I have had the best weekend! How ’bout you???
After being on the road for a week, then finishing out last week with a jam-packed schedule, it was awesome to spend some time with my family and just veg out a little this weekend.
Friday night, my sister and I had a girls’ night complete with Domino’s new artisan pizza and a chick flick.
Last weekend, my sister had to have emergency surgery to remove a ruptured appendix. Except her appendix was fine and it was an ovarian cyst that had ruptured. Way to noodle that one out, medical professionals! Anyway, I hadn’t seen her since the surgery, so I needed to lay eyes on her to be sure she was ok. I can personally attest to the fact that she is! I feel much better now. 🙂
Very cute. I heart Ginnifer Goodwin. And I dis-heart Kate Hudson. I used to think it was just the characters she played, but I’m starting to think that she’s actually playing herself in most movies. And I’m not a fan. But whatever. Still a super cute movie.
We did the Tuscan Salami and Roasted Vegetable Artisan Pizza for dinner. It was pretty tasty, but as we were eating it, my sister pointed out that it didn’t have any cheese. Indeed. A little strange, but still good. We ended up sprinkling some parm on top and that took it from good to delicious. Cheese=love.
Saturday night, we had more family time! Woot!
A couple of weeks ago, it was my parents’ 25th wedding anniversary so my brother, sister, and I made dinner for them to celebrate.
When my parents first got married, I was 6 and my brother was 3. My (step)dad always raised us like his own from the get go. We didn’t have a lot, but we always had enough. In those early days, we ate a lot of hamburger helper and mac and cheese. Later, we graduated on to chicken on a pretty regular basis–as in, 3-4 nights a week, we were eating chicken. I’m pretty sure this is fairly standard for most busy families.
One night, my brother asked what was for dinner. When my mom replied that we would be having chicken, he had a quintessential adolescent reaction and wailed, “I’m tired of the same old crap all the time!” While my mom wasn’t all that amused at the time, it became a family joke. From then on, we’ve always called chicken, “the same old crap,” and we still eat it from time to time prepared exactly the same way–baked in the oven with some grated parmesan cheese on top. Simple and delicious.
With that in mind, we decided to do a grown up version of the same old crap for dinner, along with a few other throwback dishes.
My brother took the helm, turning the same old crap into a fancy gourmet feast with pan-fried Asiago Chicken. He coated it in a mixture of panko breadcrumbs, asiago, oregano, and fresh parsley, then pan-fried the chicken and finished it in the oven.
Meanwhile, I got to work on a couple other “fancy” versions of family staples: Spinach Souffle and Rice Pilaf.
Stouffer’s Spinach Souffle was always a regular side dish growing up. If you’ve never had it, it is seriously delicious and you should run right out and get some right away. It’s not exactly dietricious, though, so I found a recipe from EatingWell.com that gave us a healthier version. I made it in one dish instead of individual cups like the recipe called for and used 1/2 tsp. of salt It came out really well!
My rice, on the other hand, wasn’t such a triumph. Rice a Roni’s rice pilaf has been a staple on our table for years, but I tried to get fancy with a wild rice mix and veggies. I am notoriously terrible at cooking rice, so I’m not sure why I thought this was such a great idea, but I attempted it anyway. After about an hour and 20 minutes and my brother rescuing it with some wine, we had edible rice.
This definitely would not have turned out had it not been for Noah’s intervention. Note to self: do not cook rice. Ever.
And then–grown up ice cream sandwiches for dessert! I just used my standard chocolate chip cookie recipe to make the cookie parts, then topped one side with bananas and nutella, scooped some vanilla ice cream onto the other side, and carefully smooshed them together to make the sandwiches. After several hours in the freezer to set up, we were golden!
It was really nice to have just the 5 of us together to celebrate my parents’ anniversary. Even though I love my siblings’ SO’s, just being with our family sometimes is really special. We reminisced about all of the great times we had growing up. I’ve got to say, I’m really grateful for my family. I don’t think everyone is as lucky. The fact that we’re close and we all actually like each other is pretty cool! Thanks, Mom and Dad, for giving us such a great family!!!
What did you eat for dinner growing up?
In addition to chicken, we also had our fair share of cube steak, tuna casserole, and spaghetti. 🙂