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Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Rut-Busting

I have been in a food-rut. I think we all do it at some point-life gets busy, cooking drops to the bottom of the priority list and we resort to making whatever is fastest and requires the least thought and effort. On days when I stay late at school to tutor it falls to my husband to make dinner. This means we will have one of two selections-Papa John's Pizza or Kentucky Fried Chicken. Those are the two recipes in his cooking repertoire. Uh-huh. Both of which are fine in a pinch but as a staple of our diet, not quite doin' it for me. And, frankly I was getting really bored of eggs and bacon, crock pot roast and jambalaya that can be served in 18-20 minutes.

Here are my cookbooks. I collect them like I collect Halloween scrapbooking supplies. I may never use them but they are fun to look at. 
Which is a shame, on both counts.
It's got to change.
Change starts with me since I am the only one in the house that can read the mysterious language that these books are written in. Words like "saute," "deglaze," (no, honey that is not a fancy word for a plain donut) "simmer" and " boullion" might as well be French as far as my husband is concerned. Actually, boullion may really be French but that is beside the point.
I decided that this week I was going to pick five new recipes to try and I was going to come home every night and make them, come hell or high water. 
This week I selected recipes from a couple of my Pioneer Women cookbooks. Ree has never steered me wrong and I was confident that this would make my week a success thus pushing me to continue this tasty journey.
I did my online grocery shopping-which if you haven't tried you absolutely should- and made sure that I had all the ingredients so there would be no excuses or last minute pizza ordering.
Every night I do a quick check to see what proteins I may need to thaw or if I can chop something in advance.
You know what? I have loved cooking this week! My husband and daughter are excited about dinner. We are sitting at the table and enjoying our food and each other's company. My house smells amazing. Dinner has become a treat and not just a boring nightly routine like doing homework and taking a bath. My husband clears the table and loads the dishes. An added bonus has been that hubby and I both have yummy leftovers for lunch the next day which are so much better tasting than frozen microwave food.
Here's what I have made thus far. They all have been great. The chicken with mustard cream sauce was AMAZING. 
Chicken with Mustard-Cream Sauce



Meatballs with Peppers and Pineapple


Beef Stroganoff


On the menu tomorrow night-PIZZA.
THIS pizza-
Steakhouse Pizza
I hope you will give these recipes a try! I have already found some new favorites. Definitely domestic bliss! :)

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