Finally cooking two nights in a row…

So I got a new job, and it means that I might actually be able to come home and cook more often! Go figure! I’m really excited, and I got an almost sneak peek this week, when I got to cook two nights in a row for the first time in months!

So night one. I got this seafood mix from an oriental store that a friend of mine introduced me to, hoping to make a dish reminiscent of the frutta di mare (fruit of the sea) that we had gotten in Italy. But of course, I can’t remember exactly what went into it, so I just threw some stuff together and called it good. Well the sauce rocked. The fish…well that left a little to be desired. This particular mixture had crab meat in it…I mean, imitation crab meat. Soft and gushy did not mix well with the other textures, and frankly was a little sickening. Unfortunately, the squid/octopus was chewy, but the clams were good! I think the same sauce with fresh seafood would be significantly much tastier.

The sauce though. The sauce was amazing. I used oil with garlic, tomato paste, tomato sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, oregano and hot sauce and let it simmer with the seafood. It was so so good! I think it would be good on really any kind of protein.

For my second night, I made a chicken kebab. Now this wasn’t just any chicken kebab…this had Korean BBQ sauce on it that I got at that same oriental market. I used some of the veggies from our Halloween get-together to make these that much more scrumptious, and added some very flavorful rice along with it. These kebabs had piece of bell pepper, then a pineapple chunk, and then a very sturdy carrot, and that pattern sandwich some marinated chicken tenders. Then the skewers were put in to the rotisserie and cooked for approximately 40 minutes or so. The tenders weren’t very thick, so they didn’t take long at all to cook. Let me just say, I added a little bit of chicken broth to the rice with the water, and that gave it such a good flavor! I should have cooked it just a tad bit longer though…It became like this sticky sushi rice almost. But I tend to like rice like that better. It just seems like it almost goes down smoother.

Can’t wait to keep up my cooking spree đŸ™‚

Halloween Goodies

This Halloween, we actually convinced more than one person to come over for some partying! So of course, I had to make food. There’s 7-layer dip on the left, bruschetta and toast with some parmesan, and all kinds of veggies on the right. And this was before the mac and cheese! Oh wait, did I forget to mention the scrumptious halloween bars in the middle?

It was awesome having people come over, even if it was only for a couple hours, and I got some pretty awesome reviews about the food spread. I just think that I’m my mother’s daughter, and made way too much food. But that’s okay, now there’s plenty of leftovers!

So this mac and cheese, I’ve mentioned it twice! I guess I have to explain it! I got it out of a cooking for groups book that belongs to the roomie, and then I changed it a little. It uses penne rigate noodles, sweet italian sausage, heavy cream, chicken stock, garlic, mushrooms and did I mention the cheese?! There is 2.5 cups of italian style shredded cheese in this dish, not to mention the half-cup of parmesan.

So basically, boil up the noodles and brown up the sausage. Then drain the sausage onto some paper towels and use the same pan (this is my favorite part! Less to wash!) to saute the mushrooms and garlic with some butter and olive oil. After about 5 minutes, pour in a cup of heavy cream and a cup of chicken broth, and stir it, bringing it to a low bubble. This is the part where I should have been cackling. Finally, add the 2 cups of italian cheese, and let it all melt together. After draining the pasta, pour this cheesy goodness and the sausage into it and then pour all that  into a casserole dish. Cover the casserole dish with the other cup of the two cheeses and bake until golden.

And let me just top all this off by saying that 80s horror movies like Scream are cheesy, and hilarious, but they make a great party movie because no one is actually scared. They’re just yelling at the stupid characters and telling them what they should be doing. It’s awesome.