Steak & Goat Cheese Quesadillas with Tomatoes and Corn (from The Picky Palate)


I like to eat quesadillas, but I do not like to make them. Well, I like to make them for lunch or whenever I might be eating on my own. I don’t like making them for more than person, because they take time to make. If I make Geordie’s first, then he’s usually done by the time I’m finished making mine. And if he waits for me, his quesadilla is cold. I’m a little preoccupied with timing sometimes. We both really enjoyed these quesadillas, but we weren’t able to enjoy them together at the dining room table. Steak and goat cheese make an excellent combination here, and the tomato-corn relish is a very fine accompaniment, though I did make some changes. Instead of warming it all up in a skillet, I combined chopped grape tomatoes, cooked frozen corn, and some lime-flavored olive oil in a bowl and then popped it in the microwave for a bit. Simple and effective. Would have also been good with some avocado thrown in. A very nice dinner, as far as flavor goes.


Carrot Soup with Miso & Sesame (from Smitten Kitchen)


Every once in a while, I get a craving for miso, and this soup seemed like it would fulfill that craving nicely. Unfortunately, when I went to make it, I discovered that I didn’t have enough carrots. So I supplemented with apples. It ended up being a pound and a quarter of carrots and three-quarters pound of apple. I was a little worried about how that would affect the soup, but it came out marvelously. I can’t imagine this soup without the apples; they added a nice depth to what I imagine would be an otherwise one-note base. Nor did they make the soup too sweet. The swirl of sesame oil and the few drops of rayu finished the soup off nicely. Some texture would have been good, maybe in the form of some nice, crunchy croutons, but even without that, it was quite a pleasant soup. I expect I’ll be making my modified version again.


Shredded BBQ Chicken (Slow Cooker Revolution), Apple & Brussels Sprouts Slaw (from A Cozy Kitchen)


One of my new favorite books, naturally. I figured this was a nice, simple recipe to start with. There really isn’t too much to this beyond rubbing the chicken with spices, dousing them with Stubb’s BBQ sauce, and then letting them cook for several hours. Pick a good barbecue sauce, and you’re good to go. The slaw paired rather nicely with the chicken, being a fair combination of sweet and vinegary (a little too vinegary, according to Geordie, but that’s the way I like it). Also, it’s nice to find a slaw that’s on the healthy side. This was a comfy sort of meal, quite nice for a week that’s been on the cool side, weather-wise.


Meatballs with Mushroom Pesto Cream Sauce (sauce recipe from A Taste of Home Cooking)


I rarely use a whole jar of pesto in one meal, so whenever I do use pesto, I seem to end up with a half-jar of it sitting in my fridge for months on end. This jar had only been in there for a week or two, and I made a point of it this week to use it up. The meatballs were ones I had made back in November while I was getting freezer meals together, so that was time and energy saved for this meal. All I had to do was boil the pasta and make the sauce, which was easy enough. I did make a few changes: instead of chicken broth, I used beef broth because that’s what I had, and then while the sauce simmered, I added in a tablespoon of flour to thicken it up a bit. Definitely changes I’ll keep in mind when I make this again, although I’d also add more mushrooms, possibly going so far as to do 24 ounces instead of just 8; they got a bit lost in the sauce. Even so, this turned out to be quite a lovely meal – a rich, creamy sauce spiked with flavorful pesto, which complemented the tender, juicy meatballs. A nice meal all-around, and one I’ll remember the next time I have half a jar of pesto stuck in the fridge.