Over the last few weeks of staying at home I’ve been trying new recipes that I’ve never made before. I’m not an avid cook so to speak, but with the extra time on my hands at home I thought it was about time I get creative with my dinners. It’s actually been pretty fun and rewarding - especially if it ends up being good (obviously that’s a huge win!) Below are some recipes that I have made recently and loved. Since we are working from home this also means that my lunches are taken care of, too!
1. Baked Pork Tenderloin: I’ve never made pork tenderloin before so, I’ll admit - this was risky! I mostly followed this recipe for inspiration. The seasoning on it made for a ridiculously good crust. I marinated it for about 4 hours while I finished up the workday. Note - it recommends a pastry brush and cast iron skillet. I didn’t have either of them and it worked out totally fine. When the pork had about 40 minutes to go I threw in some little fingerling potatoes and carrots to roast with it. I seasoned them with some rosemary/salt/pepper/olive oil. It was delish, and the leftover pork made for a mean pork sandwich.
2. Moroccan Spiced Chickpea Soup: This Food Network recipe is super hearty, full of flavor and easy to make! I also like it 1. It’s a great rainy day activity and 2. it tastes better by the day. It’s perfect for dinners and lunches. I don’t love spicy foods, but it’s really not too spicy at all if you’re worried about that. If you are, skip the cayenne and you’ll still have a really flavorful soup. I recommend having a “dipper” for it, like Naan bread or sourdough!
3. Marinated NY Strip Steak: I didn’t follow any specific recipe, but I made a super simple marinade. I love steak so I wanted to try to make it really tasty despite not having a cast iron skillet or a grill. I marinated a NY strip steak with soy sauce and worcestershire sauce (and salt/pepper) for about three hours. I took it out to let it sit to room temperature for about 20 minutes. Then I got a pan super super hot so I could sear both sides in a little olive oil. I seared both sides so a nice crust formed (yes, my fire alarm went off - sorry neighbors!) Then I put it in the oven for just about 3-5 minutes to cook the inside. I like steak medium rare so I didn’t want to over cook it. And voila! For a side, I roasted asparagus and fingerling potatoes.
4. Lemon Chicken Thighs: This super basic chicken thigh recipe is quick, easy and tastes great. I marinated the chicken for two hours in a mustard, lemon, thyme and oregano mixture. Instead of grilling the chicken (because, as I’ve said, I don’t have a grill,) I baked it. The skin crisped up nicely and I think it turned out pretty well. If you have a grill I’m sure it would be even tastier! I had it with a side of brown rice and roasted green beans.
5. Chicken Peanut Rice Noodles: I kind of made up this recipe based on my love for pad-thai. I know the essentials that go into it and kind of just went for it as a total experiment. I am sure there is a recipe that would explain this better, but you can’t really go wrong with soy sauce and peanut butter! To start, I cut up chicken into small pieces and marinated it in soy sauce and orange juice for about 2 hours. I cooked the chicken on the stove and threw in some scallions with it. Then I sautéed some bean sprouts and cooked the rice noodles. Once the noodles were done, I combined them with the chicken and bean sprouts. For the sauce, I mixed together soy sauce, peanut butter and garlic and put it over the noodles. Then topped it off with the leftover scallions!
Happy eating, friends! Share your fav Quaran-recipes in the comments!