Wednesday, March 12, 2014

5 Favorites: Favorite cooking adventures of the month

Just sharing some of my favorite meals that I have cooked in the past month.
I'm so, so incredibly happy to have discovered (pretty recently...since I got married) that I have a passion for cooking! And sorry that I also have a passion for taking excessive pictures of the meals I cook...and then sharing them! Hey now, an artist would take pictures of his artwork, would he not? And cooking is art! Especially when you're not following recipes and are always making stuff up in your head and improvising....and especially when your husband praises the outcomes of your artistic culinary abilities. As I said...I am very excited to have found that I actually ENJOY cooking and do it pretty well....since just last year, when I still lived with my parents, I was pretty sure all I can cook is scrambled eggs and that "ain't nobody got time for cooking." My perspective changed a hundred and eighty degrees. I love, love, love cooking and (and baking) and it really relieves my stress and relaxes me. (Some of you are thinking: How can you possibly enjoy slaving away in the kitchen?!) I'm not making it up when I say cooking relieves my stress. Whenever I have a stressful day at school (i.e. exam), when I am on my way home, I often catch myself thinking about what I will cook when I get home and imagining new food combinations and making up new recipes in my head and figuring out whether something will work or not. 

Feel free to comment or ask me for any recipes. Even though I didn't follow a recipe for most of these meals, I will be glad to write one up and share!

#1 Meat & Potatoes Feast

Preparing some sliced loaded baked potatoes
(Probably the only meal in this post for which I actually used a recipe...although I only did so the first time I made those potatoes...not this time around)

Left: Sliced, loaded baked potatoes
Middle front: baked, breaded chicken breasts
Middle back: Fried, breaded pork chops
Right back: frying some onions
Right front: huge bone-in pork chop being fried

 I know, there is only two of us in the house right now (+ cat) do we eat all of this? Haha! We do not cook everyday. We usually try to cook enough for 2, if not 3, days.

#2 Spaghetti with Broccoli Cauliflower Parmesan Sauce a'la Agnes

I totally made up this recipe in my head one day while driving back home from school. I knew I had a taste for pasta. I knew I had some fresh broccoli and a whole cauliflower in the fridge. So I cooked this sauce. All from scratch, all natural, completely vegetarian. Nothing from a can or from a jar. Just fresh broccoli, cauliflower, garlic, butter, cream cheese, parmesan cheese, and salt. I'll be posting a recipe soon because it came out amazing! I was eating this pasta for like 3 days straight and could not get enough!

#3 Cooked half-a-turkey when mom was over. 

Also came out juicy, flavorful, and tasted amazing! My first time making turkey and mom was impressed. I kind of was too...I always thought cooking good turkey was tricky and a big deal...but turned out very doable for a beginner cook like me.

The side here is this polish carrot salad that my mom had always made and now I make because it is super healthy (lots of Vitamin A in carrots), delicious, and goes well with almost everything.

 #4 Stuffed chicken and broccoli salad

 I had a friend come over last Thursday that I have not seen since my wedding (almost 7 months ago) and promised that I will cook for her. So this is what I made. I was off work that day (my only 1 of 2 days off during spring break from school) and spent almost all day in the kitchen. It's because I also made her tomato soup, just forgot to take a picture.

Making my salad.
All fresh veggies. Basically broccoli, cauliflower, red onion, and then I added some cherry tomatoes. I also made the dressing from scratch using sour cream, mayo, vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper. My friend really complimented the salad and ate like 3 helpings of it. She especially complimented the dressing, which she said was very "refreshing." It was my first time making this salad and I did not know what they normally use for the dressing, just knew that it tasted sweet, so I guesstimated, and it came out tasting pretty much exactly how it tasted when I ate this salad at other places. It was yummy. Will be sharing recipe sometime in the near future also!

Waiting for my friend

The finished salad

Mashed potatoes, stuffed chicken (stuffed with butter and mozzarella cheese), and my awesome broccoli salad. 'Twas good!


I ran out of pictures of creative meals so here is one of the breakfast my husband made me the other Sunday. Some scrambled eggs with onion in them and fried baaacon on the side. And coffee, my lifeline, of course. 

Love, Aggie

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