Tuesday, December 27

Dinners in Pictures

So I left off on Monday with the Butternut Squash and Tomato Soup.

Tuesday's menu was Penne Pasta and Kale. --I've never done anything with kale before, so I used a recipe for Basic Sauteed Kale that I found in the magazine Recipe.com.

Tuesday was also Kyleigh's last day of school before her Christmas break and we had decided to take the girls to a Christmas lights park nearby. I was under a little time crunch that evening, so it was a good thing that dinner was a quick one.

First up was washing and tearing the kale.

See that mysterious flying piece of kale? That would be a curious Abby wanting to take a taste and using my momentary distraction as an opportunity. :)

I washed and tore 2 bunches of organic kale that I bought from the grocery store across the street.

Recipe in hand, a huge mixing bowl full of kale, and we are ready to go!

First thing was to heat up a bit of olive oil in the bottom of a large pot. Then I added in the full amount of kale.

 I tossed that for a few minutes until the leaves were bright green. Then the recipe said to cover and let it go for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Next was to push the kale aside and add a bit more olive oil and minced garlic and crushed red pepper.

I didn't have a chance to mince some cloves of garlic and I don't have crushed red pepper on hand. So I used garlic powder and a bit of ancho chile powder.

I stirred all that together and let it cook for another 30 seconds.

The instructions said to then remove from heat and stir in sherry vinegar (or red-wine vinegar) and salt.

And now it is ready to go alongside the penne pasta with red sauce that has been cooking while the kale was cooking.
The red sauce had a can of tomato sauce, leftover spaghetti sauce, and the remaining mashed butternut squash.

The kale wasn't really enjoyed by anyone, myself included, but it wasn't horrible. I'll be trying this again only with the listed ingredients. :)

Wednesday--Banana Muffins

Thursday-- Baked Macaroni & Cheese This is also a recipe I found in the Recipe.com magazine.

2 cups dried elbow macaroni (8 oz)
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream
2 cups fat-free milk
2 Tbsp finely chopped onion or
    2 tsp dried minced onion (I had neither so I went with 2 tsp onion powder)
3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1 tsp yellow mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
2 Tbsp plain bread crumbs
2 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
2 tsp olive oil

    Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 2-quart ceramic baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

    In a large pot, cook macaroni according to package directions; drain. Return to pot; stir in sour cream. Cover; keep warm.

    Meanwhile, for sauce, in a large saucepan, whisk milk, onion, flour, mustard, salt, cayenne pepper and black pepper until smooth. Bring to boiling over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens. Remove from heat; stir in cheddar cheese until melted.

    Add cheese sauce to cooked macaroni; mix well. Spoon into baking dish.

    In a small bowl, combine bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese and olive oil. Sprinkle evenly over casserole.

    Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 to 25 minutes, or until edges are bubbly.

Friday-- It was supposed to be Pizza and a Movie Night but we took the girls to see The Nutcracker ballet. :) They enjoyed it.

Saturday-- On the menu was Quiche, but my dad and sister stopped by and for our Christmas and dinner was switched out with Domino's pizza. Totally not complaining though. :)

Stay tuned for next week!


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