53: No wedding plans, but some kickin’ guacomole dip

During my pre-marriage period, I’m trying to build up a repetoire of go-to dishes I can make for my beloved husband when he comes home from a hard day at work. (Thus far my repertoire is very limited, but I’m trying to kick it up a notch, since I now have two very cute kitchen aprons, as well as a slew of kitchen supplies on their way in the form of wedding presents.)

On Sunday we went grocery shopping for the week, and I had my list of ingredients for four specific meals I wanted to try out. One was a chili recipe that called for a side of guacomole dip, that I planned to make for Thursday’s dinner. Well, Thursday came around, and we found ourselves making dinner around 9pm (thank goodness for time stamps on my pictures, or I’d never know when I made dinner!). A little late, obviously. So Chris ended up making the chili himself, while I concentrated on the guacomole dip.

The chili was dubna* (Ryan/Chris slang for ‘Decent… but not amazing.’ Yes, they know the u and b are backwards.) But the guacomole dip was heaven**.

*Not Chris’ fault: the recipe wasn’t anything spectacular, and he makes a mean white bean chicken chili to prove his skillz.
** Again, not my fault: I was just following directions, and Chris was the one who instructed me to squeeze the heck out of some limes to throw into it. And to throw in some garlic salt. He knows so much more about cooking than I do!

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Beef with Broccoli = Heaven

Tonight I decided we needed a break from wedding planning and schoolwork.

So for a glorious two hours, I did nothing online. Instead, I went to Vons, got some steak and broccoli, set to making this great recipe, and made Chris turn off his computer for an hour and watch Planet Earth with me while we ate.

It was so nice.

And that beef and broccoli recipe is a-freaking-mazing. Seriously, as soon as I poured the sauce into the pan with the steak it was like heaven broke out in the kitchen. The smell was so intensely mouth-watering, and I basically stood over the pan and picked out pieces while I waited for the rice to hurry up and cook. (Sshhh, don’t tell Chris, he thinks we got an equal amount.) And I had the foresight to make more than necessary and we both had a delish lunch to take to work with us today.

Beef and broccoli make Mondays much better, I feel.


We also still had some cupcakes leftover. Sheesh, I thought we’d never finish those things, but here’s the last plate full, which we polished off last night for dessert.

And now it’s back to school and wedding planning!

For Mrs. T.: the first recipe


For Christmas, Chris’ parents got me a special cookbook, so they can make sure I keep their son well fed. 😉

While we were up at their house over the weekend, Chris, Bethany (who also got one), and I pored over the recipes to choose our first few to try out. We chose three: a fish meal, a steak meal, and a pad thai (I’m not sure how to spell that?) meal. As soon as we got home, we made a list for all three dishes and headed to Vons to collect the necessary ingredients.

And on Monday we made our first feast: Ahi tuna skewers with vegetable rice. I don’t have the book with me to follow the steps here, but here’s the bundle of pictures from that night.

Oh, and a special drink to make making dinner more fun: the Kamikaze!















Soup of the Day

I decided on Tuesday that I wanted to finally try making chicken gnocchi. So I called up the OSF, ran my list of needed ingredients by him, and headed to Vons to pick up fresh veggies.

First step: Cook the chicken and garlic.

Second step: Shred the heck out of the carrot, celery, and spinach.


Third step: Get the boyfriend to chop the onion.

Step Four: Mix flour with chicken, then add milk and half and half.

Step Five: Throw in all the veggies and stir, stir, stir!



Step5: Finished! Ladle that soup into bowls and feed your hungry boyfriend!


I had hoped this would taste like Olive Garden’s chicken gnocchi, since the specific recipe I was using swore it was the same, but it really didn’t have the same feel to it. It was still good though, for my very first homemade soup. Chris loved it, and I’m pretty sure he wasn’t just kissing up because it was the first meal I’d made all on my own (with the exception of the onion, of course), because after his first bite his eyes got really wide and he said, “Babe! This is really good!” Another bite. “Babe! I can’t believe how good this is!” Third bite. “Babe. It’s really, really good.” Fourth bite. “Babe! This is way better than Olive Garden’s!” (Heresy!) So, since I’ve never heard him call me ‘babe’ four times in under twenty seconds, and he went back for a second bowl full, I think he did in fact like it. 🙂
Woo-hoo! I can make soup!