Sunday, January 30, 2011

Menu for the week of January 31st

Holy smokes... I can't believe it's almost February. This year is already flying by. So this week is kind of an abbreviated cooking week since I will be heading to my Mom's on Wednesday (and I don't really trust Chris meddling in the kitchen) but I am still going to post what I am cooking.

Monday- New York strip steaks with blue cheese
Asparagus and baby potatoes

Ok, here is my secret on steaks... stove top (or grill) AND oven. The best way to do it is season your meat (I love McCormick's Montreal Steak Seasoning). Get your grill or a grill pan screaming hot. Sear the meat for 1-2 minutes per side. Then place the meat in a baking dish and cook accordingly:
(Cook time based on a one inch thick steak in a 400 degree oven)
Rare: 5 minutes
Medium: 6-7 minutes
Well done: 8-9 minutes
I know that blue cheese is an acquired taste and truly I only like it in certain application but, blue cheese and beef is amazing. I will drop a little bit on top of each steak a couple minutes before they are done and put them back in the oven.

For the asparagus, I like to oven roast it. Trim and wash the asparagus. Spread out on a baking sheet spray with a little bit of olive oil cooking spray. Top with 2-3 cloves of minced garlic and some sea salt to taste, toss to coat. Roast in the oven for about 5 minutes (keep an eye on it, sometimes it cooks much faster).

For the potatoes I am going to use an Erin adaption of and Eric Ripert recipe. I am going to use the little potatoes that for the life of me I cannot think of what they are called. They are about an inch in diameter, average. Anywho... In a heavy bottom pan (I like to use my new cast iron dutch oven), add the potatoes in one even layer. Add enough chicken broth* to come about 3/4 of the way up the potatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Braise the potatoes in the broth, uncovered for about 15-20 minutes or until potatoes soften. Most of the liquid will be absorbed or evaporate, this is ok. When potatoes are tender, add Kraft Reduced Fat Parmesan cheese. (This is where you have to use your best judgement for calculating points) I use enough cheese to make sure all the potatoes get a little. If I had to estimate I would say its about a tablespoon total. Stir potatoes and serve warm.

As far as points for this meal, I cannot give a realistic estimate. There are too many variable (ex: size of steak, how many potatoes you want to eat, etc.). I think this is an instance of count what you can and estimate as best as possible with the rest of the items. This is why I could never work for Weight Watchers. :)

*For the chicken broth, I use Swanson 99% Fat Free Reduced Sodium Chicken Broth

Tuesday- Chicken Green Curry

I am so excited about this!! Chris and I recently discovered Thai as a cuisine we enjoy and I love Green Curry. So I found this WW recipe and I am going to try it. I am adding a few vegetables that they did not use but I will list those out with the review on Tuesday night. Here is the link:

Wednesday- Mexican Style Brown Rice Casserole

This is a recipe I have made a few times now. I love it and even my "meat and taters" husband enjoys this vegetarian casserole. I do make a couple substitutions though. Instead of the refried beans, I use one can of drained and rinse black beans. Instead of frozen spinach, I tear up a few handfuls of fresh spinach. It just gives it a little better consistency. Also... I probably add extra cumin as it is a favorite spice of mine. :) Also, I am going to make this ahead of time and leave it for hubby to finish baking. This works great... I feel pretty confident it would also freeze well prepared to be baked later.

Again, sorry for the abbreviated week but I hope you enjoy none the less and I will update on Tuesday to let you all know how the Green Curry was!

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