Tips-y Tuesdays: Grilling Packets

One of my favorite tips I have picked up from grilling all this past summer has been …. butter!

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Roman Fettucine Alfredo with Broccoli

Are you in the mood for a fast dish that can have everything you need all together? Starch, vegetable, protein…and it is one tasty package? It maybe isn’t the healthiest, but you could always scale back the butter and cheese a bit if you wanted. Or add extra pasta/broccoli to soak it up. We were all fans of this creamy dish which is very easy to make.

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Za’atar and Honey Butter Rockfish

Today we are keeping things simple. A little bit of this and a little bit of that make for an interesting fish flavoring. I had extra honey butter from a pastry recipe linked below, and then decided to use it on fish. Add a little savory seasoning and it worked really well. I’ve also used a similar seasoning on salmon with good results. If you don’t have za’atar seasoning, you can certainly use a different spice mix. It’s just one of my favorites lately for fish.

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Shortbread (via Bouchon Bakery)

It seems boring. Why should you make this treat with no chocolate? It also seems fussy at first glance. Again, do I have time for that with a kid around? Well, actually, it isn’t boring but deliciously buttery and vanilla-y, and it isn’t super fussy unless you want to make it that way.

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Topic-Changing Thursdays: Making Food You Can Buy

Starting back at the last school where I taught, I was teased for making food you can easily buy at the store. Obviously you can buy cupcakes, brownies, etc., but those make sense for people to make. People see those treats as easy and homey. Besides, maybe you want a variety of cupcake you can’t find at the store. Maybe you like to add fillings to your cupcakes, or something. Anyway, there are definitely two groups: foods that people see as the type you might make at home and foods you buy. What do you include in the latter category? 

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I made two things in the above picture. One I’ve mentioned on here before, and one I haven’t. Well, until now.

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Tomato Sauce with Onion and Butter

This recipe looks like any other in its cookbook. Some Italian ingredients and it makes a sauce. I did not realize how good it was supposed to be until I read about it online. It is unusual because not only do you not have to chop the onion, you also use butter instead of olive oil. You get a super sweet sauce with lots of fresh tomato flavor (and yes, you use canned tomatoes!). This is not the quickest sauce, but generally you are making other dishes with spaghetti sauce, so this could simmer while you cook the pasta, and then you can toss it together. It is ready in under an hour, and it is my new favorite sauce. I added oregano and pepper because I like a little more kick in my sauce. You could also add some red pepper flakes. It does not need garlic, so I would not recommend it. For the tomatoes, I really think the San Marzano are best. I have tried it with regular tomatoes, but they just weren’t as good.

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Homemade Tagliatelle with Sage, Bacon, and Browned Butter Sauce

This is the start of Italian Week on this blog. After watching America’s Test Kitchen where they made this pasta, I was motivated to make three related dishes. Two involve the pasta recipe, and then there is a surprise one on Friday. It’s more American than Italian, but that often is the case with the Italian food I ate growing up (and about half of my family is Italian…sooooo, yeah). You can make this pasta and have it with any sauce. In fact, I only tossed half of the pasta with sauce and left the rest plain for the next recipe. I reheated it in a marinara sauce and it was great.

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