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Greens Pasta

Great Greens Pasta

Date: August 11th, 2014

Recipe: http://www.annies-eats.com/2013/06/04/great-greens-pasta/

Time to table: 45 minutes

Servings: We’ll get one dinner and 4 individual lunches out of this

Modifications: Stuck to the recipe pretty closely, did not use whole wheat pasta because try as I might, it still doesn’t taste good to me at all.

Ben: Like

Erin: Love

Annie: Like (I think if the tomatoes had been removed, she’d be a love too)

Luke: Love

Notes: We are gluttons for punishment sometimes (aka extremely stubborn) – after the debacle with the last meal, I was determined to try another version of green pasta that I felt would go over a bit better and get the kids used to the idea that green sauce on pasta IS good! (or remind them, rather, since they have had pesto on pasta many times) It seemed to work! I also gave them comically small portions so they really wouldn’t have to eat that much for it to be a smashing success. Luke did have another helping, and both kids ate this really well and said they liked it! I was surprised at how easy it was – the longest step was chopping the tomatoes and roasting them. I did not really read the recipe that closely and was somewhat shocked to see that it called for A POUND of spinach, not sure I used quite that much because I wanted to save some for smoothies tomorrow. This is packed with great stuff and the avocado and yogurt give the sauce a really smooth flavor!

Lots of spinach

 

 

Pretty tomatoes

 

Great Greens Pasta

Luke happy about his sucker

Tortellini with kale pesto and peas

Kale Pesto Tortellini

Date: August 6th, 2014

Recipe: http://www.annies-eats.com/2014/06/09/tortellini-with-kale-pesto-and-peas/

Time to table: 45 minutes

Servings: Two dinners worth

Modifications: I used more kale and more peas than it called for, I just used an entire bunch of kale because I didn’t want any leftover.

Ben: Like

Erin: Like

Annie: Dislike

Luke: Dislike

Notes: Both kids were horrified at green pasta. They complained and stalled worse than normal. They eventually both ate some, not without a LOT of coaxing. When I busted this out for dinner the next night, they were really pleased to see it again. Erin and I like this a lot though, it was great, and I’ll make it again, dammit.

SERIOUSLY offended by the sight of dinner

jalapeño cheddar chicken burgers with guacamole

Chicken burgers

Date: August 5th, 2014

Recipe: http://www.annies-eats.com/2013/07/10/jalapeno-cheddar-chicken-burgers-with-guacamole/

Time to table: 60 minutes

Servings: Four burgers

Modifications: Nothing, actually, I followed the recipe rather closely for once.

Ben: Like

Erin: Like

Annie: Like, eventually

Luke: Dislike

Notes: Once Annie actually tried these, she liked them, but both kids were turned off by the fact that they didn’t look like beef burgers. My attempt at tricking Luke by saying the refried beans were chocolate yogurt failed.

Chicken burgers

Corn Chowder

Corn Chowder

Date: July 14th, 2014

Recipe: http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/corn_chowder/

Time to table: 60 minutes

Servings: Dinner for four, with some lunch leftovers

Modifications: I used more bacon and I didn’t take it out as the recipe indicates. I cooked the bacon first, and then used the bacon grease to cook the vegetables. I also used a lot more veggies (1 whole onion, several carrots, several celery stalks) because we like thicker soups around here. I lightly pureed the soup with the immersion blender on its lowest setting.

Ben: Love

Erin: Love

Annie: Love

Luke: Love

Notes: Big time winner here. It was cool the day we made this and it was perfect for the weather and the kids devoured it, which is always satisfying.

Pork Stuffed Poblano Peppers

Pulled pork stuffed peppers

Date: June 19th, 2014

Recipe: http://addapinch.com/cooking/2013/08/20/pulled-pork-stuffed-poblano-peppers-recipe/

Time to table: 45 minutes

Servings: three stuffed poblano peppers, halved

Modifications: I wanted the stuffing to be a little creamier, so I mashed up a can of cannellini beans and then added the remaining ingredients. After mixing everything, I sautéed the whole mixture a bit to heat it up. Then I stuffed the peppers and cooked them on the grill.

Ben: Like

Erin: Like

Annie: Like

Luke: Dislike

Notes: Another recipe to use up some pork from last weekend (I froze the remaining pork, which amounted to 10 cups of pork). These were pretty good and I’d make them again if I was looking to get rid of some pork, but they were nothing special.

