Sardine Salad


  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 14 cup fresh parsley, minced
  • 14 cup plain Greek yogurt (whole milk preferred)
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 4.25 ounces sardines in olive oil, drained
  • 14 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 6 ounces capers, drained and rinsed
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Combine all ingredients in medium bowl, stirring to break sardines into pieces.  Season to taste and chill before serving.  


This recipe is from Run Fast Eat Slow.  I made it for my weekday lunches and haven’t actually tried it yet, but I’ll update the comments once I try it out.

Menu 1/8/2017

  1. slow cooker cassoulet
  2. double-trouble meat loaf
  3. leftovers
  4. grilled pork tenderloin, sweet and savory mustard sauce
  5. FFS
  6. FFS
  7. FFS 

I had initially picked a different cookbook but then I realized that I’m going to be out of town this weekend which means no cooking, and the nights I will be cooking are protein-only nights so 4 hour “braise forever” recipe aren’t well suited for the nights I’ll be cooking!  I changed from my initially selected cookbook to Michael Symon’s Carnivore: 120 Recipes for Meat Lovers.  I’d already started going through this cookbook and putting post-it tabs on the recipes that looked interesting.  Pretty sure I tabbed 80% of the recipes in the cow section.  Meal #1 is a holdover from last week as I didn’t take into account my lack of desire to cook after emptying the kitchen for painting.  Oops.

Bacon-Wrapped Stuffed Chicken


  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 14 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 6 ounces baby spinach
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 14 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cup soft goat cheese
  • 4-8 slices thick bacon


  1. Heat oven to 400*F.
  2. Butterfly chicken by slicing through the middle to open them into two halves, being careful not to cut all the way through the breast.  
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large skillet over medium heat.  Saute onion and salt.  Cook until soft, but not brown, about 5 minutes.  Add spinach, oregano, and pepper and cook until spinach is wilted.  Transfer to medium bowl, add goat cheese, and stir until incorporated.  
  4. Divide spinach mixture between chicken breasts and fold over to enclose filling.  Wrap each chicken breast with 1 or 2 strips of bacon and secure with toothpicks.  
  5. Heat remaining oil in skillet over medium-high heat.  Saute chicken breasts until lightly browned on each side, about 6 minutes.  
  6. Transfer chicken to oven safe disk and bake until thermometer reads 165*F, about 30 to 40 minutes.  


This recipe is from Run Fast. Eat Slow. We all thought it was tasty.  I actually used 5 chicken breasts because that’s how many were in the pack.  I think there probably would have been enough filling for 6 breasts.

Menu 1/1/2017

When creating my goals for 2017, I identified cooking (and blogging) to be an Area of Concern.  To address this, I came up with three goals to work toward:

  1. Pick one physical cookbook when meal planning each week and choose at least one recipe from that book for the week’s plan
  2. Blog all (recipes cooked from cookbooks
  3. Blog all weekly meal plans

So here goes nothing!  I’ll be including the cookbook in my weekly meal plan post and I’ll post the (recipes later on in the week, after I’ve cooked them.  I hope that these goals will help me get back in the habit of blogging both (recipes and meal plans.  I’m going to start with a pretty low bar and probably skip the picture thing.  If I do include pictures, they’ll be taken with my phone at the table without even an attempt at “prettiness.”  Sorry, not sorry.  I think pictures might require some investigation on my part because I believe that Picasa is no longer a viable photo host.  So.. we’ll see.  For now I just want to get back in the habit of putting words on the screen.  

  1. food out on way home from movies
  2. bacon-wrapped stuffed chicken (RFES), asparagus
  3. frozen thing in slow cooker
  4. FFS
  5. out due to kitchen painting
  6. [one-pan paprika chicken with potatoes and tomatoe](http://www.simply(
  7. slow-cooker cassoulet out due to kitchen painting

  8. (lunches) omega sardine salad (RFES)

I chose Run Fast. Eat Slow. as my first cookbook for 2017.  As with many “new” cookbooks, I found it rather lackluster.  Not a lot of the (recipes called to me, not a lot fit in with my way of eating, and it just didn’t feel super exciting.  Perhaps I’m just jaded?  I don’t know.  It’s a nice cookbook - lots of options for varying diets such as veg*n, gluten free, dairy free, etc.  Just not very thrilling for someone who doesn’t eat a lot of grains.  

My kitchen is getting painted (OMG YAY!!!) at the end of the week, so I planning on not being able to use it for that night.  I’ve also got my winter term class and a court appearance of unknown length due to an assault I witnessed a few months ago.  It should be an interesting week!  

I am dubious about my ability to find duck legs for meal #7, but my backup plan is to use bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs.  I’m also planning on using boneless, skinless chicken thighs in meal #6.  As often happens when I’m meal planning, I don’t notice trending ingredients - I had not intended for this to be such a chicken heavy week!

