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Welcome to the garbage dump of my thoughts. haystephhay@gmail.com

Posts tagged what i've eaten

Sep 1

Previously on Week in Food…

Once upon a time I was a lot better about updating this, but here are the last couple of weeks of culinary victories, tragedies, and “eh that was fine”s.

Stovetop buffalo chicken shells & cheese: Previously reviewed here. If you prefer to have the buffalo sauce not fully mixed into the cheese sauce (which happens no matter what your intentions) I would drizzle it on top of the individual servings.

BBQ chicken salad: It seems stupid to even try to review a salad like this…if you like the ingredient list, you will like how this salad tastes. Good talk. 

One pot chili mac & cheese: Fine. The biggest draw is the lack of dirty dishes. I used more meat, more beans, more pasta, but kept the liquid the same and it was still soupier than I expect a chili to be. Even heavy-handedly measuring more seasoning, it was still sort of bland so I can’t imagine how not flavorful it’d be if you actually followed the spice measurements. 

Cheesy zucchini pizza: Redundant title, excellent pizza. It’s just so good. And quick! Do not underseason the ricotta. 

Better than takeout fried rice: Better than takeout? Yes. Better than hibachi fried rice? No, because mayo sauce + flat top = crispy tangy magic. I was happy with it overall, the chicken thighs gave it necessary moisture but it’s just hard to have a big enough pot and the patience to not overcrowd the pan to get the crispy rice texture. The happiest improv choice was chopping up a giant zucchini and throwing it in. Do that. Next time I’d also add bean sprouts. 

Coming up this week: garlic & black pepper pork burgers with sriracha slaw, book club snack dinner, spicy pork & kale soup


Aug 4

Week in Food: Past, Present, Future

Last week I made and ate:

Perfect fish tacos - The name sets it up for failure, and these were very good, but not as perfect to me as GP’s fish tacos. You can’t be perfect if your batter lacks beer. End of sentence. They were extremely crispy (I’m guessing thanks to the rice flour). I will be making that slaw for ever and ever though. That shit was the business.

One-pot french onion pasta - I wanted this to be more flavorful than it was. I used veal stock in place of chicken, and still pretty bland. Don’t worry I ate the entire thing, but it’s what I think I’d crave after a bad flu or something.

Budget Bytes’ stromboli - Still practically perfect in every way. Use HSE’s dough (found in recipe below) and mix the italian seasoning into the dough instead of sprinkling on top.

Sweet corn, zucchini, and fresh mozzarella pizza - Good GOD this was delicious. I thought so even having forgotten the garlic (I know, blinded by hunger, etc, etc). Two ears of corn was…a lot of corn. I love corn, but sliding a pizza with that many kernels from peel to oven was stressful and sort of catastrophic. Use her dough recipe, it’s the only one I ever do. Also, TJ’s makes a hell of a bottled balsamic glaze so I recommend you go find some stat.

This week, I will make and eat posole lasagna and sk’s sweet peas & shells alfredo.


Jul 29

Recipe ~ThOuGhTz~

I made these things last week:

Spicy chicken rigatoni - Honestly, this is nearly identical to the peasant pasta we eat constantly. I happened to have a jar of vodka sauce in the cupboard so I went with that instead of marinara and alfredo. 

Rainbow thai chicken salad - Fine. It is a bowl of crunchy vegetables coated in peanut butter dressing. It took a fair bit of water to loosen up the dressing, and the whole bowl tasted like peanut. 

Coming up: perfect fish tacos (we’ll see), one pot french onion pasta, & budget bytes’ stromboli.


Jul 20
I cooked exactly one dinner this past week, but I made it count. 
Run, don’t walk, to make/devour these bbq chicken burgers. They took basically no time to make and were exactly what you hope a burger will be. 
Is there a name for that gesture where you kiss your fingertips? That happened a lot while eating these. 
Recommended: grinding your own meat (not as gross/involved as you think! promise!), tucking the onions beneath smoked gouda then melting for neatness, and TJ’s Carolina Gold BBQ sauce. 

I cooked exactly one dinner this past week, but I made it count. 

Run, don’t walk, to make/devour these bbq chicken burgers. They took basically no time to make and were exactly what you hope a burger will be. 

Is there a name for that gesture where you kiss your fingertips? That happened a lot while eating these. 

