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I made this today for a quick lunch. It was refreshing on this muggy day. It would also make for a lovely light supper. I would love to try this salad with wheat berries or something similar in place of the pasta but I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have been able to get other family members to eat it so pasta it was! Switch up the green veggies if you don’t happen to have what I used.    Sesame and Spring Veggie Chicken Pasta Salad Adapted from Simply in Season 1 1/2 cups (or a bit more) chicken stock 1 t soy sauce 1 t toasted sesame oil  3/4 cup small pasta, uncooked (orzo, ABCs, etc) 1 cup chopped asaparagus 1/2 cup frozen peas 1/2 cup frozen red pepper  1 cup cooked diced chicken 1 cup cooked white beans 3 T lemon juice 2 T soy sauce 1 T olive oil 1 T chopped chives 1/4 t fresh ground black pepper 1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds 1 T toasted sesame seeds Bring stock, sesame oil, and 1 t soy sauce to a boil. Add pasta and cook until almost all of liquid is absorbed. Add asparagus and cook a few more minutes or until pasta is al dente and asaparagus is crisp tender. Add more stock if it’s getting too dry.  Put peas and peppers into a bowl. Dump the hot pasta over top and stir. Add chicken and beans.   Stir together the lemon juice, oil, soy sauce, chives, and black pepper. Pour over the salad and stir. Chill or serve room temperature, topping with almonds and sesame seeds just prior to serving.  Serves 3-4

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure! 

Recently my sis-in-law gave me a grocery bag full of smoked venison sausage that her family was not fond of. She said I could feed it to the dog if we didn’t like it. 

I don’t think the dog will be getting any! 

 
I thought stir-fry sounded strange for a smoked sausage but it was delicious. I had been warned the sausage was dry so I chose a saucy application for it. And we didn’t notice any dryness at all!  

Smoked Sausage Stir-Fry

Adapted from Fix It and Forget It Potluck Heaven

1 pound smoked sausage, sliced 1/4″ thick

1/2 cup sliced onions

2 cups grated carrots

1 can pineapple chunks, drained (reserve juice)

2 T soy sauce

1/2 t powdered ginger 

1 T cornstarch 

1/4 cup water

Fat of choice (I used roasted peanut oil and chicken fat)

Whisk together the pineapple juice, soy sauce, ginger, cornstarch, and water. Set aside. 

Heat a tablespoon or so of fat in a skillet. Stir fry the carrot and onion until crisp tender. Remove from pan. Add the sausage (and more fat if needed) to the skillet and fry until lightly browned. Add the veggies back in along with the pineapple. Pour the sauce over all and heat until bubbly and thick. 

Serve over hot cooked rice. 

Serves: 4

This one couldn’t be easier. And we all liked it. That’s rare these days!   

I love the fact that the meat doesn’t need browned before going in the casserole. It makes this so easy to assemble. And horray for less dishes!

The rice gets nice and soft on the bottom of the dish and the corn adds a certain sweetness. The bacon has crisp edges and chewy centers and its flavor (aka fat) drips down and keep the venison from becoming dry. It’s really just a good, classic casserole. 

 
Seven Layer Casserole

Adapted from Fix-It and Enjoy-It Potluck Heaven 

1/2 cup uncooked white rice

2 cups frozen corn, thawed

Salt/pepper

1 cup tomato sauce

1/2 cup water 

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped bell pepper

1 pound ground venison/beef

4 slices bacon, quartered 

In a 2 quart baking dish, layer the rice and corn. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Mix the tomatoe sauce and water. Pour half of it over the corn/rice. Layer in the onion and peppers. Then crumble the raw meat over too. Pour the rest of the tomato sauce/water over top and layer the bacon over all. Cover and bake at 375 for an hour. Remove the lid and bake another 15 minutes. Serve. 

Serves: 4-6

Savory Breakfast Quinoa

I can’t stop eating spinach. This morning I took some leftover quinoa and fried it up with some onions and the green stuff. Simple and satisfying!  

Savory Breakfast Quinoa

Bacon fat/butter

1/2 cup cooked quinoa

1/4 of a small onion, sliced

2 large handfuls fresh spinach, chopped

Curry powder 

Salt/pepper

Melt the fat over medium high heat. Add the onion and quinoa and let sit until golden brown on the bottom. Stir and let sit again. Sprinkle with curry, plenty of salt, and pepper. Throw in the spinach and cook just until wilted. Serve warm. Bacon is optional (but not really). 

Serves: 1

Watercress and Spinach 

I had watercress for the first time last spring. My grandma served it to me on butter bread. A simple way to use some of the first spring greens! 

I also have spinach early this year thanks to my cold frame. We’ve been eating it in large salads (or sautéed with butter and salt) because we are almost out of green veggies in the freezer. Only two meals of beans left!

(But the asparagus is up! We shall soon feast on garden goodies every day.)

My current favorite spinach salad has toasted almonds, cheddar cheese, and raisins on top. I use this dressing or just a balsamic vinegar and walnut oil. 

So there you go. A simple spring lunch.   

Fried Rice

  

I like to make fried rice as a quick lunch or super easy supper. We all love it.   

Fried Rice

4 T butter

1 small onion, diced

2 carrots, diced

1 cup frozen peas

1 t toasted sesame oil 

4 cups leftover rice 

2 eggs, beaten

Soy sauce

Melt a tablespoon of butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the onion and carrots. Sauté until crisp tender, 2-3 minutes. Add the peas and cook another minute. Remove veggies from pan and set aside but keep warm. Add 2 T butter and the sesame oil to the pan. Heat and then add the rice. Spread it out and let the rice go so it gets brown on the bottom. That’s flavor! Stir and let brown again. It takes a few minutes. Once your rice is crisp and golden, push it to the side and throw the last tablespoon of butter into the empty side of be pan. Add the eggs and cook and stir until nearly set. Stir eggs and veggies into rice, season with soy sauce to taste, and serve immediately. 

Serves: 2 adults and 3 children for a nice lunch

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Better late than never! WordPress was not allowing me to post. But here I am.

Benny’s birthday is on Sunday. Three! We shall celebrate with the family’s very favorite chicken dish and a fishy birthday cake.

Monday: Sausage, Baked Potatoes, Green Beans, Applesauce

Tuesday: Southwestern Potatoes and Eggs, Sugar Peas

Wednesday: Beef Veggie Soup, Pumpkin Muffins

Thursday: Pasta with Ham and Peas, Broccoli

Friday: Super Stuffed Tortillas, French Fries

Saturday: Quinoa Enchilada Casserole, Sugar Peas

Sunday: Honey Baked Chicken, Rice, Green Beans, Chow Chow, Applesauce, Bread

Desserts: Birthday Cake, Basic Fruit Gelatin

Odds and Ends: Everyday Bread, Sourdough Bread, Tortillas

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