Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Tasty Tuesday again

Late again, huh? When will I learn? I even cooked this on Monday but am just now getting around to posting it. And how awful is it that it’s been a week since my last post? Bad blogger. I’ll get better at this. I actually ended up feeling quite sickly this past weekend and had to miss out on a much anticipated white water rafting trip so I’ve been a little out of sorts. I’m starting to feel on the mend (just a cough and some congestion remaining) and like I can tackle some typical things: like a busy work week and some good home cooking/baking.

This week’s Tasty Tuesday menu: Cheesy stuffed shells with yummy meaty sauce and baked carrots

It’s nothing ground-breaking in the “trying new foods” category for me but I’ve never made any kind of stuffed pasta so it seemed fun.

The carrots cook for longer so I got those ready and in the oven first. It was almost a joke how easy they were. Drizzle with some olive oil and throw some thyme on it. Yup. That's it. It was fun to use fresh thyme though cause I don’t think I’ve ever used fresh herbs before… unless fresh mint for mojito’s counts.

It's not really "Amy's cooking" without a leeetle bit of burnt-ness :)

And here are all my ingredients for the pasta - ready to be constructed…

This goes into the oven with the carrots...

And then bam! It’s a meal!

Total hit: the husband loved the whole thing, especially the meaty wine sauce.

In other news. I am totally floored by how much growth my little spinach plant has made since just about 10 days ago! Compare for yourselves...


At least I think it’s spinach. I’ve never grown anything before so it all looks like little green leafy stuff and I seem to have lost my cute little map that I neatly drew out for my garden beds. I’ll just find out once I eat it soon enough.

And finally, the 5k team is official! I signed up this past Sunday and our team name is: "For the Dairy Pillows." hahaha. Should be fun... now all I need is to prep for it!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A New Tradition...

I realize it's Wednesday but I really wanted to post this yesterday (hence the name on the pic) but simply ran out of time... I want to start a little tradition so here goes.

I am a baker. Simple as that. I love making cookies, cupcakes, brownies, eclairs, you name it. I don't really cook and I don't consider myself to be very good at it but I really want to change this. If I make dinner it's something along the lines of mac and cheese, grilled cheese (yes, I l.o.v.e cheese) or some easy chicken recipe.

So. In an effort to change this pattern, I want to try one totally new or experimental meal each week... Can you guess what day I picked??
Tuesday!! ...simply to be alliterative :) I was p
retty excited about it so I made a picture and everything!

And my first meal to try? STEAK! I'm not a huge steak eater (though I do enjoy it) and I've certainly never cooked it so I figured I'd try it out!
It went moderately well. I set out to make steak along with green beans and a salad. I never eat green beans but I realize I should be less of a picky eater so I'm TRYING to eat some different foods. And I found a recipe that sounded interesting so why not, right? The steaks were simple enough: I seasoned them with salt and pepper and tossed them on the grill feeling pretty good about things.

I went out about 6-7 min later to check on them and the flame wasn't visible anymore. I thought "well that seems funny for a grill." I turned one over and it was totally raw! Well, there were a few grill marks on there which means the grill was functional for at least a minute or two. But it turns out it ran out of propane! geesh. So I resorted to pan frying them... the way the recipe said to anyway.
They turned out yummy and I would totally make steak again (now that I'm a pro and all). Oh, and the green beans were actually pretty good, too. Meaning: I totally ate them!

I just cooked them, tossed them in olive oil, some mint, lime juice, salt, and pepper. Easy and not too shaby tasting. Oh, and the salad is old hat, but it was still yummy!

Everything looks so tiny in this picture but I think it's just the plate that's huge. seeing the pictures now it all looks so simple but it felt like a decent accomplishment at the time :)

Now I'm off for a run ...then I'll research ideas for next weeks tasty tuesday recipe!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Highs and lows...

...ever played this before? It’s insanely easy and I’m always glad when I don’t have much to list on the lows. Here goes!


