This week I added a few new recipes to our menu, and here's what I thought of them.

1. BooMama's Asparagus

Use "our menu" link above to find the recipe.

The asparagus was, in a word, HEAVENLY. It looked, smelled and tasted wonderful. The girls even enjoyed it, and I was afraid they wouldn't. The dish was extremely quick and easy to prepare. Leftovers heated up in the microwave perfectly and stayed crisp. Grade: A+

2. Calle's Apple Burgers

1 pound turkey burger
1 large apple shredded with the peel on
1 Tbs sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
couple dashes of onion powder (except Liberty "helped" me, and she POURED the onion powder in)

Mix all ingredients together, shape into patties and grill. (I used a skillet on the stove top.) Makes five large burgers or a dozen little snack sized ones. Calle' says her girls love eating the tiny ones as snacks. For me, the recipe made eight large ones, but apparently not as large as the ones my friend makes.

The cinnamon and sugar in the recipe scared me at first. I was afraid they'd be dessert-like, but they weren't. They were wonderful! These were also quick and easy to prepare, and BONUS - two different neighbors came knocking to ask what I had cooked. They said the apartment hallway smelled delicious! :-) Liberty and Mercy picked at the new food (I served it plain), but at lunch today I put the leftovers on wheat buns with ketchup and pickles. They gobbled them up. (Ketchup covers a multitude of sins, and yes, I know ketchup isn't healthy, but really.) Grade: A-

3. Chicken Stirfry

1 package frozen oriental vegetables
1/2 c chicken broth
1/2 c apricot preserves
1/4 c soy sauce
1 inch ginger root grated
Crushed peanuts (optional, I omitted them.)

Boil frozen veggies according to the package directions. (I added chopped chicken pieces to the frozen veggies and boiled it all together.) In a small saucepan, combine all other ingredients and simmer. Pour mixture over vegetables, top with peanuts and serve with rice or pasta. I doubled the recipe at Calle's suggestion because I served the veggies over top of brown rice instead of to the side.

I've never prepared anything vaguely oriental, but we love Chinese food from restaurants, so I gamely gave this a try. The process of purchasing the ingredients presented a grand adventure in the grocery store. When I first looked into the freezer case for the frozen veggies, the only ones I found were around $8.00. I accidentally snorted, and a nearby Wal*Mart stocker asked if I was okay. Turns out those packages came with a sauce packet. The veggies-only packages were less than a dollar, and I was quite relieved. After reading all the labels on the chicken broth selection, I chose Swanson's Natural Goodness Chicken Broth - the box says 100% fat free, no MSG, 33% less sodium than our regular product - and I recognized all of the ingredients! I'd tell you what apricot jar I bought, but I've thrown the jar out already. I used one that said all fruit on the label. Another shopper and I had a blast reading the labels of all the soy sauces out loud to each other and trying to decide which was the best. We finally settled on the cheapest, and I told her I was going to put water in the bottle to cut the sodium in half. Then I realized I had no way of knowing whether the added water would change the sodium level, so I told her I'd just pretend it was better for us and leave it at that. The two of us cracked each other up repeatedly, and I wish I'd gotten her name so that we could have become friends. But alas, we parted ways, never to see each other again. And also, whatever perfume she wore smelled incredibly good. Next, I purchased ginger root for the first time in my life, and it thrilled me to an unreasonable extend. I'm really not sure why that was so wonderful for me, but there it is -- the highlight of my grocery trip was picking up a ginger root and taking it home with me.

The stirfry was quick and easy to prepare (which you will notice is important in all of my recipes), and it looked GORGEOUS on the plates. So gorgeous that I actually ran to find my camera.

(And I just now ran to find my camera so that I could show you the pictures, but my camera is nowhere to be found. So you'll have to imagine the beauty that was our supper.)

However, the girls picked the chicken chunks and the rice out and left the veggies. I couldn't blame them. The frozen veggies remained bland even with the sauce, and speaking of the sauce, it turned out very watery, not flavorful. I'm not sure if diluting the soy sauce was such a great idea! If I ever make this dish again (I'd like to give it a fair shot), I would not double the recipe (we had sauce aplenty), and I would wait until the fresh vegetables were in season (that frozen stuff tasted like water.) Grade: D+ but I think I could bring the grade up if I tried it with fresh ingredients. Also, peeling and grating the ginger root blessed my soul! I can't wait to use ginger again in another recipe.
1 Response
  1. DeAnn Says:

    Buy organic ketchup! That's what we do because it doesn't have the HFCS in it. At least it's a little bit healthier than the regular stuff! Plus, it tastes better! :)

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