Category Archives: dinner


This was a request from Kirsten and is one of Alton Brown’s recipes. They’re not particularly difficult to make, but they are a bit time-consuming to fold them all up.

Potstickers at the Ready

The tricky part as well is getting the right amount of filling in each one. Too much, and it oozes out the side when you seal them up. I have a round plastic half-teaspoon measure that I used. From the picture, I got 46 potstickers made, with was the number of wontons on the package, I still had some filling left over, so I packaged that up for another purpose.

At this point, I guess you could just put the pans in the freezer, then bag them up if you want to make them another day. Instead, I just put a damp towel over them to keep them from drying out so I could use them later.

Now for the fun part:

Cooking them also takes a bit of time, as you can only do a handful at a time. I had the oven set as low as it could go and dumped the finished ones into a serving bowl in the oven to keep them warm.

Once they were done, I served them on noodles with stir-fry veggies.


Orzo Carbonara

I wanted to make a pasta dish, but I also wanted to do something new rather than just spaghetti and sauce. I’ve always seen orzo in the store and I finally remembered to look up a recipe so I could try it out. I settled on Orzo Carbonara.

Orzo Carbonara

Pretty easy to put together, plus it has bacon in it, so it’s got to be good! Even Thing Two, who normally won’t eat pasta unless it has red sauce liked it. Funny, because this is essentially pasta with some cheese which is pretty close to the macaroni and cheese that he wouldn’t touch. Oy.

Mini Burgers

It’s burger night! While the weather isn’t too bad for February, I still didn’t feel like firing up the grill, and rather than straight-up fry the burgers, I decided to steam them instead.

  • Take a pound and a half of ground beef and using a scale, portion it out and make a dozen or so 2 ounce patties.
  • Salt and pepper one side, then press in a dimple with your thumb to help keep them from puffing up into meatballs.
  • Slice up an onion. Fry it up in an electric skillet (set to 325°) with a couple tablespoons of oil and a pinch of salt until they start to brown a little.
  • Lay all the burgers on top of the onions, salted side down. Salt and pepper the other side, then put the lid on the skillet

    Steamed mini burgers

Leave the lid on to let the steam from the onions cook the meat. You don’t even have to flip them! When they’re done, remove them (along with a healthy helping of onions!) onto small buns or rolls. I used King’s Hawaiian sweet rolls.

Serve with whatever hamburger fixings you like!


So… A couple of weeks ago, I was laid off from the company that I spent over fifteen years with. Apart from job hunting, I’ve also found a few other things to occupy my time during the day.

I’ve gotten myself in the habit of getting to the gym every morning. Now, instead of battling the after-work workout crowd, or the early-evening classes, I’m just mingling with the senior walkers which is a lot less stressful. I’m trying to get my miles up so I can run the Wisconsin Half Marathon in May.

At home, besides doing the cleaning and housekeeping, I’ve also set a goal of trying to plan some decent meals and try to not ely so much on the prepared and frozen things that we usually have when both of us are home from work and don’t feel like putting together anything too complex before shuttling the kids around to their various after-school activities.

Since I already had this blog in place, I figured that I’d try to keep track of some of the things I make throughout the week and how well they went over with some of the picky eaters in the family.

Earlier this week, I made something that I’ve done before, and while not the healthiest thing in the world, is pretty tasty: Alton Brown’s Baked Macaroni and Cheese.

It’s pretty simple to put together and the ingredient list is straightforward. Everyone loved it except for Thing Two, who only likes his pasta with red sauce. It took a little prodding and a ton of drama, but he managed to choke it down.

Yesterday, Kirsten had her class and Thing Two had Cub Scouts, so I decided to go for quick and easy: Chicken Soft Tacos.

Nothing fancy here: I just cut chicken into small strips and cooked them in a packet of fajita mix per the instructions, but without the peppers and onions. I set it all up as a taco bar with tomatoes, lettuce, refried beans, sour cream, and cheese. For some reason, nobody wanted the Sriracha sauce but me…

Everyone was home early from school today, so I had to make lunch. Per a request from Thing One, I made cashew butter.

I made it per the recipe here, although with plain canola instead of the walnut oil, as it was too strong a flavor the last time I made it.

So that’s it. As I come up with my menus for the week, I’ll try to keep this updated. Since I have a bad habit of taking pictures of all my food anyway, this should be easy!