Meatless Monday: Sautéed Asparagus and Snap Peas

I know it sounds embarrassingly easy but it has become one of Andrew’s favorite side dishes.  After a long love affair with green beans, Andrew is branching out into the vegetable world.  I wasn’t sure about the success of asparagus but if you try and find the really thin stalks of it, the flavor is delicate.

Ina Garten, a master in cooking, brings us this recipe.  It is simple, yet very satisfying.  I even let Chase jump in and stir this easy sauté.  With golf and soccer practices back to back on some days, this is an easy side dish to pull together after getting home at 6:45pm.

Sauteed Asparagus and Snap Peas


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Kid Friendly Meal: Thai Pork Lettuce Wraps

Do you want an easy, kid friendly meal?  Good.  Here it is.  I found the original recipe in Cook’s Illustrated, which painstakingly tests recipes to improve them.  The first time I made it I only had ground turkey, so I skipped a couple of the steps and augmented one of them to fit my tastes.  They are outstanding.  I served the lettuce wraps with coconut rice, black beans and steamed green beans.

Thai Pork Lettuce Wraps


1 pork tenderloin (about 1lb) trimmed of silver skin and fat, cut into 1″ chunks

2 1/2 Tbsp fish sauce

1 Tbsp white rice

1/4 cup low-sodium broth

2 medium shallots peeled and sliced into rings to use raw or minced to cook

3 Tbsp juice from two limes

2 tsp sugar

1/4 tsp red peper flakes (optional for kiddos)

3 Tbsp roughly chopped fresh mint leaves

3 Tbsp roughly chopped fresh cilantro

1 head Bibb lettuce, washed and dried, leaves separated and left whole


  1. Place pork chunks on a large plate in single layer.  Freeze meat until firming starting to harden around the edges but still pliable, 15-20 minutes.
  2. Place half of the meat in food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped, 5 to 6 1-second pulses. Transfer ground meat to a medium bowl and repeat with remaining chunks.  (Alternately, place 1 lb ground turkey into the bowl)  Stir in 1 Tbsp fish sauce into ground meat and marinate, refrigerated, 15 minutes.
  3. Heat rice in small skillet over medium heat; cook, stirring constantly, until deep golden brown, about 5 minutes.  Grind rice with spice grinder or mini food processor, or mortar and pestle until it resembles fine meal.  You’ll have about 1 Tbsp rice powder
  4. Bring broth to simmer in 12 inch skillet over medium-high heat.  Add pork and cook, stirring frequently until about half of pork is no longer pink, about 2 minutes.  Sprinkle 1 tsp rice powder over pork; continue to cook, stirring constantly, until remaining pork is no longer pink, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes longer.  Transfer pork to large bowl, let cool.  10 minutes.
  5. Add remaining 1 1/2 Tbsp fish sauce, remaining 2 tsp rice powder, shallots, lime juice, sugar, red pepper flakes, mint, and cilantro to pork; toss to combine. Serve with lettuce leaves.

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TBT: Greek Spinach and Feta Pie


It’s Spanakopita.  I’ve posted it before, but my husband’s darling niece, Indira, loves it IMG_1204and requested it a couple of days ago, so I enlisted her help to make this delicious recipe.  She buttered each layer of phyllo as I placed them on to the baking sheet.  It was well worth it.  I served it with lamb kefta, which is technically a Lebanese dish, (but who’s keeping score? Both are in the Mediterranean area!) and a fresh Arugula salad.

This morning, I made an over easy egg and put it on top of a warmed piece and felt like I was brunching, minus the Champs, pretty clothes, flowers in a vase and all of the kiddos running around.  Oh, and this one is a hit with the kiddos.  My husband’s other niece, Zyra, ate a piece this morning with such quickness that I questioned if I had even given it to her.

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Feed the Children: A Recipe, Not A Solicitation

Sally Struthers I am not.  But feeding the children is a daily task, or at least it should be.  I am always looking for family friendly recipes that will satisfy everyone but don’t make me feel like we’re eating Spaghetti’O’s.  The week before The Whiskey, Ryan said he wanted to carb load, so I planned on making spaghetti and meatballs.  I never got around to it so I made them the other night.  It was a hybrid of quite a few recipes but definitely my own.  I didn’t take pictures so I apologize.  The thing I love about this recipe is that you can mix and match meats and it has hidden vegetables.

Spaghetti and Meatballs


  • 1 lb ground lamb
  • 1lb ground pork
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp ground flax seeds
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan
  • 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • 5 oz frozen spinach, thawed and chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/8 cup chopped basil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large (32 oz) jar of your favorite marinara
  • 1 lb spaghetti


  1. Mix all ingredients, except for the sauce and pasta, in a bowl.  Use your hands.  You can always wash them before you go to the bathroom.
  2. Scoop out mixture to make meatballs about the size of a golf ball.  The recipe makes about 25 meatballs.
  3. Add EVOO to a pan and brown the meatballs on all sides over medium heat.  This takes about 20 minutes.
  4. Add sauce and simmer on low heat while you cook your pasta according to the package directions or until it is al dente.
  5. Drain pasta.  Serve meatballs and sauce over pasta.  Add crushed red pepper, parsley, and parmesan.



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