Weekly Menu

Seriously is it Sunday again???  I mean didn’t we just have a Sunday??? Man time is just flying by. So how are you my favorite TKW Family? I’m pretty good; actually no I’m great.  I had such an awesome weekend that everything bad that happened last week was canceled out by my Friday and Saturday.

You see Friday was our anniversary. Now with us we have 2 anniversaries though they fall on the same day.  We’ve been married for 9 years (though it feels like 90) however we’ve been together for 20. That man has made me a better person in every single way.  Thing is, I wasn’t looking for love, wasn’t looking for anything as I thought my life was complete.  Then he walked into the room and I felt it… it’s like my heart was racing but yet time stood still.  I held my breath while having the wind knocked out of me.  Even before we even said a single word I felt my split-apart become whole.  My soul was complete. My soulmate found me.

So Friday we both took the day off of work and had an ‘us’ day.  We had a great breakfast, went shopping for candy and treats then hit up this AMAZING theater!  I’ll tell you about the movie in a second.  OMG this theater was unlike any I have ever been in!  We’re talking leather recliner seats .. yes RECLINER! And talk about clean!  OMG I’d actually sit on the floor it was so clean!  The sound system was incredible and that screen.. GINORMOUS!  Now the movie… I got to pick it so I went full on chick and saw “Bad Moms”.  OMG people if you haven’t seen it, GO!  Though definitely not for kids or prudish.  I was laughing so hard that I had tears pouring down my face! I will never, EVER, look at a hoodie the same way again!

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After dinner we decided to go see the Fantabulous in-laws.  They took us out for dinner and then back to their house for dessert and a movie.  Sure we could have went out on the town, hit up a bar, or just stayed by ourselves but to me, my day was perfect.  This even spilled into Saturday.  Since we didn’t get home until 2:30am the night prior, I actually slept in until 9.  Since he was still out like a light I went grocery shopping and then came home to cook. I had a photo shoot I had to get done but I was in such a groove I actually ended up making up a 2nd recipe and did that photo shoot as well.  I made us great lunches and dinners and then…*giggle* then my darling husband came out to the kitchen around 6:30 and said “Um honey, do you think maybe we could um, kinda sorta….you know… um..” before he continued I chuckled and said “Sure anything for you..”

…so we got in the car and went to Home Depot.  LOL  Apparently this was our “post anniversary” honeymoon. Today I’m in the kitchen until he needs me in the garage to help with a ladder or something not-girlish. I have some leftover steak sandwich filling so I’m baking up some potatoes to make Philly Cheesesteak stuffed taters for lunch. Also I made last week these Maple Cinnamon Melting Sweet Potatoes… OMG… no OMG!  I literally could have kissed myself these were so good and OMG EASY!!!  I’m making another batch now just so I can take pictures to post the recipe!

Oh… gotta run!  I just heard the timer ding which means there’s one minute left on the oven.  I can already smell the brown sugar and cinnamon caramelizing from those potatoes.  Anyway, enjoy this week’s Weekly Menu!  Get out of that same ol’ recipe rut and incorporate a couple of mine into the mix!

Monday –   Crispy Baked Oven-Fried Honey BBQ Wings
Tuesday – Pittsburgh Style Grilled Cheese n’at
Wednesday –  Asian Chicken Lettuce Cups
Thursday – Chunky Portabella Parmesan Veggie Burgers
Friday –  Breakfast Pizzas
Saturday –  Sunrise Breakfast Taters
Sunday – BBQ Meatloaf Stack
Dessert of the week – Chocolate Chunk Zucchini Muffin Cakes

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How to properly freeze Brussels Sprouts

