"WE'RE TRYING SOMETHING NEW FOR SUPPER TONIGHT."
Now, first of all, come on, children. JUST COME ON. I cannot stress how not-scary the food I make for this family is. Do you know how many times I've tried to sneak things like mushrooms or escargot or backyard rabbit into their meals? Zero. Zero times. I get being a bit picky; I have a serious aversion to cream-of-anything blobs from a can, and if my mom tries to tell me that sugar-free jelly tastes just like the real thing one more time, I'm having her committed. (Tastes like I licked the inside of a beaker in Chem 120, Mom. A strawberry-flavored beaker.) But I cannot eat Lazy Beef Lasagna and Sour Cream Noodle Bake (which are basically the same recipe but with different spices) every night of the week like certain ungrateful underage heathens currently residing in this house. Sometimes you just have to try a new recipe. Or five. In the space of a week.
So, it's entirely possible I brought this whole thing on myself.
I liked almost all of the new recipes. Derek only once droned, "I love everything you cook," which is his nice way of saying This food is the worst. Where's the sour cream noodle bake?
Here's what I've been subjecting our family to, so you, too, can torture your own ungrateful loved ones:
- PW's Chicken Pot Pie. I had forgotten all about chicken pot pie until my sister made a rather bitter comment recently about how she loved this dish growing up but never got to eat it just because her picky older sister hated it. I decided I'd try making it for myself, because sometimes food you didn't like as a kid is less scary once you can see for yourself what all the ingredients are, in addition to controlling what exactly goes into it. Well. It was delicious. Derek and I both loved it, and it was possibly even better heated up for lunch the next day. I'm also not sure why I've been so intimidated by PW's homemade crust; that thing was easy as pie (THAT'S RIGHT. I WENT THERE). There's also a delicious kind of irony to loving something now that my sister couldn't have because I wouldn't eat it as a child. (Really, for the most part I've given up my life of younger-sister torture, but sometimes... well, sometimes you just can't help yourself. Love you, Kelli!)
- PW's Hamburger Soup. I liked this. Derek liked it. One of the kids liked it, but I really can't be expected to remember which kid likes which thing anymore (don't you judge me). None of us just really, really loved it. I liked that it had a lot of veggies in it, and is really pretty easy to throw together, although it took longer than her supposed prep time, probably because there was a lot of chopping and I'm rather attached to all eight of my fingers and both my thumbs. I'm selfish that way. I'd halve the recipe next time; if it were something all three kids loved I'd need the whole recipe, but as it was I had a ton of leftovers. Good for the impending cold weather.
- PW's Cajun Chicken Pasta. Now, this, THIS I loved. I was pretty much the only one, though. Derek ate it and said it was fine, none of the kids cared much for it, although Adelaide really liked the chicken in it. I do think next time I'll cook the chicken the same way but omit the pasta and double the veggies to make my very own perfect meal that will keep me in lunch leftovers all week. Even this first way, though, I had it for supper Saturday night, lunch and supper Sunday, then lunch again on Monday and still wasn't sick of it. I only stopped because I ran out of the chicken and veggies and was left with a big container of noodles. I can't wait to make this again with my adjustments.
- Foodie Bride's Slow Cooker Honey Chipotle Chicken Enchiladas. This was super easy and super flavorful. My family all did this adorable thing where they acted like their mouths were on fire after one tiny chipotle pepper in adobo sauce-bite, and everyone scrambled for milk and yogurt. I thought the heat was fine, but then, I love spicy food. I almost never cook it for the fam because this is how they react, and as a result, their heat threshold is depressingly low. Derek admitted it had good flavor, was just a bit spicy for him, the kids all acted like I was trying to kill them through their mouth-holes. I thought it was very tasty both for supper and left over for lunch.
- Foodie Bride's Mojo-Brined Chicken. Now, listen, my people. If you're going to make one recipe on this list, make this one. And just in case you've lost interest in this post and are only skimming the remainder, I'll put it in caps to catch your attention: THIS IS THE ONE YOU MAKE. It's an easy and quick brine that will render your grilled chicken so juicy and full of divine flavor that you'll give thanks to God for delivering you from the bland, dry chicken wilderness you've been slogging through into the promised land of tasty, tasty poultry. The end and amen.