oh, how i love to cook. it's a labor of love and creativity with delicious rewards! every Thursday, i'll link up to some of our very favorite, tried-and-true recipes. thank goodness Nick and i have equally adventurous palates, with a penchant for bacon and buffalo chicken! i'm constantly on the lookout for 30-minute weeknight meals that make enough for leftover lunches, as well as more elaborate weekend feasts that make the whole house smell like a Williams & Sonoma store.
while i do consider myself decently handy in the kitchen, i am not a food photographer by any means, so these photos are linked directly back to the blogs from whence they came! i'm also linking up to Taste and Tell's weekly round up!
here are some of our favourites:
grilled chicken ranch cajun pasta
from plain chicken
image credit from Plain Chicken
this recipe calls for marinating the chicken at least two hours. i often make the marinade in the morning and let it soak into the chicken in the refrigerator all day. i also cook the chicken on a grill pan over medium for about 10 minutes per side, or until juices run clear. the flavors are unbelievable!
bacon wrapped meatloaf with brown sugar ketchup glaze
originally from Pam Anderson, recipe from everyday gourmet
image credit from everyday gourmet
this could well be called "catch-a-husband-meatloaf". it only requires a little prep time, although like most meatloaves it does need to bake for at least one hour, so if i attempt this culinary delight on a tuesday night we may not end up eating until 8 pm. it is totally worth the wait, and the leftovers are even better.
southwest chicken salad
from taste of home
image credit from taste of home
this summery salad is popping with bright colors and zesty flavors! i have to confess that we usually just eat it out of a bowl - it's that good. i always double the cumin, salt, and chili powder, and sometimes add another tablespoon of lime juice. i also substitute fresh red peppers for the roasted sweet red pepper.
beer and brown sugar kielbasa & sauerkraut
from brown eyed baker
image credit from brown eyed baker
it truly doesn't get better than this. you can use any type of kielbasa, but our absolute favorite comes from jo-mar provisions in the strip. their sausages (and bacon, and beef, and exotic meats of all kinds!) are fantastic. this is another recipe with very little morning prep required. after letting it simmer all day in its brown sugar and beer broth, you nestle each brat into a crusty bun slathered in spicy brown mustard. and you can practically hear the oompah band with every bite. (also, i'll gladly eat sauerkraut right out of the jar, but if we're grilling the kielbasa for a crowd, i still let the sauerkraut simmer in the beer and brown sugar for several hours. it softens that fermented cabbage flavor that some people sadly don't enjoy as much as i do, and, well, it's just plain delicious.)
and there you have it! believe me, there are plenty more favorites in our recipe rotation, with more added weekly given my slight addiction to cooking blogs. see you next week!