Yeah yeah yeah I know you don’t like Brussels Sprouts.  They’re green and cabbage.  Your mother only made them on Thanksgiving – boiled and swimming in a gallon of butter.  They were mushy and even the dog turned it’s nose up at them when you tried sneaking them to it under the table.  I heard it before because I said it before. I HAAAAAAAAAAAATED these things growing up.  OMG it was absolute torture for me when I was told “Lori, you are not allowed to leave the table until you finish everything on your plate. ” In my whole life the longest I sat at that table was 2 hours. And it was hell.  I had my own pity party.  I whined.  I then played with my food, to which I got in trouble for that.  I begged the to eat it.  Nope.  Then over came my 40 pound Maine Coon cat.  Yes 40 pounds.  Folks this cat was pretty much the size of a medicine ball with legs.  He was GINORMOUS but so loveable.  He was, as my Dad would say, ‘lurpy’.  Just very ‘do-di-doh’.  lol

So over waddles this cat, rubbing against my legs, purring and eventually standing up on his fat ham-hock legs pawing at arm to give him a bite of food.  Yes, you know where this is going.  So I cut off a piece of that mushy, butter-laden Brussels sprouts and put it up to his mouth.  He sniffed it, licked it once and then stopped.  He then looked up at me, almost knowing I wasn’t going to eat it, took one for the team.  That damn, beautious cat ate all of my Brussels Sprouts!  He went to TOWN!

Brussel Sprouts

However to prove that I ate some and didn’t give it to the dog, I had to take the teeniest of bites as my Mom was going to check my mouth to make sure I at least ate some.  So I did this, while suffering from certain pending death. Once I/the cat was done eating them I called into the living room with an angelic “I’m done”.  Mom came out to the kitchen to inspect not the plate but rather she SMELLED the dog’s breath, checked the garbage and my mouth.
No for real, Brussels Sprouts are AMAZING!

Tuesday’s Tip with The Kitchen Whisperer – Storing Leftover Tomato Paste

Marrying into an Italian family I pretty much should own stock in tomato paste.  Not only is it used in pretty much every pasta dish I make but it’s also amazing in beef dishes, pizza sauce or as a great rich flavor to dishes.  The problem is most recipes only call for a Tbl or 3 of it and then you’re left with the rest of the can.  Now sure you can scoop it out and store it in the fridge only to watch it end up at the back shelf to die…alone.  Yeah admit it, you’ve done that.  Lord knows I have.  Well enough of that!  On today’s Tuesday’s Tip with The Kitchen Whisperer I’m going to share with you my tip for Storing Leftover Tomato Paste.

 

Tuesday-Tip

Now unless you’re making sauce or the like in bulk you almost never will use a full can of tomato paste (not the larger ones at least) all in a single recipe. If you do then definitely share what you’re making as this is new to me. Anyway, most of you are left with stuff in the can.  DO NOT THROW IT OUT!  Please… don’t.  Instead do what I do… Freeze it!  Seriously, freeze it!

All I do is line a sheet pan with parchment paper, spoon out Tbl size dollops of the paste and place them on to the pan.  Next I flash freeze them which means I put them into the freezer, uncovered until they are rock solid (a few hours).  Once they are solid I remove the pan from the freezer, place the lumps of tomato paste into a freezer safe container and leave them in the freezer.  For me they last several months.  To use in my sauce all I do is grab a few frozen lumps, toss them in the pan and VOILA! Perfect tomato paste without having to fret over only using part of a can.

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Color Coding your Weekly Menus

 This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #PilotYourLife #CollectiveBias

TKW Pens11

So being a dual engineer I’m pretty much a perfectionist.  Things have to be in their place, I have to keep things organized and I live by my lists. Ever since middle school, yes middle school, I’ve always had at least one notebook that I kept my ‘life’ in; my schedule.  Whether it was plans I had, things I had to get done or ideas of mine it was kept in a notebook.  So being how I am, I’m extremely particular of the types of notebooks and pens I use.  I prefer sketchbooks to be honest.  I hate college-ruled paper – sorry but I write ‘girly’.  I dot my ‘I’s with hearts and draw on my paper.  And pens – yes pens.  I am SUPER picky on what I use.  I personally LOVE Pilot G2 pens!  They write smooth and HELLO the colors to choose from… OMG!  When the opportunity to work with them and show how I keep my life organized came up, I was super excited.
Get organized with Pilot G2 Pens and my Notebook Tips!

