beef-sandwiches/

Modifications:  No changes

Time to table: 15 minutes prep time, 8 hours cook time

Servings: Probably enough for 6-8 sandwiches

Erin: Love

Ben: Love

Annie: Like

Luke: Like

Notes: This was incredibly easy to make and great for a weeknight meal. We probably should have planned a vegetable to go with it, that’ll have to wait until next time. Luke enjoys stuffing his face with a fistful of meat.

Crockpot Italian Beef Sandwiches

Crockpot Italian Beef Sandwiches

Crockpot Italian Beef Sandwiches