Yes. My phone was stolen. Truly heartbreaking. It happened somehow last Sunday as I was leaving a BBQ at Lincoln Park. Excellent park, mediocre barbeque, terrible ending. Totally not fair. As soon as I knew my phone was officially gone I naively thought the person who had it would either call someone I know to help return it or they would hang on to it and answer it when someone calls… again, to help return it. But nooooo. My phone was taken by a punk ass twerp who probably just wanted to sell it on craigslist for 450 bucks. Ugh. I realize it’s just a phone and it’s not the end of the world… but at the same time, I was a typical iPhone user and had my entire. life. on that thing. It’s been annoying but I’m mostly just annoyed that there are so many people out there who steal things. It’s nauseating.


We finally found a new bed to replace the totally janky bed we had. It was only a few years old but it was from Ikea and to put it delicately: it was garbage. Very saggy indeed. We upgraded and it was delivered last night. It’s already exceeding my expectations. Husband even built a nice bed frame mostly from stuff we already had on hand. I think it turned out really well! He’s so handy!

We didn’t realize how much higher this bed would be compared to our old one. Dang! We ended up taking those legs off so now it just sits on the frame he made.

We haven’t been able to eat anything from it yet, but I still like the garden. This is my first time really trying to grow something and it’s going... weeeeell, it’s going ok I suppose. I already know I’ll be doing plenty of things differently next year. Like trying to use more starter plants from a nursery or home depot – it feels like cheating to me but I’m learning it’s a necessary evil. But I’ll also try to plant stuff in doors next year to try and get a jump start on the short growing season we have.

We met a fun young married couple a few months back and have been meaning to get together with them for quite some time. Lucky for us, they had a father’s day BBQ and invited us! Delish. I love a good homemade burger. Mmmmm. And a little secret? I prefer not to eat burgers (or pretty much any sandwich for that matter) that don’t involve lettuce. I need that crunch.

I whooped the husband at cribbage!! Whooo. Check it out!

He always seems to be good at every single game (well, just don’t ask him about this morning’s golf game) so any time I beat him it feels soooo good.

And finally. I found some girls to sign up for my 5k run later this summer! It’s the same 5k I’ve done the past two years and it's also the same 5k that I have yet to run the whole thing. I think we're gonna have a fun team name this year though. I'll post that once it's official.

That's all for now!!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

running with desserts

Am I the only one who mentally makes goals? I think not. I usually don't make much of them but right now I'm gonna put two of them on the page in the hopes that I can document any progress I make with these goals... they are:
  • I want to run a legit, organized 5k this year. I've done two 5k's in the past but I didn't actually run/jog the entire thing. So in my book? It doesn't count. Ultimately I would like to run a 10k. But 6.21 miles?? That will be quite a challenge for me. The farthest I've ever run at once is 3.5 miles (which was not during the officially organized 5k. ugh.) and until a couple years ago, running was my enemy. I hated it and wanted nothing to do with it. So a 5k seems like the perfect goal right now.
  • And secondly, I want to make homemade ravioli. Completely different topic, I know. Not just any ravioli... some YUMMY ravioli. I'm thinking spinach and cheese but if meat makes its way into the mix then so be it. Cause I like meat.
No progress is really being made on the ravioli front, which is odd because I think it would be so much easier than all the running, but today I finally got outside for a run (first outside run this year!). The weather is finally summery in Seattle so I hit the streets of D-ridge this evening but quickly realized I need to plan ahead better. I guzzled some water before I ran but about 20 seconds into my run my aching tummy reminded me I didn't have any dinner. Why did I substitute dinner with some random desserts??
Allow me to explain. I
love baking. I get on random baking kicks and tonight's kick was different because I just wanted a single fresh-baked cookie. So I googled "single serving recipes" (sidenote: you will never hear about me "bing-ing" anything. As far as I'm concerned, that site is inferior and quite frankly I don't think it is deserving of verb status) and came up with two things I wanted to try... and yes, one of them was a cookie. I made a double recipe of a chocolate chip cookie (double because David wanted his own once he caught wind of my plan) and a single brownie (which David didn't even know about 'cause I'm sneaky like that). Neither were that impressive, though I liked the brownie more and would consider making it again.
Long story short: two lil desserts does not make for adequate running grub. Next time I'll be smarter.
Or maybe I'll carbo load on some of that fresh-made ravioli... yeah??