For those nights you just really can’t deal

Listen up here, I know this title may be shocking to some of you as this is a blog about recipes, but we all have those moments that we are just too tired or bored with our go-to meals that we need a little help from the outsiders. Below are some suggestions for the times where we can’t be bothered with grocery lists, grocery store lines, and just the whole thinking of how and what to make.

Blue Apron First batter up is, Blue Apron – Their claim to fame is: “A better way to cook. Fresh ingredients, great recipes  delivered weekly to your home”.

PlatedOur second contender (by the way this is in no specific order, definitely not in terms of preference either) is Plated – which is similar to the above in that they want you to: “Cook something extraordinary tonight. Chef-designed recipes & fresh ingredients delivered to your door”.

Fresh 20Last is this little gem that I referenced in my weeknight dinner recipe. It somehow got buried in the rambling of my blog post, Fresh 20 – means shopping for 20 Ingredients in 20 Minutes to prep the entire week’s meals. It takes an hour at the start of your week to save you valuable time during busy weeknights.

I don’t want to hear any of you ever sigh and say “I just can’t”. Good food doesn’t have to be a pain in the butt. Get your A game on and check out one of these sites to help you eat well with minimal effort.

Happy Eating, XO.

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Quinoa fruit parfait

They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. If anything Dr. OZ says that breakfast should be eaten like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper. So if those are the expectations: What better way to kick off your morning than with a healthy quinoa breakfast parfait? This recipe calls for enough to share with others.

  • 2 (6 oz) containers yogurt (I like to use fat free french vanilla, strawberry or peach flavors)
  • 1/4 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups fruit (mixed berries or chopped peaches)

Optional yummy items:

  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped toasted almonds or pecans
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

*Before we dive in to the instructions, I need to add my two cents. I’m not a morning person and typically don’t like to do a lot of cooking for my breakfast. Because this recipe calls for cooked and cooled quinoa, I suggest making it the night before and letting it cool in the fridge. This way there’s even less prep time involved.

If you took my advice above, you’ve got it made (literally) – now all you need to do is layer. Otherwise, cook the quinoa per the instructions on the box and let it cool. Spoon your yogurt in to a glass and layer the quinoa and fruit on top. For the optional ingredients, sprinkle in the almonds or pecans throughout and top with cinnamon.

Happy Eating, XO.

Simla mirch paneer

Merely translates to bell pepper paneer. If you don’t know what paneer is, google it. (Their explanation will be much better than my cliché response: its like “cottage” cheese). Point here is to reuse the lovely ingredients you purchased for the Goan Shrimp Curry recipe. Swap out the shrimp for paneer and the coconut milk for green bell peppers. Yes, its just that simple! Now, I will say there are many ways to prepare this dish, but this one is the easiest, as well as, my favorite.
  • 1 chopped medium yellow spanish onion (vidalia is too sweet)
  • 2 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp. of the minced garlic
  • 2 tsp. Tumeric powder
  • 2 tsp. Cumin (the powder or seeds, I personally hate the seeds and always use powder)
  • 2 tsp. Coriander powder
  • 2 tsp. Garam Masala
  • 2 tsp. Ginger powder (I tend to think fresh is too strong, but would work fine)
  • Red chili powder to taste
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 2 chopped green bell peppers (keep the diced size similar to the size you cut the paneer so it all cooks well and evenly together. Also, Green is best in my opinion as red & yellow tend to have a sweeter flavor that would detract from this dish).
  • 250 gm Paneer (Store bought paneer is fine, I know your moms probably make it from scratch, oh well. Dice into cubes).

Create the tadka (remember that fun word we learned previously? No? Its just browning the spices in hot oil, 3 tablespoons of oil on high heat) then add tomato paste (note I use the paste vs. most people who use actual tomatoes. Feel free to use either, I just think real tomatoes have too high of a water content making the dish more wet & I prefer the sabzi to be dry), chopped onions and bell pepper. Once the tomato paste has melted and mixed in with the veggies add the cubed paneer. Cook stove top on medium heat for 15 minutes. Serve with rice or roti.

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Happy Eating, XO.

#teamtruffle

So the best thing I have been hearing from people is that Jess and Sonia have the same voice. No one can differentiate who writes what post, because we have the same sense of humor, writing style, cooking/recipe style. Let me fill you in on a little secret, that was kind of the point & reasoning behind our fab collabo. Anyway, instead of keeping up the cryptic façade of who is writing this post, I will have to go ahead and spill the beans. Only because Jess is obsessed with all things TRUFFLE (you name it: fries, mac & cheese, mashed potatoes, popcorn-check out her recipe, it is DIVINE). Having said that, she has now gotten me on the truffle bandwagon. I, too, am now OBSESSED. So in honor of Jess and missing our last face time date, I wanted to share this recipe with y’all.

•Kosher or Sea salt (something course).
•1/2 cup heavy cream (I tried to lighten this up and did half & half, I mean can you blame a girl: butter, cheese, cream. It was getting a lil cray even for my fattie/foodie side).
•3 ounces white truffle butter (should be about $7, I bought a 4 oz package for $7.99. Yes its expensive, yes its different, you tell us worth it or not. Also if you aren’t a fan of truffle butter or have skeptics coming to dinner perhaps use 2 oz. It’s a strong flavor so no one will hate you for cutting back, I stuck with 3 though because its “damn delish”).
•Freshly ground black pepper
•1 (8.82-ounce) package tagliatelle dried pasta (or any other egg fettuccine, Trader joes has a cheap egg papardelle)
•3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives
•3 ounces Parmesan (shaved thin with a vegetable peeler or be lazy like me and have them shave it at the cheese counter for you).

Add 1 tablespoon salt to a large pot of water and bring to a boil & cook pasta.
Meanwhile, in a large (12-inch) saute pan, heat the cream over medium heat until it comes to a simmer. Add the truffle butter, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Lower the heat to very low, and swirl the butter until it melts. Keep warm over very low heat. When the pasta is cooked, reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water, then drain & add the pasta immediately (you don’t want the starchy noodles to clump together sitting in a side bowl, not that it happened to me, ok gawsh). Add the drained pasta to the saute pan and toss it with the truffle-cream mixture. As the pasta absorbs the sauce, add as much of the reserved cooking water, as necessary, to keep the pasta very creamy. (I added like 3 tbsp. not even). Serve the pasta & garnish each serving with a generous sprinkling of chives and shaved Parmesan. Serve immediately so the sauce doesn’t over-thicken. Also the original recipe says that this makes 2 portions, but let’s be honest here…this dish is DECADENT! So I’d say it is realistically a starter course or side dish for 4 servings. Yup that’s it, can’t believe how quick such a fancy dish can be? Well, make it and find out for yourself. Make sure to comment below on your thoughts! Or tweet at us with your opinion: #teamtruffle worth the $ or not.

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p.s. less than one month till the dynamic duo’s birthday. #justsaying.

Happy Eating, XO.