I have officially reached that point of winter where I am over braised meats, gravies, and heavy meals. I am craving simple, fresh, and delicious food, not to mention the quicker meals. Even though it is winter, with the help of produce I froze in the fall and what I can get from the grocery store I can get a little taste of summer in the dead of winter! One thing I love about stir fry is the versatility. There is no right or wrong way to make it. Use what you have on hand, or is in season. It's the perfect opportunity to change up the flavors while having the same dish. And the fact that you get to make it all in one pan is definitely an added bonus.
I love, love, love, LOVE this vinaigrette!!! It is super easy to make, holds up well in the fridge, and is versatile for a variety of dishes. I try to keep some on hand but it usually doesn't last long. Dressings are one of those things that are so easy to make, but people just don't seem to think to do. Store bought ones are packed full of unnecessary preservatives that you can avoid by making it yourself at a fraction of the price. I came across a variation of this recipe and have tweaked the quantities to my personal taste, and made some substitutions. I am a huge ginger fan, so I prefer it to be very gingery. You can always start with less and add more to your taste, but I think more is definitely the way to go in this particular recipe! Store it in a half pint mason jar in the fridge and make sure you give it a thorough shake before using it. Give it a try on salad, in a stir fry, or rice bowl. It has officially become my go-to!
Warm weather is officially here, and I love summer cooking! Light, fresh, seasonal produce offers a nice break from the preserved and out of season fruits and veggies. Summers are busy for everyone, which leads to late dinners making it all too easy and convenient to order out or make something quick and unhealthy. One of my favorite parts about summer aka "grill season" is the ability to whip up a simple, delicious dinner in no time.
This whole "recipe" stemmed from sheer laziness. And I say "recipe" because it's merely a guideline that can be adjusted for quantities and herbs (which is why I didn't bother with quantities really). I wanted a healthy and light dinner, but I needed to pack for our move so the meal had to be mostly hands off with little prep (and minimal dirty dishes is always a perk). This one knocked it out of the park! Super simple, minimal dishes, and oh so delicious! It's amazing how sometimes the simplest meals can be the most delicious. Word of advise: make twice the amount of tomatoes and peppers you think you will eat. I had mine for leftovers the next day and they were better than the night before! Seriously, delicious.
Making chicken stock is much like making beef stock. It requires your bones/meat, aromatic vegetables, herbs of preference, peppercorns, salt, and water. The length of simmer time is considerably less than beef, due to the size difference in the animal. A general rule is the larger the animal, the longer the simmer time. Beef stock requires a long period of time (24-48 hours) to break down the collagen and extract the marrow flavor from the bones. Chicken bones are much smaller with less marrow so they do not take as long to break down and extract flavor (12-24 hours).
Because chicken is such a widely consumed and readily available meat, it is a stock that people will typically make over others. Beef marrow bones aren't something that you get when you purchase meat at the grocery store, you have to purchase them separately. Chicken stock can be made with either a roaster chicken carcass, or any bone scraps leftover from dinner.
If you don't have a whole chicken, save any drumstick/thigh/wing bones you have leftover from dinner. Because the bones are so small, the stock requires more in order to develop flavor. Save the bone scraps in a bag in the freezer until you get a good stockpile that you can use to make stock. However you gather your bones, making chicken stock is super easy and prevents waste. The taste difference between homemade and store bought is undeniable, and because chicken stock is a pantry staple it is well worth the effort!
Breakfast. Hands down my absolute favorite meal of the day. I could eat breakfast food any time of day, and particularly enjoy it for brinner, dinfast, or whatever clever name you have for breakfast for dinner. I love it so much that sometimes on the weekends I wake up wide awake at 6:00 am and can't think about anything other than what I want to make/eat for breakfast. I lie there trying to put it out of my mind and fall back asleep, and give up an hour or so later when I realize it isn't going to happen and get up and make it. Oh wait, that's just me?
The beauty of breakfast is it's diversity. So many different meats, so many different ways to cook eggs, the potatoes, the bread/toast options, and the pastries. Oh yeahhhhh, the pastries. Delicious? Yes. Unhealthy? Ohhhh yeah. Between the all purpose flour, butter, sugar, and cream, it's sinfully delicious. Because I maintain a healthy and active lifestyle, this is something that I just can't allow myself to indulge in on a regular basis. My conscience wont allow it, but I still want it.
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