Weeknight Dinner Recap: Vol. IX
Welcome to the ninth edition of Weeknight Dinner Recap! I'm so glad you stopped by to review what we made and ate this week and learn a little bit more about our lives - it's not just cook/feast/cook - but it sometimes is very close! This week featured an interesting array of meals that ranged from something new (for us!) to a couple favorite flavors re-visited. I'm all in favor of repeating specific meals that are easy and reliably delicious; during the week a great dinner is key to making sure your day ends on a happy (yummy) note. Plus! We had a very exciting Monday night that was totally out of the ordinary! And just when I thought weeknights couldn't be too fun...
Full Recap is right after the jump!
Sunday: I had heard about the lure of spiralized sweet potatoes before now, knowing that delicious meals and photos of them existed, but all of a sudden I got the rush to finally make them in our home. Out of nowhere, while meal planning, I exclaimed, "let's make sweet potato waffles!" And my husband, ever the team-player (and watching football no less), replied, "Yes! Let's do it." That may not read very exciting, but in my mind it was quite an exhilarated and boisterous, yet brief, discussion. I think I yelled when I made the statement. As I often do when we decide to try new recipes. You had to be there.
OH MY Sweet Potato Waffle Dreams. These were freaking awesome and delicious and amazing and can we make these every night?! Traditionally more of a breakfast item, we opted to do "brinner" and make it a sweet/savory meal. The recipe we used was from The Toasted Pine Nut and just altered the amount of sweet potato used (2 large ones versus just one). The waffles came out perfectly and were incredible with some pure maple syrup and fresh berries. Side note: maple syrup is yummy. I need it more often. If I didn't know better, I'd have thought we were having a lovely breakfast (dinner) at an old New England Inn. So scrumptious and all natural, and naturally gluten free, I cannot recommend making these sweet potato waffles enough. Any time of day, I'm pretty sure they'd satisfy almost any craving, but especially that one that wants a slightly sweet - and a little savory - waffle. YUM.
Monday: We interrupt your regularly scheduled dinner plans for the following event: We went to the Bruins game! My husband got tickets to their last pre-season game at home so we decided to skip a real dinner and head to the rink. Or rather, TD Garden, but you know what I mean.
Wary of my GF options for the evening, I scouted out info online before we went and found a decent number of options. However, once we arrived and settled at our seats, I basically wanted whatever was closest and easiest to obtain en masse ( I had come from the gym). Not my healthiest night, I enjoyed two bunless all-beef Kayem hot dogs with peppers and onions (yum!) and then waited patiently until I could get a big popcorn to snack on for the rest of the game. And a bottled water. I have no shame admitting my love of that cheap, stadium-style, pre-buttered popcorn. I'm sure it's awful for you, but it keeps me occupied and full while watching live sports - an infrequent event - so I indulge. Wow, it's salty. But delicious for the setting!
If you were wondering, the Bruins won! And we had a fun weeknight out enjoying hockey, eating silly food, and pretending it was a weekend. Little did I realize that one late Monday would lead to a surprising level of exhaustion the rest of the week! Oops. Growing up... :)
Tuesday: Thankfully, all day Monday we had planned for Tuesday's dinner by using our slow cooker to make awesome BBQ chicken! I love using the slow cooker to aid in the joyful taco Tuesday meal creation. This time around we made super simple BBQ chicken with a mix of spicy and non-spicy BBQ sauce and let it cook for the duration of the work day. Topped with corn and homemade bread+butter pickles, this dinner was quite a treat! And somewhat healthy I might add, especially since we used chicken rather than pork or beef.
Once again, I dare say one of those heartier options may have had more flavor to contribute to the final taco, but overall these were still very delicious. Slow cooking is going to show up more often around here as we ease into the cooler months since we love great chili and anything else that will cook itself during the weekday (or weekend) so that when it comes to sitting down to dinner we can put it all together more quickly and relax more together while we eat. Balance!
Of note: those pickles are fantastic! Seth's parents make multiple batches every year and I always look forward to having a stash in the fridge ready for topping tacos or burgers, or just snacking.. :)
Wednesday: Now, you may have noticed that we made lamb burgers fairly recently, and those were a big hit! So delicious and full of flavor, but this time I wanted to try using the same meat blend and form it into meatballs and avoid the pan frying. For health! Let me tell you: this meal was a knockout! And you know me, I'm up front when dinners are so good I want them night after night and this is one of them.
Greek lamb meatballs that were baked (!!) and were entirely gluten free couldn't be simpler to make and had an amazing flavor. Seth added a few extra spices to enhance the recipe, and make them spicier, which worked perfectly! Served over our favorite zucchini noodles (still in season!) with a go-to Greek yogurt sauce, this dinner was just awesome. And quite healthy! Baking meatballs works just as well, in my opinion, instead of frying them to brown first, and they were simple to put together. The yogurt sauce is an Ottolenghi recipe that I adore (and I only ommitted the sour cream): Greek yogurt, lemon juice, lemon zest, olive oil, salt and pepper. Voilà! A sauce worthy of making for any number of reasons, one of which is that it's simple to prepare and packs a light, but majorly flavorful punch.
I cannot wait to have this dish again and I'd highly recommend making it in your home, too. I'm also on a major Mediterranean food kick lately, and need to get my passport in order. It's about time! :)
Thursday: There was a late, late September heat wave this week and last and it broke Thursday night! It finally cooled off and the humidity level returned to a place where I can finally (maybe?) leave my hair down! Hooray! So to celebrate the normal fall air making an appearance, we used the oven for our favorite baked scallops!
The simplest of meals with not many steps and quick cook time, we were enjoying these delicious dishes before the new, revived season of Will and Grace began. Our go-to method for these is to use GF Panko breadcrumbs from Aleia's Artisan Foods which are the best option for baking seafood items such as this, in my opinion. The crunch comes out perfectly!
Hoenstly, I love serving them in individual portions because 1) it's adorable, 2) no need to debate the portion sizes, and 3) they bake really nicely in small dishes (although we've done the same in a large casserole pan - just as good). I really want to have a dinner party and serve guests something yummy in these All-Clad pans. Maybe it will be scallops, and maybe you'll be the guest! Only time will tell... I love this meal because it's flavorful and filling without being much of a "burden" timewise.
Full disclosure: on our way home we popped into a new restaurant in our neighborhood for a glass of wine and an appetizer! So by the time we got home, the scallops were more than enough for a full dinner without anything else. Cheers to the weekend, right? :)
Friday: Hello! So glad to see the weekend once again and well, we don't have much in the way of plans. I'm thrilled! It seems like when you have barely anything set for a weekend is when some of the most fun times can happen!
Stay connected via Instagram and Stories for all of our weekend food adventures and guess what? Bar Bites - my curated guide of where we go out to eat in Boston (and beyond) is going live on Sunday! I cannot wait to share it with you! Everywhere we go and love right now all listed in one convenient location, and being updated regularly! Plus, it has some cute notes as to why we love each place that's included. Nostalgia at its finest, and a great list of awesome restaurants. Be sure to check it out!
I hope you have a delicious weekend!