We had guests over for a lovely Sunday night dinner yesterday
Hubby and I, having never had any formal training, fancy ourselves as budding chefs. We watch cooking shows and then try our hand at doctoring up our dishes. I admit we have no knife skills, burn things often, and have many flops. But it’s enjoyable and we really get into it. My 9 year old serves as a sort of referee and sometimes gopher. Sometimes she’s the cook when it comes to mixing up something or even cutting with her Montessori knife (I started her early on cutting her fruits and veggies).
So last night we made a special dinner using our best china and our most formidable cooking skills (ha ha ha ha!).
We have actually known since before we moved this summer that this dinner was planned but we didn’t started fully planning our meal about a week ago.
Here’s how it went…My husband chose the protein, I chose the dessert and we worked together to figure out the side dishes.
One of our guests is gluten free so instead of making separate dishes we did our best to make yummy things everyone could partake of.
My husband chose lamb as his protein and we perused various videos on youtube on the best way to cook lamb. I was particularly looking for one by Michel Roux Jr. as I like his simplistic way of cooking and make basic ingredients their best. We didn’t find the boneless leg of lamb we were looking for but we used the ideas from one of his sessions on The Chef’s Protege where she shows potential proteges how to cook rack of lamb with potatoes and veggies.
For our veggies we decided to do sliced roast potatoes from this recipe minus the parmesan and roasted brussel sprouts. At the last minute I decided to add sweet potato puree. I admit too much Masterchef pushed me this direction but based on how much of a hit it was we will be repeating for Thanksgiving.
The potatoes we sliced on a mandoline tossed with olive oil, pepper, salt, and rosemary and roasted.
The lamb was rolled up with spices, browned and roasted in the oven.
My dessert (yaay!) was a hit. It was very simple to make too. A dairy free and gluten free Coconut Cream Mango Mousse (I got the recipe here) which was delicious! Coupled with Coconut Tuiles. I felt the dessert might need a sauce but I was wrong. The Coconut Tuiles had some problems because I don’t have a non-stick mat. Something I hope to remedy very soon. But even with that the mousse and what tuiles we could scrap off the pan were delicious, not too heavy following the satisfying dinner and a hit with everyone.
All in all it was a very successful dinner and we’re pumped to do more. BTW there were absolutely no leftovers!
My grocery shopping continues on it’s new turn where if something is on sale I load up and then buy things like milk, eggs, and veggies on a regular weekly basis. I should write a whole post on this but I’m still tweeking things and finding the right method for our family. My grocery bill last week was $15. I bought 25 pounds of carrots, 2 bunches of celery, a bag of Bob’s Redmill Flour which was on sale, some onions, .
Last week’s dinner went well. I made the Basil covered Talapia that we purchased from Costco. It’s not as tasty as I imagine so I won’t be buying it again. I used some mushrooms in our fridge and also some of the bounty of apples we had and made pork chops with an apple mushroom sauce. That was delicious and definitely to be repeated.
This week dinner is much of the same. I’m on a routine with a basic dinner idea for each night. Substitutions or alterations to be made on the fly. Here goes…
Monday – Talapia with rice
Tuesday – Probably Chicken Curry
Wednesday – Surprise Me!
Thursday – Chili from the freezer
Friday – Turkey Quesadillas
What’s on your menu?
- Read some Menu Planning articles for tips on planning your weekly menu
- Need delicious easy recipes for your family? Simplified Dinners is your template for fresh easy recipes every day.