Wednesday, April 21, 2010

What's For Dinner?

A few years ago I took a series of cooking classes at The Kitchen Window in Uptown. I already knew how to cook but at that time most of my cooking was actually preparing something that came out of a box.

I now know that not really cooking. I also now know that it is impossible to completely understand and control how much sodium you are taking in if all you do is cook from a box.

While in that class I decided I would try everything we prepared. The classes were not cheap but we got dinner at the end. I was my goal to take at least two bites of everything we prepared.

In the end I honed my knife skills, learned how to poach, fry, flambé, and braise, how to make my own mayonnaise and balsamic vinaigrette, kitchen safety, and that I really do like Salmon and Asparagus and Crème Brule.

I also validated my hatred for beets. And raw tomatoes. And raw onion.

All of this was worth the class. But most importantly I realized that I really do enjoy cooking.

I still have a million excuses why I don't want to cook on a nightly basis. The kitchen is too messy, I didn't thaw any meat, I don't want to clean up after.

These excuses caused us to eat out way too much.

At the beginning of 2010 I evaluated our eating habits. I was horrified to realize that I was spending $100 a week at the grocery store and another $60 to $80 a week on dining out.

That was enough for me to want to change my ways.

An added benefit was how quickly I dropped 10 pounds by simply eating at home every night. And the night we picked up Burger King only to feel really gross after eating it sealed the deal.
My goal is to eat at home 6 nights a week and to pack lunches every day. So far we are doing really well and I lost another 5 pounds!

On this blog, I am going to post what we had for dinner nightly. I hope this will help some of you out there get some new ideas to incorporate into your rotation. I get most of my dinner ideas from The Pioneer Woman and from a number of cook books I have in my kitchen. I will post a link or list the recipe.
It would be great if you left a comment to let me know if you tried the recipe and what you thought of it. Also, if you have something you think we should try, let me know!
I will review each meal and let you know which parts the kids liked or didn't, which parts my Picky Brother In Law liked or didn't, and which parts the other three adults liked or didn't.
I hope this becomes a segment you enjoy!

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