Day 12(Monday): We still have a decent amount of Thai basil leftover, and I figured it's due time for some stir fry. Plus I don't think it's going to last another day. I'm scrolling through recipes from The Woks of Life and I come across one that looks good. It also looks familiar. I made it last year! So I check my old posts, and it says to double the amount of basil. Well, that's not happening. Doesn't matter. This was still delicious.
We also realize that even though we bought a ridiculous amount of groceries the week before, that we were running out of fruit! So we go back to the grocery store an pick up more stuff. Hey, we lasted one extra day this time!
Day 13 (Tuesday): I have a friend of a friend that apparently works at a local restaurant, and they've got a ton of food (ingredients) that they're telling their employees to take home. So what does that mean for me? I get a surprise box of produce! It's like Misfits Markets again!
I mean, really all I specifically asked for was avocados, but she asked me if I was also willing to take limes, and so I said, I'll take anything! But these avocados are super ripe, so they need to be used today.
And what else can we do with avocado? Put them on some BBQ chicken pizza!
We half the dough recipe this time since we had super thick pizza two days ago. But this turns out super thin. Next time we'll go with 3/4 the amount of dough. And maybe one day I'll actually buy a circular pizza pan so we can have proper circular pizzas.
Day 14 (Wednesday): Yesterday we had chips and guac. Today we decide to have chips and queso!
But what about dinner? We have so much food. Why did we buy so much food? What do we have that looks like it's going bad? The green beans are looking a little sad. Let's make green bean casserole! I have this can of Cream of Chicken that has been sitting in my cabinet for who knows how long. It looks like it expired last year. But it's canned, so I assume it's fine.
In making the pizza and the cheesy bread a few nights ago, my sister learned that I have a large amount of cornmeal just sitting in my pantry, so this inspires her to make some cornbread.
Now all we need is some protein in this meal. I did buy a family pack of chicken breast from the store on Monday. So I look for some chicken breast recipes, and found this super basic one from Budget Bytes. Chicken breast is kind of boring, but as long as we absolutely do not overcook it, it will be delicious. The recipe says to cook for 20 minutes. I think we cooked it for less than 15. Perfectly cooked chicken breast.
I meant to write this blog post over two weeks ago. Then I got really busy, and I went on vacation, and now I don't really remember what I wanted to write about. But I have all these pictures so I should at least show them to you, and maybe looking through them will help jog my memory.
Remember how I subscribed to Misfits Market to get veggies delivered regularly? Well, I canceled it a while ago, but they did send me an email asking me to use their service again AND they gave me a complimentary box. I kind of feel bad because half of this box went to waste. It wasn't my fault though. The produce was sitting in transit for way too long and by the time it was delivered, the ice packs were completely melted, and the spring mix looked really sad. So, yeah, this free box didn't convince me to sign up again.
But, I did get an eggplant that I could use. I really like stir fried eggplant so I made Chinese Eggplant with Garlic Sauce. I know I didn't have any spicy bean paste or ground pork at the time, but it still tasted good without those ingredients.
And to go along with the Asian theme, I made some Sesame Chicken. This is a pretty old Budget Bytes recipe, and it was recently updated to double the sauce. I don't think it needs nearly that much sauce, so I would actually cut it in half now. So easy to make though, and very delicious.
It's really hard to tell from the picture of produce, but I did get some zucchini in a bag (why some things get put in bags, and others don't, I have no idea). Zucchini is not my favorite vegetable, as it reminds me too much of college cafeteria food, but turning it into Zucchini Fritters makes them a little better.
While I'm not a huge fan of zucchini, I really don't like butternut squash. It just tastes like a cross between a sweet potato and a pumpkin, but somehow much worse than either of those. I also don't know what I'm supposed to do with it except roast it or turn it into soup. They also take forever to cut up, which makes them not worth it to cook at all. But hey, this was free and I didn't want to waste it.
I do love salmon, though! This recipe came from a book, so I can't exactly provide a link. I still haven't quite mastered the art of baking salmon. I think I may have put it in the oven at 350 or 400 degrees for 10 minutes, and then broiled it for 5. This was waaay overcooked, but at least the rub was really tasty.
Also mango salsa to go on top of the fish! Because I had mangoes in the box!
For some reason I thought the mango salsa would go with the sesame chicken. I don't think I'd pair the two again.
Oh yeah, I also made collard greens (because it was in the box!), but I neglected to take a picture of the collard greens by itself.
Not box related at all, but I also cooked Shrimp Scampi Florentine, with some pasta added. This dish is always delicious.
I had a dinner with friends where we all made pizza. Anytime I get to choose my own pizza toppings, I will always choose BBQ chicken. For some reason every time my family orders pizza, they ask me what pizza topping I want, I tell them barbecue chicken, and they give me a look and proceed to not get any barbecue chicken. It's okay. I can just make my own.
And finally, here's one last picture of that chicken rice skillet. Because I must have had leftovers from the week before and this picture looks nice.
And that concludes this long, not-very-cohesive post. Honestly, it'll probably be a while until my next post because my schedule is crazy and I'm not going to have too much time to cook. Maybe once the summer is over!
Somehow in all our cooking, I feel like we have too much food and not enough food at the same time. We're just always running out of vegetables! I am very adamant about having vegetables in every meal I cook. I can leave out meat, or I can leave out a starchy element, but I need vegetables. And I found myself going to the grocery store almost every day just because I needed more veggies.
So I decided to subscribe to a service that delivers produce on a regular basis. I kept seeing ads for Misfits Market on Facebook, and I wanted to give it a try. My first box contained the above produce and at full price, it's $23.50. This is what their site says:
We ship fresh, imperfect produce for up to 50% less than what you pay in stores.
I'll say this. The produce is probably better looking than what I get at Aldi, but definitely not cheaper. But then again, the Misfits Market produce is organic, and I never look at the organic section in Aldi.
But, on to the meal I cooked!
Since I had an eggplant, I needed an eggplant recipe. The first idea that came to my mind was to stir fry it, so I checked The Woks of Life and I saw Stir-fried Eggplant, Potatoes, and Peppers. I had some potatoes in my box of produce and some bell peppers in the fridge so that was perfect.
I always think of stir fry as a really easy method of cooking, but this was kind of complicated, with the putting things in the wok and taking them out, and putting them back in later.
And just because it is nice to have meat in my meals, I also made Thai Peanut Chicken from Budget Bytes. Chicken drumsticks are still on sale at Aldi! We added more fish sauce to the marinade and also upped the amount of soy sauce.
It was a lot more effort than I wanted to put in for a weeknight meal, but it was delicious.