Movies in 2016

So close to 50… 

  1. The Big Short
  2. Concussion
  3. Joy
  4. The Hateful Eight
  5. Spotlight
  6. Carol
  7. The Revenant
  8. Anomalisa
  9. Hail, Caesar!
  10. Deadpool
  11. The Witch
  12. Eddie the Eagle
  13. 10 Cloverfield Lane
  14. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
  15. Zootopia (with Mom only)
  16. Midnight Special
  17. Captain America: Civil War
  18. Money Monster
  19. X-Men: Apocalypse
  20. Warcraft
  21. Now You See Me 2
  22. Finding Dory
  23. Independence Day: Resurgence
  24. Legend of Tarzan
  25. The Purge: Election Year
  26. The Secret Life of Pets
  27. Star Trek Beyond
  28. Lights Out
  29. Ghostbusters (2016) (with Mom only)
  30. Suicide Squad
  31. Morgan
  32. Don’t Breathe
  33. Snowden
  34. The Magnificent Seven
  35. The Girl on the Train
  36. The Accountant
  37. Jack Reacher: Never Look Back
  38. Arrival
  39. Doctor Strange
  40. Allied
  41. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
  42. Moana
  43. Nocturnal Animals
  44. Miss Sloane
  45. Loving
  46. Passengers
  47. Star Wars: Rogue One
  48. La La Land
  49. Manchester by the Sea

Books in 2016

I don’t think I made this post last year.  This was not a good year for reading between school and my dad’s death.  But, hey, 41 books is better than none!  

  1. Chimera by Mira Grant
  2. The Whalestoe Letters by Mark Z. Danielewski
  3. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
  4. What Is Psychology?: Foundations, Applications, and Integration by Ellen Pastorino
  5. Soul Particle by Carolyn Wyatt
  6. The House with a Clock in Its Walls by John Bellairs
  7. The Figure in the Shadows by John Bellairs
  8. The Letter, the Witch, and the Ring by John Bellairs
  9. The Ghost in the Mirror by John Bellairs
  10. The Vengeance of the Witch-Finder by John Bellairs
  11. The Doom of the Haunted Opera by John Bellairs
  12. Essentials of Health, Culture, and Diversity by Edberg
  13. Introduction to the Human Body by Gerald Tortora
  14. The Norton Introduction to Literature by Kelly Mays
  15. Foundations of Sport and Exercise Psychology by Robert Weinberg
  16. Fundamentals of Health and Fitness: The Foundation for Lifelong Wellness by Sherrise DeBaugh
  17. The Specter from the Magician’s Museum by John Bellairs
  18. The Beast Under the Wizard’s Bridge by John Bellairs
  19. The Tower at the Wnd of the World by Brad Strickland
  20. The Whistle, the Grave, and the Ghost by Brad Strickland
  21. The House Where Nobody Lived by Brad Strickland
  22. The Sign of the Sinister Sorcerer by Brad Strickland
  23. NOS4A2 by Joe Hill
  24. The Fireman by Joe Hill
  25. End of Watch by Stephen King
  26. Yuge!: 30 Years of Doonesbury on Trump by G.B. Trudeau
  27. Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande
  28. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling
  29. Exploring Lifespan Development by Laura Berk
  30. Reflect and Relate: An Introducion to Interpersonal Communication by Steven McCornack
  31. Vanished by Kat Richardson
  32. Hogwards: An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide by J.K. Rowling
  33. Short Stories from Hogwards of Power, Politices and Pesky Poltergeists by J.K. Rowling
  34. The Dispatcher by John Scalzi
  35. Short Stories from Hogwarts of Heroism, Hardship and Dangerous Hobbies by J.K. Rowling
  36. Charlie the Choo-Choo by Stephen King
  37. College Physics: A Strategeic Approach, Vol 1 by Randall Knight
  38. Introduction to Exercise Science by Terry Housh
  39. Heart and Brain: An Awkward Yeti Collection by Nick Seluk
  40. Heat and Brain: Gut Instincts: An Awkward Yeti Collection by Nick Seluk
  41. Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace
  42. Rise: A Newsflesh Collection by Mira Grant (didn’t quite finish, sigh)

Thanksgiving 2016

I am not prepared, but here’s the meal plan.

No Knead Bread (for eating)
High-Heat Roasted Turkey (No heritage turkey this year.) Apple-Raisin Bread Stuffing (single batch) Green Bean Casserole (13 batch) Cream Cheese and Chive Mashed Potatoes (single batch) Sweet Potato Casserole (single batch) Gravy Pumpkin Bread storebought vanilla ice cream
Molten Lava Cakes x1.5

Breakfast: Bundt Cake, eggs, grapefruit, homemade bacon
Lunch: sandwiches
Dinner: slow cooker 15-bean soup with sausage and spinach, marbled pumpkin cheesecake bars (biscoff for crust)

Breakfast: overnight eggs benedict casserole, grapefruit Lunch: sandwiches
Dinner: grilled burgers, fries, belgian-style dipping sauce

Breakfast: leftovers, eggs
Lunch: out or sandwiches
Dinner: Thanksgiving Leftovers!

