Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Irish Dinner

Sorry for the late post, but we had my dad's birthday dinner last night. And now to the review of our irish dinner.

I thought it was delicious. The food was a little saltier than my family usually has, but it was still wonderful. The highlight was definitely my mom's Irish Brown Bread. Every year she makes it for this meal, and I forget how much I love it. The two loaves she made have the base for my lunch or breakfast every day since Saturday. We also made corned beef, cabbage, and mixed vegetables.

For the corned beef, we just rubbed herbs into a corned brisket. We cooked it in the slow cooker with potatoes, turnips, carrots, and onions all day on Sunday. The cabbage was easy and quick. We just chopped and pan fried it with olive oil, garlic, and onions. I'll put the irish bread recipe in the Recipes page. The bread is very good warmed up with just a little bit of butter. It isn't crumbly like a lot of breads, and it strong enough to hold plenty of meat, cheese, veggies, or other sandwich toppings.

I'm working on trying to attach pictures, but a lot of them seem to be sideways when I upload them. Hopefully I can overcome this glitch and get some pictures of my meals uploaded soon!

If you have any questions or comments, post them here on the site or email me at talesofateenagelocalvore@gmail.com. I check it regularly and I'd be happy to answer any questions.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Fast Food

This is somewhat similar to my last post, but this past week has been very busy so I've needed more quick recipes. The best one that I can think of is Chicken. I'm not even putting this on the Recipes page because it is so easy. All you do is take some chicken, whether it's a breast or a whole chicken, drizzle it with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and put in the oven at about 400°F for about an hour. My family usually makes a whole chicken because there are five people to feed, but you can easily cook a smaller portion or even save some for leftovers.

Another quick family favorite at my house is Quesadillas. This week we found a local tortilla company so this is the first quesadilla I have eaten in months. Yum! The company is Tumaro's Gourmet Tortillas, which is located in Providence, Rhode Island. All you do is put the tortilla in a frying pan and sprinkle cheese and whatever else you want inside. Sometimes when I have extra time, I pan fry carrots, cabbage and other vegetables, or cook some chicken and put it in my tortilla. You can fill quesadillas with whatever you can find around the house and no matter what they taste delicious (unless you burn them accidentally like me).

With these main dishes, I'm always looking for a quick side dish to go along, so I'll share my two favorites. This time of year, I eat carrots every day. Usually I eat them at least twice a day because we have so many. At lunch I have them cut up with a little dressing, but when I'm home, I boil them for a few minutes, and cover them in butter. I used to think that cooked carrots were gross, but I can't get enough of these boiled carrots. Boiling them is especially helpful when they get bitter. Another trick to taking away the bitterness is that once you peel them, leave them to soak in a bowl of water. My second quick side dish is just to make a quick salad or grab some broccoli and dip it in dressing.

That's all for today, but tonight we're eating our Saint Patrick's Day dinner (I know we're a day late). You can expect some recipes tomorrow night. Also, because my family hosts the big neighborhood easter party, expect recipes for easter food to be posted soon. Thanks for reading!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

How to make eating local convenient

One of the biggest misconceptions about cooking in general, at least in my opinion, is that it takes a lot of time. This is sometimes true, but even when you are trying to eat locally you can make a quick, easy dinner. With five people in my family on their own schedules, we are very busy. Rarely do we have time to cook for hours before eating, so we've found easier ways to get dinner on week nights. This post is going be tips on making eating local easy.

Instead of ordering pizza or take-out, plan your meals in advance so they take less time. Our weekends are usually spent doing chores and cooking. On Saturdays, we go to the farmer's market, the CSA, and the store to get ingredients for cooking on Sunday. If we have time Saturday night, we start some of the meals that take a lot of preparation, that way we can just cook on Sunday. On Sundays, the house smells like food by lunchtime. Sundays are spent making our Sunday dinner, as well as soups and stews for the week.

Foods that are re-heatable are the easiest to serve on busy nights. In my family we eat soup or stew at least twice a week. These meals are easily reheated, and if you put as many vegetables in them as we do, these can be one dish dinners. When everyone needs to eat at a different time, the first person who wants to eat heats up the soup on the stove, and everyone else can serve themselves the rest of the night.

Find easy, quick meals for nights when everyone only has only a few minutes to eat. A perfect example of a meal like this is tortilla espaƱola. All you need are potatoes, eggs, and cheese. Depending on what you like, you can also add peppers, onions, garlic, spinach, and basically anything else. This takes only about 30 minutes from start to finish, and you serve it right off the stove.

Save your leftovers! Unless your food will really taste gross after being popped in the microwave, save it. Leftovers are perfect for lunches, and at the end of the week, you can have a dinner where people just eat their favorite meal from the week.

I haven't posted in a coupe weeks because school vacation was a lot busier than I thought. As we approach April, the "end" of my project, I will probably post a couple times a week. I already have a huge list of recipes I want to use and things I want to talk about!