A most excellent weekend - on Saturday I fit in a 27 mile bike ride with a friend, then sat and read on the porch the rest of the afternoon. Sunday we buzzed down to the Cities for Miss Ellie's 1st Birthday! The Sister threw a lady-bug themed party that was just adorable. Ladybug punch, ladybug poop (apples and raisins), kiddo's had made various finger paint ladybug decorations, black and red twizzlers, tomatoes and blueberries, very cute indeed.
Summer Vegetable Pasta Salad (Pinterest via Budget Bytes Blog) vegetarian, gluten free option
The recipe below is a loose interpretation of the actual recipe linked to above. My intent was to make the recipe as written, but then completely forgot to pick up the veggies I needed. Doh!
Improvise, overcome, adapt! I used what I had on hand in the fridge and it worked just fine. Better than that! It was splendid! The vinaigrette remains the same, salad ingredients were altered. I decided to grill the veggies for depth of flavor. I let everything cool before tossing pasta, veggies and dressing together. This made enough for about 6 lunches.
So, it just goes to illustrate that a recipe is truly just a guide! Recommended.
|photo from Budget Bytes Blog|
- 8 oz. rotini pasta (regular or gluten free)
- 1 medium zucchini, halved and cut into ½” chunks
- ½ medium red onion, sliced vertically
- 1 red pepper, cut into ½” chunks
- 1/2 cup pitted and halved kalmata olives
- Leftover goose (chicken, turkey, duck, etc) OPTIONAL
- ½ bunch parsley, stems removed and finely chopped
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ⅓ cup red wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp dijon mustard
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- ¾ tsp salt
- to taste fresh cracked black pepper
- Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and boil for 5-7 minutes or until tender. Drain in a colander.
- While you’re waiting for the pasta water to boil and the pasta to cook, prepare the vegetables). My notes: Vegetables can be grilled for more flavor or left raw for a brighter taste.
- While the pasta is cooling, prepare the vinaigrette. In a small bowl whisk together the vegetable oil, olive oil, red wine vinegar, dijon mustard, oregano, minced garlic, salt, and pepper.
- Combine the cooked pasta, chopped vegetables, and vinaigrette. Stir until everything is well mixed and coated with vinaigrette. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to eat.
Crockpot Buffalo Chicken (Pineterst via Wannabite Blog)
Just because it's summer doesn't mean my slow cookers are on hiatus! I got this recipe from the SIL when we visited the Brother and fam in April. If you are a hot-head, this is a recipe for you. And easy - incredibly easy! A total plop recipe - just plop, mix a bit, and cook.
I did cut back on the hot sauce by half a jar simply because that's all I had on hand. I realized as I type this that I forgot the garlic. Oh well. This can be served over Hawaiian rolls or rice, with some Ranch or Blue Cheese dressing or just plain blue cheese crumbles. I went with Hawaiian rolls and blue cheese crumbles. And this is one dish that get's better as it sits!
|photo from wannabite blog|
- 2 lbs raw boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 12 oz bottle of Buffalo wing sauce (I used a half bottle of Louisiana Hot Sauce)
- 1 oz packet of dry Ranch mix (I used Hidden Valley)
- 2 tbsp light butter
2 cloves garlic minced(I forgot...)
- Place the chicken breasts in your slow cooker.
- Pour the bottle of wing sauce over the top of the chicken.
- Sprinkle the packet of ranch mix over the top of the wing sauce.
- Add your minced garlic to the slow cooker, making sure to cover it with sauce.
- Place the lid on your slow cooker.
- Cook on low for 4-6 hours or until meat shreds easily.
- Remove meat and shred it using two forks.
- Return shredded meat to the sauce and add the butter.
- Stir to combine.
- Continue to cook on low for another hour so the meat can soak up the sauce.