Weekly Menu

Oh Sunday how I really am not ready for you to show your face. You mean laundry, a rush to get shoots and posts done, errands, all day in the kitchen (Okay so that I enjoy) and that I only have a few hours left of not wearing real pants. But I can’t prevent it from happening so I might as well embrace it.  Today’s a busy day here in the TKW Test Kitchen.  I’ve been craving my Mom’s stuffed cabbages in the worst way.  I think it’s a summer thing as growing up she always made them with a big bowl of her buttery mashed potatoes.  When I was at the store the other day they had huge heads of cabbage on sale and immediately I started craving these cabbages.  So right now, as I’m typing this, I have her stuffed cabbages in the oven. However idiot me forgot to put a catch tray underneath my pan and tomato sauce dripped on the bottom of my brand new oven.  It STINKS to high heaven but they should be done soon.

Now the trick, without turning on the self cleaning part, is how to remove the blobbed tomato sauce on the bottom. I’m thinking hot water and a baking soda paste should work.  What do you use?

Earlier this morning I made Italian hot sausage stuffed banana pepper meatballs which were KILLER!  Later I have to make buckeye brownies for my boss.  I haven’t baked him anything in a while and since he’s back to work after a hip surgery I thought it would be a nice treat.  Yeah I’m an awesome employee!  LOL

So how was your week?

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Mine was LOOOOOOOOOOOONG!  I swear my week lasted for 10 days straight!  Last Sunday we worked, yes we, worked on my car until 2:50am (remember I get up at 5 now for work).  We had to replace the leaking radiator and condenser.  However nothing is ever easy for us.  He literally spent 4 hours driving around all day because he would find something else broke or the part he bought was missing pieces. It was NOT a fun day – I mean I had grease under my nails AND on my face/chin/chest/butt – how does that even happen?  Monday we went car shopping which eh, wasn’t bad.  We went to 3 different places last week and met 2 really nice salesmen.  They didn’t try to ‘sell’ us or even ask for our numbers to call and pester us.  The one said “If it’s okay with you I’d like to give you my card.  I won’t ask for your number as I respect your privacy.  If you want to look more then please call me at your leisure.”  Have to admit, was pretty impressed with that.

With all that I think we settled in the car I’ll get.  Now it’s not what I want.  What I want is a Mercedes SUV BUT I drive over 110 miles a day for work and that’s just plain stupid to invest in that vehicle.  I currently have a civic with 165k miles on it and it’s a champ.  It’s never had a problem – the radiator and condenser is my fault as I hit a trailer hitch.  So I’ll most likely go with another civic but the touring edition. I mean if I’m in the car that much I might as well be comfy, right?

What else?  So the shoulder it still hurting pretty bad so I’m going to see my shoulder surgeon on Thursday.  More than likely he’ll send me straight for an arthrogram as I can’t get cortisone shots due to my being allergic. I’m a hot mess to say the least.  So now I’m babying it.  Oh so get this.. we’re having our work picnic in 2 weeks and my name got signed up for kickball.  Now THAT should be interesting. They all know my shoulder is bad so all I have to do is kick the ball – someone will run the bases for me.  I hope!

Oh my timer is going off on the oven which means my cabbages are done.  With that, have an amazing day and enjoy this week’s Weekly Menu!

Monday –   Mom’s Classic Pot Roast
Tuesday – Caramelized Scallops in a Lemon Wine Sauce
Wednesday –  Grilled Pineapple Chunk Teriyaki Turkey Burger
Thursday – Pot Roast Breakfast Hash
♥ ♥ ♥ Friday –  Happy Anniversary to us!
Saturday –  Cajun Shrimp Po’Boy
Sunday – Coconut Panko Crusted
Dessert of the week Ultimate Mounds Brownies

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