Make This Now

So much of life is a Catch -22.  I like planning ahead, but I like to match things to my mood and you can’t plan your mood ahead of time, can you?  That would be nice though!  Good moods every Friday please!  Anyway, this is all to say spring is so up and down and I find it hard to match pre-planned meals to ever-changing weather.  I feel like grilling a burger when it’s 80° and sunny and curry when it’s rainy and gray, but those things can happen in the same day!

I guess this list is comprised of meals that managed to match my mood and the weather.  Those make me extra happy and are the reason I continue to chase that feeling.

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One-Skillet Lemon Pepper Shrimp and Orzo

Do you every just HARD-sear some zucchini coins and then realize they look bad in pictures?  Me neither…  Anyway, we made this skillet dinner a few weeks back and were delighted when the orzo cooked perfectly and tasted wonderfully decadent but still light and citrusy.  Also, we bought a bag of Meyer lemons to make this and I legitimately full on ate the other six?  Joey thought I was insane, but they tasted like candy to me!

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Banh Mi Burgers

Okay, I maybe said “next time I make these, I’m definitely adding more salt to the beef” something like 10 times the night we made these, but they were still REALLY GOOD.  Then again, I’m a sucker for banh mi anything.  Joey asked me “what makes these banh mi burgers??” and I was so confused, because… everything?  Those quick-pickled veggies, that fiery sriracha mayo, all that cilantro!  I loved them.  Also, I’ve tried SO MANY sweet potato fry methods and then I just tossed these in olive oil, salt and pepper and roasted them for 30 minutes and I think they were the best ones I’ve ever made, ha!

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Tomato-Ricotta Pizza

Per my Dinner Diary (yeah, I still keep that!), I made this pizza two years ago and not since.  Which is a shame, because it is delicious!  It has a pesto-ricotta and roasted cherry tomatoes and a sprinkling of feta and basil.  So many flavor bombs that just really sing together.  Plus I ate a cherry tomato while prepping this pizza and it had NO RIGHT to taste as good as it did this early in the season.  Not mad about the leftover ricotta I have in the fridge either because it means ricotta pancakes are in my very near future!

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Black Bean and Tempeh Tacos with Cashew Cheese Sauce

These tacos were a breeze because I had leftover cheese sauce from burrito bowls the week before and black beans I’d already cooked from scratch in the freezer.  Look, I’m not really one to enjoy a veggie taco because you know what’s good?  Steak, chicken, shrimp, carnitas!  But these were honestly so good and satisfying.  Also, how good are those corn-wheat blend tortillas?  Thank you, La Tortilla Factory, for this little gift.

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Skillet Poblano and Pumpkin Enchiladas

Two skillet recipes in one post?  You know it!  And let me tell you, skillet enchiladas are way way way easier than real enchiladas.  Joey and I are still traumatized by the time we made enchiladas from scratch (cooked the meat, made the sauce, individually fried the tortillas, milked a cow and made cheese… okay, maybe not that last one) and it took HOURS, but this recipe basically just requires you to stir some tortillas strips into a skillet and that I can do!  Plus all the garnishes just make this meal feel extra special.  There’s a lime yogurt sauce, a sprinkle of salty Cotija and those spiced pepitas.  We loved it!

I hope that you’ll find some inspiration here and that you have a wonderful weekend!

Weekend Things

Wow, these May weekends have been so good to us so far!  This one was maybe extra good because it included warm weather and after Thursday’s snow (HOW??), it felt positively thrilling to be out and about in short sleeves.  We even ate dinner outside last night!!!  Plus I got to soak up lots of mom time and honestly, moms are just the best ♥

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We might be back in our Friday night Rockies game groove finally!  We ate dinner at home beforehand and this little pup MUST be ours because he loves pizza too.  He stared at me longingly the entire time I ate and then I maybe gave him a teensy bite.  He gave me a teensy bite later, but not of pizza…  ANYWAY, the game was basically a blowout and we left mega-early after Joey ate Dippin’ Dots and decided he was both cold and confident the Rox would win.

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Saturday started with the Cystic Fibrosis Walk and wow, this was easily the best weather we’ve ever had for it!  Joey even got a nice sunburn.  We went to Katie and Andrew’s for a BBQ afterward and I maybe ate a dip with Fritos mixed in.  Who am I? 😛  We were back home by 2ish and I ran to the grocery while Joey rested from his 10 mile run that morning!  We briefly considered putting those groceries to use, but going out sounded way more fun, so off to the brand newly-opened Pistol Whip we went.  The good news is, the restaurant is beautiful, the menu has lots to offer and the staff is friendly.  The bad news is all the food fell flat for us.  Nothing was properly seasoned, cocktails tasted watered down and the burger was overcooked.  Might be worth trying again, but we’ll see.  We started Burning when we got home and only made it halfway — it’s BEAUTIFUL but slow so far.

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Mother’s Day!  I thought I had it all under control because I made a brunch reservation weeks ago and then two days before, I found out it was actually a brunch BUFFET for $58/person.  So we re-worked out plan and went to Great Scott’s instead and you know what?  It all worked out!  All of us (less Wayne and Adam) went putt-putting after and even though no one took Joey down — he always wins and is truly insufferable when he does — it was still the most fun!  I came in second, so I feel pretty good about it all.

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Back at home, we made salads for the week — LOVE a Cobb — and Joey did some work in our garage while I “read,” and by that I mean I did my nails with my Kindle next to me but turned off 😛  We made what’s becoming one of our favorite meals — one-pan baked salmon with green beans and smashed potatoes — for dinner and, like I said, ate it outside.  Joey had this little GOT set up going and it was my FAVORITE!!!

IF YOU HAVEN’T WATCHED GOT, STOP READING NOW.

As for that episode… THANK YOU FOR A DAYTIME BATTLE!!!  I thought it looked incredible and I actually loved much of it — the Varys scene, the Hound/Arya scene, Cleganebowl, even the Jamie/Cersai stuff — but that Dany stuff made NO SENSE.  Yes, the show has hinted at a “Mad Queen” turn for the entire series, but her ruthlessness and intensity has always been balanced out (if not fully canceled out) by her genuine empathy and kindness.  I’m NOT about this.  Still managed to highly enjoy myself during this episode, though maybe not quite as much as Joey, who laughed SO HARD over that Qyburn scene.  What did everyone else think??