Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Home-made Valentine's Day meals

Dan surprised both with V-Day breakfast and dinner!  We had a 1.5 hour delay b/c of weather (following a full day off) so Dan made me some bear and heart pancakes.  Then for dinner he made me my fav - RIBBIES!  Plus mashed sweet potatoes, sweet potato fries (forgot to take pic) and garlic green beans with slivered almonds.  Oh and he made chocolate-covered strawberries.  I'm a lucky panda :)

Bear and heart-shaped pancakes

Delicious ribs, green beans and mashed sweet potatoes

Chocolate-covered strawberries

Home-made chicken teriyaki, veggie str-fry and kimchi fried rice

This meal was really a smorgasbord of Asian food.  The kimchi fried rice was from the night before (Dan's first attempt.  Turned out pretty good) and then I supplemented with gluten-free home-made chicken teriyaki and veggie stir-fry with soy sauce and chili paste.  It was a lot of rice overall.  Didn't realize how much fried rice we had left, but I was really pleased with the teriyaki but I didn't even marinate for very long but it turned out really well and was so easy and quick to do.  The most time-consuming part was defrosting the chicken.  I also felt pretty pleased with myself for making the sauce myself, although honestly it could not have been easier.

(Bottom L to R) Kimchi pork fried rice, white rice, veggies and teriyaki chicken

Dinner at Dinosaur BBQ in Newark, NJ

Dan and I were craving some meat and what better and closer place the Dino.  Literally a two minute train ride away, which is kind of dangerous but I decided we can't go there more than once a month ha.  I am sooo happy that they have Dino Poutine on their full-time menu now.  I could've probably just eaten that and been happy, maybe with couple of wings.  But of course after eating that I got my own two-meat platter hahaha.  What a fattie.

Dino poutine with flash.  Fries, pulled pork, gravy and pimiento cheese

This was so freaking good.  Even without real cheese curds

My two-meat platter.  Korean short ribs and regular pork ribs with BBQ fried rice, corn bread, and veggie of the day - kale and black eyed peas.  The short ribs were pretty tasty but a little salty.  Sides were fab.

Dan's two-meat platter with chicken wings and brisket, plus the kale special side and potato salad

Home-made gluten-free bear pancakes

I bought these super cute bear-shaped pancake/egg molds off of Amazon and one weekend decided to try them out and make breakfast for Dan.  He also used them to make himself a fried bear egg haha.  Sooo cute and they worked pretty well as long as you use plenty of Pam.
Bear pancake in the making

Bacon, pancakes and bear egg :)

Home-made fried chicken wings and nachos

After our fried chicken attempts we decided to use the deep fryer on chicken wings.  Dan made two batches, one without breading and one with.  The one without seemed to absorb the sauce better but I think I slightly preferred the second batch with breading.  Both were really delicious though.  Dan also made home-made nachos (using real tortillas vs. chips) with home-made guacamole.  Delicious and filling though not so healthy haha.

Wings with no breading

Naked wings
Wings with gluten-free breading

Home-made guacamole.  So goood
Home-made nachos topped with beans, beef, and cheese.  Plus Dan had his pickled jalapenos and dairy-free sour cream

Home-made gluten-free fried chicken meal

I was REALLY craving fried chicken and we really couldn't just go out and get some, so we used Bisquick's gluten-free batter mix to coat some drumsticks and baked them in the oven because they seemed a little too large to deep fry.  Also whipped up some garlic mashed potatoes and made some spicy corn for a delicious, pseudo-healthy version of a very unhealthy meal.  The chicken was pretty juicy but we salted a little too much.  A very good first attempt.  Maybe next time we can use the same batter on smaller pieces of chicken and just use the deep fryer.

Garlic mashed potatoes, spicy corn and oven-baked fried chicken

Close up of the chicken yummm meattt

My plate

Sides galore

Home-made Nilagang baka

Dan and I made Nilagang Baka this time with a mix of oxtail as well as beef cubes.  The bone marrow from the oxtail definitely improved the broth.  There was a nice fattier taste in the broth and def more beef flavor.  Eating the meat off the bones took some work though.  I think we need to find short ribs to make it even better, but this was our best batch so far.

Full bowl of soup - potatoes, beef, carrots and cabbage

Another shot.  So filling

Home-made Kale, Chickpea, Chorizo and Corn Sautee

It's always a good thing to have lots of vibrant colors in your food.  This sautee was very high in protein and had a nice balance of salty and sweet flavors with a tiny bit of spice from the chorizo.  Plus the chickpeas absorb the chorizo flavors so it's as if there was twice as much meat.  A great quick meal that fills you up.