Friday, October 25, 2013

The Addicting Peanut Noodles (and other favorites!)

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This week I have 4 recipes to share with you, 3 savory and 1 sweet.  It was a bit of a shortened week because my husband and I FINALLY got to spend a weekend all by ourselves down in Chincoteague Island, VA to celebrate our 3 year wedding anniversary.  We love our daughter like crazy but rarely get time alone or regular date nights anymore, so this was a much-needed weekend away.

We enjoyed some fantastic local food while we were there, specifically AJ's on the Creek for dinner, where we splurged and got after-dinner cocktails.  My husband enjoyed a 12-year-old scotch while I enjoyed a drink that will forever be referred to as a "My Little Pony".  My alcohol-consuming street cred has been destroyed.  Oh well, it was delicious, even if it was pink and a little fizzy!

This recipe was fantastic and used up the remaining pumpkin in my fridge, so I consider that a complete win-win.  I love baking up these type of quickbreads to have around for snacks or breakfast.  My 16-month-old loves them too, so they do double duty.

And now for my savory dishes.  This first one is a side dish I served up along a simple pan-seared salmon fillet.  I love serving couscous with salmon, but it can get a little boring.   This is an incredibly easy twist on a basic couscous with the added benefit of veggies!

This was the favorite recipe of the week for me.  I seriously could drink this peanut sauce, it's that addicting!  I like a little heat to my peanut sauce, so I was a little skeptical that this recipe didn't call for any chiles or crushed red pepper flakes.  The amount of ginger I used in the sauce picked up that slack, it had just the right amount of bite and heat and made the dish irresistible.  I would suggest definitely doing a spice rub or marinade to your chicken before baking it (unless you're using leftover chicken) and if you want more heat you can always thinly slice a few chiles and use those as garnish along with the scallions.  Yum! 

This last recipe landed on the perfect evening.  Last night was the first one that the weather had a real cold bite to it around these parts (wow, do I sound like a hillbilly or what?!), so a slow-cooker stew was perfect.  I would suggest waiting to add in the black pepper until the last 30 minutes of cooking, otherwise you get a much spicy-er stew than anticipated.  It was still delicious but to tone down the heat, wait to add the pepper!

I just realized that all of my recipes were hyphenated this week.  That, along with ellipses, are my crutches as a writer, I just love them too much!

What have you been up to in the kitchen this week?  I'm currently on the hunt for fabulous recipes using fresh cranberries, I've got a bunch in the fridge I want to use up, so share away!

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