Recommended: grinding your own meat (not as gross/involved as you think! promise!), tucking the onions beneath smoked gouda then melting for neatness, and TJ’s Carolina Gold BBQ sauce. 


Jul 13

Embarrassingly Untimely Recipe Review Post

Frozen key lime pie - Pump da brakes y’all, this was to DIE. I made it for a cookout and as a gracious guest left the uneaten portion with the hosts, but immediately regretted having done so. 

Crispy eggplant parmesan subs - Less it’s-a-me-Mario italian than expected, but certainly serviceable. The ball mixture comes together easily and yes, you do need to freeze them for a bit or I can see them falling apart in the fry oil. 

Le Diplomate burger hack - Would eat again. The most valuable takeaway is the burger sauce recipe. Whoever it was that suggested using a stick blender to make homemade mayo, bless you. It’s all I’m doing, using this recipe, forever. For what it’s worth, we used cheddar because neither of us can bring ourselves to buy American cheese. 


Jun 30

Things I Made and Ate and What I Thought Of Them

Salt & vinegar roasted potatoes - As an avid love of all things S&V, yes. A bit more involved than your everyday roasted potato because of the soak, but these were great especially doused in more malt vinegar after baking.

Homemade mayo - If you shudder at the thought of mayonnaise, give scratch mayo a legit try. The jar is a different animal. I used Mister Mustard (best) and some grated garlic in mine. Be prepared for a really sore whisking arm.

Crock pot baja chicken tacos - I have literally nothing to complain about with these. So easy and a big payoff. I used chicken thighs since I had them and I only used purple cabbage in the slaw since I didn’t feel like peeling a carrot. It was a long day.

Peasant pasta - If you’re new here maybe you don’t know, but this is our go-to, make-in-my-sleep, too-tired-must-eat-now dinner. It’s comforting and flavorful and done in 20 minutes. 


Jun 22

Food Follow Up: 6/16 Menu

Fancy mac - Can’t sing its praises enough. I love this recipe so much. As I’ve said many, many times before, you can shortcut the cheeses; I rarely ever use what’s called for instead going with regular swiss, parm/pecorino, and the chevre to save dolla dolla bills. You won’t miss $15 of gruyere and fontina. 

Caesar salad - A dream if you love lemon/acid. It’s really zingy and refreshing and amazing to eat when it’s uh-thousand degrees outside. 

Bbq chicken chopped salad - I thought I might die standing up from so much prepping and chopping and grilling, but when I sat down to eat it was all worth it. I left the corn raw because I weirdly like raw corn and it saved me a step. Grilled scallions, who knew??? So good. 

Cajun shrimp po boy salad - This is a weird salad. Fried shrimp and oven fries that happen to be on some lettuce, etc. I liked it, but it’s a weird concept. Strangest of all is that I thought the dressing was disgusting. All things I like enthusiastically, yet together? Gross. I don’t even know. I threw it out and used bottled ranch dressing instead. 


Jun 16

Food Follow Up: 6/9 Menu

Soft pretzel rolls - Soft pretzels is like my family. I did the regular ol’ baking soda bath because while I don’t doubt lye works better I didn’t feel like getting chemical burns on a Tuesday night. My reading comprehension was also poor and I used active dry yeast without seeing the note at the bottom and didn’t let it sit first, so my pretzels were likely flatter than they should have been, but still excellent. ESPECIALLY as a vehicle for char-grilled brats and chipotle mustard (it’s Guy Fieri/I’m sorry).

Kale caesar salad - A repeat for a reason. We have dino kale growing in the yard (“yard”…) so I skipped the massage and went with thin ribbons instead of tearing it into pieces.

Nancy’s chopped salad - Alternatively titled How I Learned My Husband Hates Radicchio. I liked this, though the amount of salt called for is actually insane. Dial that shit back. My personal preference next time would be more lettuce and/or less meat.


Apr 28

Food Follow Up: 4/21 Menu

Bacon & pea pizza - SO DELICIOUS. Possibly my new favorite pizza. Peas on every pizza from now on. Don’t skip the mint and lemon after it comes out the oven, I almost was too lazy but it would’ve been a grave mistake. 

Budget Bytes’ stromboli - Previously eaten and reviewed here. Still great. I prefer stirring the seasonings into the dough rather than sprinkling them on top. Definitely more stuffing than prescribed. This time I added chunks of mozzarella because more cheese is always better. 

