Long overdue.

I am sorry to have disappeared for a while. By way of excuse, I offer the approximately 172 papers I have read in the past three weeks. Oh, and I made Thanksgiving dinner. And hosted my book club. All good stuff, but my writing time has been occupied by reading or cooking.

And I have been cooking. So this post will be a recap of some of the highlights of our family’s dinners. Here is some of what we have eaten:

    Spaghetti with tomatoes, mushrooms and rosemary, with a spaghetti frittata the next day with the leftovers.

The Boston Globe isn’t my favorite newspaper, but it is what is on my kitchen table in the morning. So I read it. OK, I skim it. The have a fairly interesting weekly food feature whereby they use the same ingredients to make two meals. The efficiency appeals to me, so I occasionally cut them out. After the effort of Thanksgiving I was ready for some easy eating, so I tried this set of spaghetti recipes. We know by now that I could eat spaghetti every day, and my kids agree. So Dinner 1 of spaghetti was a huge hit. Just a bit more interesting than a typical spaghetti with red sauce. The frittata was very easy to make, and was a big hit with everyone except Marc. He has a love-hate relationship with the egg, and only eats them in the morning. Kyra loves eggs, so this was a fun meal for her.

    Turkey Noodle Soup

It is definitely soup season in Massachusetts. I hate the winter and the cold, but I do love soup, so it is a small bright spot in a long dark season. Using my leftover turkey, I made a simple soup that was a huge hit. The bonus with soup is I always make a big pot so I still have a large container in the freezer, which is perfect for one of those late nights at basketball practice. I had no recipe for the soup, so here is roughly what I did: saute chopped onions, garlic, celery and carrots in pot. Add chopped turkey. Add chicken broth (yes, if I was good I would have used turkey broth, but really what is the difference? I threw in some poultry seasoning, and an Italian spice blend. I simmered it for a long while, then before we served it I threw in cavatappi (curly) pasta to cook. Garrett said it was his favorite soup I have even made. 🙂

    Caesar Salad with Shrimp

My son’s basketball season has begun. This year he is playing on two teams, which means I have the pleasure of spending a lot of time in a loud smelly gym. This also means I get home late with two starving children. Salads are great for quick dinners, because you can prepare them ahead and just assemble. The Caesar was simple to prepare, and I boiled shrimp in the morning and refrigerated. Kids usually love shrimp, which is surprising to me because I hated all seafood until I was in college and shrimp are super funny looking. Goes to show you that one shouldn’t judge based on your own food biases.

    Slow cooker Lamb Shank

This one is for my carnivore husband. It also happens to require four ingredients: lamb shank, garlic, red wine, and canned diced tomatoes. If highly motivated, brown the lamb shank first. Then combine all the ingredients in a slow cooker, and cook on low for 8 hours. I didn’t have eight hours because we had just come back from New York, so I cooked it on high for four hours. I made orzo and peas on the side. It was a delicious and hearty meal. I use it a lot for company because it appears much fancier than it is, and it frees you up to enjoy your company.

The semester ends this week, and I have final exams to give the following week. Food could be sparse around here for a while, but then I have a long month off, so I will try to get creative and write more.

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