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What's Cooking January 2022 Ending

I felt like I was entering a non-cooking phase, it happens, so I tried to make bigger batch things if I didn't want to cook. The freezer had some room.

Broccoli Cheddar Soup first up. Almost followed the recipe except I had some frozen broccoli I wanted to use. Costco organic frozen broccoli comes in a huge bag, but within the bag are 4 one pound packages. I had two left that had been in the freezer a while.

I thawed the broccoli, drained it some, and added it once I added the milk and broth to let it heat up. I pureed it all, it was delicious.

I made English Muffins because they seemed not too difficult and I had time. They weren't too difficult! I used my electric skillet and my stovetop griddle. Color came out better on the stove but they cooked through in the skillet. So once they got color, I shifted them to the skillet. Buy a thermometer! I use this one, this one and this one. I know. But I need some for personal cheffing, cooking classes and home.

The muffins were breakfast one day and the remainder were wrapped and sent to the freezer.

I made potato croquettes because I had potatoes leftover in the fridge, I love potatoes and I've made these several times. I've used lots of types of leftover mashed potatoes and all have worked. This time was red skinned mashed potatoes.

They reheat well too.If you don't devour all at one time.

We had a snow day! I planned buttermilk roasted chicken for dinner but thought pancakes might be nice for breakfast. I am more on the side of savory breakfasts, but husband likes pancakes and waffles and I haven't made either for a while.

I had a package of raspberries in the fridge so made raspberry pancakes, they were delicious! No syrup, just sprinkled with a touch of powdered sugar.

I did not dot the berries on once I flipped the pancakes. I made the batter and then folded the berries into the batter. I did hold the first batch in the oven and that worked well.

I am keeping the camera in the kitchen and remembering to use it! While the pancakes were cooking, I snapped some birds. Lots of activity at the feeders in the snow. I had to change the water in the feeders a couple times so they could drink.

The pansies and mint should recover from the snow day.

Beautiful branches.

Three of the four amaryllis were blooming at once! The leafy one already bloomed twice, it was the red and white one. They are gorgeous.

They have brought so much joy into the kitchen. I did not hit the cooking wall that I thought was coming. I changed my menu plan many times but kept cooking and not dreading cooking.

I like the idea of meatballs but much like meatloaf, I want them to taste more like meat, less like fillers. I've made this recipe more times than I have counted and love it. I do not have an instant pot so use my stovetop pressure cooker and it works great. So whatever you use, you should be fine.

They work well with just spaghetti and meatballs, meatball sandwiches, leftover meatballs on pizza. I get 10 so they cook in the time in the recipe. No picture, not perfect, just trying more.

Broccoli Beef was not even on my menu, but I saw the recipe, had all the ingredients, it was easy. And good. A little sweet for me, I'll cut the sugar next time and I'll add some chili sauce for spice. Oh, I used sirloin steak tips since I had them.

Another not on the plan but looked good and I had everything (leftover roasted chicken) was Lemony Chicken Soup with Orzo. Very good, I halved it and we liked it.

I think what helped me continue to cook even with looming "maybe I don't feel like cooking" was having leftovers. I didn't cook every night. And I had some easy items.

We had a visitor this week, a giant crow. When I hear them yelling in the trees, I try to go out and see what is concerning them. I've seen hawks and the owl this way. This guy was just on the porch on a feeder pole. Maybe he was thirsty since it's been cold, I make sure the baths are not frozen.

This weekend I think I'll make some bread, not on the plan but King Arthur sends emails and this looks good.

I'll be teaching after school cooking again this semester so need to come up with some menus for that. Also may be working Sunday, need to check on that.

Weather has been weird - cold, sun, cold, snow, cold, ice. Making sure I keep my birds happy so they visit.

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