in an effort to get rid of stuff and organize what was left, i started going through my huge stack of magazines a few weeks ago. i flipped through each page, ripping out recipes and nail polish colors and hairstyles and whatever else caught my attention. i now have a manila folder that's stuffed with tons of recipes ranging from "engagement chicken" to cookies for halloween and valentine's day and all sorts of other delectable morsels in between.
now, when i'm meal planning for the week, i pull out that folder and peruse through the torn pages, looking for new ideas to make for dinner. i'll pick out enough to last the week, make a grocery list, and then we're all set. then at the end of that week, i toss out the recipes that had FAIL written all over 'em and put the successes in the back of the folder. it's working out pretty well, and giving us a fun variety of entrees to try.
last night, the recipe on top of my week's stack was out of glamour magazine - "just add beer" chicken (i tried to find the recipe on the magazine's website, but it was damn near impossible, so the link is to another blogger who tried it out). i followed the instructions, browning my chicken drumsticks in melted butter, sauteed the veggies, and then busted out the sauce ingredients:
the teen was super amused when she got in the car and i told her that we were stopping at the liquor store on the way home so i could pick up a beer. i ended up scooping up other stuff too, like snacks and soda, because i felt really trashy just buying a beer and toting it out into the car (where my two daughters were waiting) in a brown paper bag. heh.
since the recipe suggested serving the chicken with some crusty bread, i decided to look through my folder of bookmarked recipes for easy dinner rolls. oh - on a completely different topic (and to answer someone's question), i'd decided against heading out to the grove last weekend to try out for that gordon ramsay show i mentioned a couple of weeks ago. i'd perused the 12-page application and once i got to the part where it asked if i'd be willing to leave my home and work commitments for five weeks, i was over it. no way in hell would i do that voluntarily.
i'd already settled on a recipe to bring as my entry to be judged: chocolate bacon cupcakes with caramel swiss meringue buttercream. come on - you had to expect something along those lines, right? i had even been to the grocery store and bought all of the ingredients i needed to whip up that intriguing creation, and so i found myself with an entire pint of heavy cream in the fridge with nothing to use it in.
well, i did use some of it earlier this week in my tortilla soup with chicken and lime - i tweaked it a little to give it more of a creamier texture by adding a cup of the cream and a few handfuls of shredded cheddar. i served it topped with more cheese, a dollop of sour cream, and some crispy tortilla strips, and it was quite a hit.
and that brings me back to my original train of thought - i'm pretty easily distracted: "ooh, something shiny!" - i'd had smitten kitchen's cream biscuits recipe saved for just the right time. and it seemed that that time was now.
with only six ingredients and a ridiculously easy prep, i was rolling out my dough within minutes.
they baked up beautifully, turning a lovely shade of golden brown in the oven and leaving the kitchen filled with the fabulous scent of freshly baked buttered bread.
as for the chicken, it came out tender and flavorful. the vinegar and beer mingled together quite nicely, and although i could still taste a hint of the vinegar, there was no distinct beer flavor. that's a good thing, since i can't stand the stuff.
since having dinner with some super cool chicks the other night (i still need to blog it, but time warner sucks and the internet at home is being fixed as i type, instead of yesterday), a couple of them have gone out of their way to compliment me on my hair. now you know how much i despised it when i first got it cut, and to be honest, it still hasn't really grown on me (pun intended). but i really appreciated their efforts to make me feel better about it, and decided maybe i better get at least one picture of it, just to remember it by.
now, i've been popping biotin like mad since my friend MommyBelle told me it helped her hair grow faster. and guess what - it's actually grown significantly in the six-ish weeks since the fateful cut, and i have an appointment next week to reshape my 'do. i'm feeling pretty optimistic that i can get a reasonable facsimile of my bob cut back, and with all of the layers and sideswept bangs i'm rocking these days, it'll be a return to the old, safe style - with a bit of a twist.
ah, i can't wait to be me again.