Pulled Pork Egg Muffins

Pulled pork egg muffins

Date: June 18th, 2014

Recipe: http://adventurepaleo.blogspot.com/2013/08/whole-30-day-2.html

Time to table: 30 minutes

Servings: 7 muffins

Modifications: I only used one bell pepper, and added onions, spinach, and cheese to ours.

Ben: Love

Erin: Love

Annie: Like

Luke: Like

Notes: I smoked two pork shoulders when my family came over for Father’s Day and so we had a TON of leftover pulled pork, so I was looking for creative recipes to use it up. This recipe is effectively mini frittatas, but I tricked my children by calling them “pork cupcakes”. Neither of them has eaten that many eggs in years, so I felt rather smug. I’ll tell them the truth later on.

Erin and I both thought they were excellent, and they reheated well as Erin took them for lunch the next day.

Pulled pork egg muffins

Barbecued Chicken

Barbequed chicken

Date: June 8th, 2014

Recipe: http://www.annies-eats.com/2013/08/07/barbecued-chicken/

Time to table: 90 minutes

Servings: two adults, two toddlers + left over chicken

Modifications: I used a package of thighs and a package of  drum sticks, since they didn’t have a whole cut up chicken. Both skin-on and with bones. I didn’t use the water in the grill, cause that seemed unnecessary to me and the chicken cooked faster than the recipe indicated, but I might have had a hotter grill.

Ben: Love

Erin: Love

Annie: Love

Luke: Love

Notes: Both kids crushed the chicken, which is always satisfying to see. They must have been hungry because the got after the green beans and potatoes too. The chicken was really, really, good. We usually either roast a whole chicken, or I cook chicken wings, we don’t usually grill thighs and drum sticks, but these have made me a convert.

Barbequed Chicken

Barbequed Chicken

Barbequed Chicken

Beef Stir Fry with Snow Peas

Beef stir fry

Date: June 2nd, 2014

Recipe: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2010/10/beef-with-snow-peas/

Time to table: 45 minutes

Servings: two adults, two toddlers + 1 lunch

Modifications: Left out the red pepper, cause yeah. I had a large enough skillet and we cut the recipe back a bit, so I cooked the meat all at the same time. Instead of rice we made cauliflower rice, which Erin and I both liked a lot, and the kids didn’t seem to notice. The cauliflower rice is definitely more work and more expensive.

Ben: Love

Erin: Like+

Annie: Like

Luke: Like

Notes: This was excellent and we’re not even a big stir-fry family. I think we’ll do stir fry more often, especially in the summer. The sauce for this was particularly good.

 

Beef stir fry

Key West Grilled Chicken with Cilantro-Lime Cauliflower Rice

Key West Grilled Chicken with Cilantro-Lime Cauliflower Rice

Date: May 27th, 2014

Recipe: http://iowagirleats.com/2012/06/25/key-west-grilled-chicken-with-cilantro-lime-cauliflower-rice/

Time to table: 60 minutes

Servings: two adults, two toddlers

Modifications: None, actually

Ben: Love

Erin: Like

Annie: Like

Luke: Like

Notes: A little time consuming for a weeknight meal, but I made the mango salsa a little earlier, so that saved some time. Would definitely make it again as it ended up being a rather healthy meal and the kids liked it.

Luke at dinner

Chicken Taco Salad

Chicken Salad

Date: May 5th, 2014

Recipe: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2013/07/chicken-taco-salad/

Time to table: 30 minutes

Servings: 4 salads

Modifications: Lots – I knew the kids wouldn’t eat plain avocado and tomatoes, so I made guacamole instead (just avocado, red onion, tomatoes, cilantro). We used chicken thighs. Just sauteed some frozen corn instead of ears. Didn’t use cheese (very odd for us!). Kids salads were very deconstructed.

Ben: Love

Erin: Love

Annie: Love

Luke: Love (kept asking for MORE CHIPS though, obviously)

Notes: Oh hey! The elusive QUADRUPLE LOVE!! That really will happen anytime guacamole is involved, especially with Luke. He did really eat most everything else though, except that pesky corn. Even the lettuce though. Annie cleaned her plate! First family meal on the deck, a beautiful spring night!

Chicken Salad

Chicken Salad

Dinner on the deck