Weekend Meal Planning | Food I Put in My Mouth

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I know you were curious what I would eat this weekend, especially after my last post about a bachelor’s pantry. After three months at House of Carbs, I finally remembered to thaw meat to cook for dinner.

Here’s the first creation: stir-fry chicken with fresh veggies and brown rice. During a trip to the Asian supermarket I grabbed Chinese five spice. As the name implies, this spice blend saves you the hassle of buying five herbs when you really want their combined flavor. I attempted to flour the chicken and fry it off to make something similar to sweet and sour chicken, but I used the wrong pan to fry the chicken and the majority of the breading came off. Mistakes happen and the dish turned out just fine without the breading.

The next two were consumed during Northwestern’s victory over the Nittany Lions. Early kick offs don’t allow a lot of time to eat. Leann made these French chocolate dragon eggs to fit the Game of Thrones tailgate theme. Author and NU alumnus George R.R. Martin was honored with Medill’s Hall of Achievement Award. We chowed down on a slice of Connies to get us through the remainder of the cat fight.

The exhilaration of the last-minute victory provided the energy to get home to make these Mexican pizza homages. Toast up a tortilla, then add refried beans, cheese, salsa and your favorite toppings for a quick dinner.
Sunday has become the day I grocery shop and cook the most. Coincidence?  Continue reading Weekend Meal Planning | Food I Put in My Mouth

Pizza for the Procrastinator | Recipe & Story

world cup, fifa, lunch, salad, wrap, pizza

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I like to believe that I’m unique, but there’s one thing I trust I share with most people: I procrastinate when it comes to food.

Most of my free time is spent watching cooking shows, reading recipes and cooking. I also nap more than a newborn. Planning meals is not listed in that rundown. I improvise in the kitchen and oftentimes it works out well. But certain food needs advanced thought, especially anything involving a dough.

If you stalk me or are just vigilant about reading my semi-occasional posts (I appreciate all my readers), you may recall that time I tried making pizza a few weeks ago. The toppings were a bit off and the pre-made dough needed salt. While sitting on the couch watching the World Cup, I found a blog post for tw0-ingredient pizza dough that didn’t require yeast or time to rest/rise/rest.

For the dough: 1 cup Greek yogurt and 1 – 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour.

I didn’t have self-rising flour, so you can add 1 teaspoon of baking powder.

BOOM! You are now one step closer to your own show on the DIY Network.

The story before the pizza:

My lady friend and I attended the Summer Lovin’ fundraiser for Northwestern Memorial Hospital. I had gone a few times in the past to sample the finest food the Windy City has to offer and the finest singles Chicago Magazine selects. I’m still waiting for the email or phone call, editors of Chicago Mag. This year was the first I went where I wasn’t single.

Singles events are like the World Cup. Take the corner kick. Everyone crowds the net waiting for the perfect opportunity to head the ball into the net. Every time someone passes by, you hope they stop or that you can engage them in some repartee. Or maybe you run around looking for the right opportunity.

But here’s my pearl of wisdom from dating the majority of women in the metropolitan area: free kicks are rare. You have to make your own opportunities, and I’ve found they don’t happen at singles events.

No one wants to go to a singles event solo. So they rally the army for a night out. Instead of having one-on-one interactions, you have the choice of 1-on-5, or, if you have some confident friends, 2-on-5. Oftentimes when you look around you’ll see one guy talking to two or three women. That takes confidence. Or drunkenness. Either way, you have to make the move and find a group that doesn’t look like they are discussing how to cure cancer.

The night and scotch reminded me of all the time and events I went to trying to meet an adventurous gal. As soon as the security guards started ushering the pretty people toward the exit, everyone suddenly was in a meaningful conversation. It’s like the referees had just added bonus time to the match.

After briefly checking out the after party and a short stroll around downtown, we headed back toward the ‘burbs.

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Saturday (aka PIZZA DAY)

The sun was out and all was right with the world. My lady friend and I went for a walk in a forest preserve. She didn’t kill me and leave me for dead. So there’s that.

After wandering around and not seeing the pretty parts of the trail, we eventually migrated to another walking path. This time by a river. We spotted four couples taking wedding photos. Apparently everyone wants to get married on the longest day of the year.

Ominous clouds crept in and we made it back to the car just before the downpour. We loaded up on extra foodstuffs at Trader Joe’s for the pizza and detoured around closed streets before firing up the oven for Pizza Night: Round 2.

Toppings:

  • Sauteed red onion and mushrooms
  • Kalamata olives
  • Salami
  • Shredded cheddar

Notes: The dough is incredibly sticky. The flavor is decent, it needs a teaspoon of salt. Next time we will try 1:1.5 cups ratio. The dough may not have been fully cooked in the center, so make sure you roll it out to an even, thin layer. But we nailed the toppings.

You know what they say about the third time? Stay tuned for Pizza Night: Round 3.

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