Philly cheesesteak mac & cheese - Also good! Not the most flavorful, but it’s a good jumping off point for hot sauce/other mix ins. What I liked best is that it’s quick; it’s not a traditional bechamel so it’s faster than most macs. I’ll keep this in my back pocket for late nights and time crunches. 


Apr 22

Oh look a food post!

We’ve got some meals to eat this week:

I also promised you some reviews:

  • Queso blanco burgers - Is there a name for that gesture where you make the okay sign with your fingers and kiss them? It is super important not to heat the queso too quickly or it’ll get grainy. Be patient. Get a bag of chips for what doesn’t fit on the burgers, friends. 
  • Caramelized onion greek yogurt dip - I didn’t make this but I sure ate it. Would do again. 
  • Killer artichoke bread - A perfectly suitable dinner in my opinion. 

Apr 14

Too tired and too Monday to come up with a clever food post title.

Our one real meal this week will be queso blanco burgers, which I’ll tell ya right now are pretty great. I’ll have a slew of book club snack foods to tell you about though. 

Last week I made smitten kitchen’s dijon and cognac beef stew….dudes. Maybe not seasonally appropriate but AMAZING. My edits were to double the mushrooms and I ended up having to add some extra beef stock during the cook time since I was worried about evaporation about 60% through. Serve over egg noodles. Be happy.  


Apr 6

Things I have Eaten, Things I Will Eat

Cornmeal crusted chicken with jalapeno popper sauce - So, so excellent. Pound the chicken thin to help with tenderness and cooking evenly. I always serve it with waffles (crack black pepper into the batter). Micah made a genius breakfast sandwich out of the leftovers. 

Korean BBQ beef with broccoli - Basic, adaptable recipe. Super quick and flavorful. Do NOT cook everything as long as it says unless you love flaccid broccoli…I add mine at the very end and serve the whole thing over rice. 

Hearty black bean quesadillas - You’re simply the best, better than all the rest, better than anyone….

Massaged kale caesar - The other love of my life. I can’t wait until our kale plants grow so we can eat this 2x/week. 

Coming up:

  • Buffalo chicken quesadillas (no recipe, just leftover pulled chicken, buffalo sauce, red onion, monterey jack cheese, and blue cheese dressing)
  • Dijon and cognac beef stew 

Mar 9

Food Follow Up: 3/3 Menu

Fancy mac - Forever and ever amen.

Chicago deep dish pizza - Previously reviewed here. Still great, have not deviated from the prescribed toppings (yet). 

Spicy stewed beef with creamy cheddar grits - So it took me a while to come to a conclusion, but after some thought and some tweaks, I would recommend this dish. One, it makes A LOTTA FOOD. She warned me, I semi-listened, but shit guys. 4 cups of grits? Dry? Yeah, go ahead and halve that even if you do the full batch of meat. Bone to pick two, the liquid amount is not real life. That much stock will not miraculously cook down in three hours with a lid….I ended up taking the lid off for the last 30 minutes and cooking it until it was the desired thickness. Three, she’s not fucking around in the title. It is SPICY. I like spicy, just know that this is exactly that. The creamy grits do a great job tempering the heat. All of that said, this reheats like a god damned dream and I would make it again, just less of it. 


Mar 3

Food Follow Up: 2/24 Menu

Posole lasagna - Go make this. It’s a pain in the ass, but it’s enormous and worth it. Also time to plug grinding your own meat because it makes everything leaps and bounds better. 

Jalapeno popper dip - Uh, delicious. I chopped up a couple of fresh jalapenos since I don’t know what they meant by “canned” ones…maybe pickled? Try not to think about the fact that it’s a pound of cream cheese and a pound of mayo. 

Smitten kitchen party bread - Party bread is in the house tonighhhhhhht. There is no way to go wrong with scored bread doused in butter and stuffed with cheese. Michelle’s was phenomenal at book club, I made a kitchen sink version with horseradish cheddar and red pepper flakes as dinner last night. 


Feb 23

Food Follow Up: 2/17 Menu

Buffalo chicken tacos - So good and takes next to no time! Cut the chicken into smaller pieces than you think you need to - those suckers puff up while cooking. 

Lasagna soup - Kicking myself for letting this go so long between repeats. It’s the JAM, friends. All the delicious lasagna taste without the giant pain in the ass of making actual lasagna. Weeping at the thought of the cheese mound at the bottom of the bowl.


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