You probably know my friend, Jen. She’s an inspiration to me in many ways, from the way she’s deeply in touch with her inner self to what she cooks in the kitchen. We’re both Georgia Bulldogs, too, so that’s just an added bonus!
Her blog is a favorite of mine and as I was hopping on to write a post about recent eats, I saw she had one up as well and included food aspirations for the new year. I thought it was such a fun idea (because why not add some more goals to my proverbial plate ;)) But truly, it sounded fun so I decided to come up with some for myself.
2022 Food Aspirations
- Venture into Charlotte and try some of the restaurants I’ve been wanting to try for so long! The McNinch House, Mariposa, The Fig Tree, Customshop, and Good Food on Montford.
- Continue letting the girls bake all the things, but encourage and teach them to cook as well. Hailey has had success with lasagna and Kaitlyn has mastered scrambled eggs, but given their love for the kitchen, I’d like them to expand their skills in this category.
- Savor the cooking experience every now and then. I’m not in a season of life to leisurely enjoy putting together a meal on a Wednesday night, but when the situation arises, like Friday or Saturday nights depending on soccer and basketball schedules, I’d like to pick a fun new recipe, pour a glass of wine, and dive into the experience. When the girls were little, David and I would enjoy getting in the kitchen together, and I’d like to bring that back in some way, shape, or form.
- Expand the list of foods I’m comfortable with. Seafood is intimidating to me because I’m afraid I’ll screw it up and some of it is so expensive! But I’d like to get more comfortable with mussels, clams, scallops, and fish that aren’t salmon.
That was fun to think about what I’d like more of out of the kitchen. I genuinely love good food and want to continue to grow that knowledge base even during this activity juggling life stage. Ok, let’s switch gears to what we’ve been eating for dinner lately!
A winning meal in our house over the past few months has been pork. I use a bone-in roast, seasoning it well with spices and a squeeze of citrus, and slow cook it. The secret of elevating it to delicious status is to use a slotted spoon to transfer it from the soupy slow cooker to a foil-lined baking sheet and broil it for a few minutes to crisp it up. We did it in BBQ (or ketchup if you’re Kaitlyn) and serve it with roasted potatoes, kraut, and a simple slaw.
This lemon dill salmon is almost a weekly staple for us. It goes great with garlicky rice pilaf and any veggie. I always forget about bok choy but was reminded lately how much I love it. Not only for it’s crisp texture, but for how quickly it cooks up, too.
If you haven’t joined the burger bowl movement, make 2022 your year to do so. These bowls can accommodate all kinds of toppings. I always have the burger basics (crunchy lettuce like romaine, tomatoes, pickles, and avocado), and add on from there whatever is in the fridge, like sautéed mushrooms and onions, roasted veggies, and kraut.
This was a simple garlic roasted chicken thigh recipe that we all loved. I served it over a turmeric basmati rice that I’ll be repeating soon so I can share it. It was a cozy combo that the whole family liked, especially when I spooned the extra sauce from the chicken dish over it.
This wasn’t for dinner, but was a lunch worth sharing. I made a big batch of sweet potato and black bean chili on Sunday (minus the jalapenos) and the girls and I ate it for lunch 3 days in a row. It was a cold week and it felt like such a treat to have a “real” lunch instead of our usual snack plates. I put out some sour cream and corn chips and everybody devoured it.
We’ve had our panini press for over a decade and I’m just lately remembering to pull it out. I set up a topping buffet and everyone customizes their own. I made homemade sourdough using Clever Carrot’s method which was nice and simple. I topped mine with pesto, swiss, grilled chicken, tomato, red onion, and more swiss. Served with tomato soup for dipping!
I used this honey chili lime marinade for the steak tips and cooked them in a cast iron pan. The fajita bowl was complete with romaine, sautéed mushrooms, onions, and pepper, refried black beans, guac, salsa, sour cream, and way more chips than pictured.
I am always up for buffalo chicken, so this easy dinner hit the spot. Chicken tenders over a simple salad topped with buffalo and ranch. Crackers and hummus on the side.
I made these Greek wraps again. SO good. The components can all be separated for kids but my goodness they are stellar when all put together.
I’m clearly on a chicken thigh kick. This chicken thighs with oregano and lemon is one to try if you need a solid recipe to enjoy some thighs. The extra sauce created goes so well over rice and roasted green beans make an easy and tasty side.
This chicken soup is amazing. I make it with bone broth for extra healing properties. It’s not always easy finding a soup that Kaitlyn loves; as she usually likes separated components, but she gobbled this one up and asked for more broth.
Do you have any food aspirations for 2022?
Eat anything delicious and worth sharing lately?