New French Onion Soup


For the broth

  • As many beef bones as will fit in your pressure cooker
  • 14 cup apple cider vinegar

For the onions

  • As many sliced onions as will fit in your pressure cooker
  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • 12 teaspoon baking soda

For the soup

  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 12 cup all purpose flour
  • 12 cup red wine
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • Garlic croutons
  • 1 pound gruyere cheese, shredded


  1. To make broth: Load pressure cooker with beef bones.  Add cider vinegar and water to reach max fill line.  Cook under pressure for 2-4 hours and release naturally.  Remove bones and strain broth through fine mesh strainer or clean dish cloth.  Transfer to refrigerator and chill until fat can be easily removed.  Remove fat and discard or save for another use.  (You can use this fat in place of butter to make the onions.)  
  2. To make onions:  Melt butter (or beef fat) in pressure cooker over medium heat.  Load pressure cooker with onions and toss with baking soda.  Cook, stirring, until onions have softened slightly and started to release liquid, about 3 minutes.  Seal and cook under pressure for 20 minutes.  Quick release pressure then remove lid.  
  3. Continue cooking with lid off, stirring constantly, until liquid has completely reduced and onions are deep brown, about 5 minutes.  Add tomato paste and sauté until paste begins to darken.  Add flour and stir until well coated.  
  4. Add wine and bring to simmer, scraping up any browned bits.  Cook until alcohol is mostly evaporated, about 3 minutes.  Add stock, plus enough water to reach 2 quarts, thyme, and bay leaf.  Raise heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer.  Lower heat and simmer 10 minutes.  
  5. Add fish sauce, cider vinegar, and season with salt and pepper.  Discard thyme and bay leaves.  
  6. Serve soup topped with croutons and cheese.   


This recipe is a mash-up of a number of other recipes and methods.  I think this might be The One.

Loaded Naan Nachos with Ground Lamb and Crispy Chickpeas


  • 34 packed cup fresh cilantro, minced
  • 1 packed cup fresh mint leaves
  • 2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 12 teaspoons cumin, ground
  • 2 tablespoons juice (about 2 limes)
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 garlic, or regular, naan breads
  • Neutral oil such as peanut, canola, or vegetable
  • 1 (15 ounces) can chickpeas, drained, rinsed, and dried
  • 1 23 teaspoons garam masala
  • 13 teaspoon plus 12 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seed, groun
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 12 cup greek yogurt


  1. Heat oven to 400*F.  Combine 12 cup cilantro, 1 cup mint, 1 jalapeno pepper, 12 teaspoon cumin, 12 of the chopped onion, and 1 tablespoon lime juice in food processor and process until smooth.  Thin with water until thick but pourable.  Season with salt to taste and set aside.  
  2. Cut the naan into triangular pieces and place on baking sheet.  Brush both sides with oil, sprinkle with salt, and bake until golden, about 8 minutes, flipping once halfway through.  Remove naan chips from oven.  
  3. Toss chickpeas with 23 teaspoon garam masala, 13 teaspoon paprika, 13 teaspoon salt, and 2 tablespoons oil.  Spread chickpeas on baking sheet and bake until crispy, about 35 minutes, tossing once.  
  4. In a small bowl, combine the remaining jalapeno, chopped onion, 2 tablespoons of ginger, and garlic,   
  5. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in skillet over medium-high heat.  Add half of jalapeno mixture and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Add ground lamb, 1 teaspoon garam masala, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 teaspoon ground coriander, remaining 12 teaspoon paprika, and salt and pepper to taste.  Cook, stirring, until cooked through.  
  6. Mix remaining jalapeno mixture with remaining 14 cup cilantro, remaining tablespoon lime juice, and 1 tablespoon rice vinegar.  
  7. Layer the naan chips with ground lamb, roasted chickpeas, cilantro-mint sauce, jalapeno salsa, and greek yogurt.  


This recipe is from Serious Eats and, even though I made it quite some time ago, I still remember that it was delicious.  The original recipe called for mango, which I omitted.  I sort of wished that I’d added cucumber or corn, but then they’d be similar to other things that I make, so probably best this way.  We all enjoyed this.

Leek, Ham, and Cheese Egg Bake


  • 1 tablespoon butter, plus extra for greasing baking dish
  • 6 large leeks, cut into thin half-moons and washed thoroughly
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 12 eggs
  • 3 13 milk, preferably whole
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 34 pound grated cheese such as gruyere and parmesan
  • 10 ounces cooked ham, diced fine


  1. Heat oven to 350*F and butter 9 by 12-inch baking dish.  
  2. Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat.  Once hot, add leeks and season with 1 teaspoon kosher salt and pepper.  Saute, stirring, until tender and starting to brown, 10-15 minutes.  
  3. Beat eggs with 1 teaspoon kosher salt and pepper.  Whisk in milk.  
  4. In baking dish, layer 13 grated cheese, 12 leeks, 12 ham, 13 cheese, remaining leeks, and remaining ham.  Pour egg mixture into baking dish then top with remaining cheese.  
  5. Bake until just set in the middle, about 55-65 minutes.  Let cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.  


This one is from Smitten Kitchen and, sadly I don’t remember it at all.  It’s similar to a frittata but with more milk than my usual ratio.