Thursday, May 10, 2012

Pintrest Dinner Challenge

As I've mentioned before, I am a huge fan of Pintrest.  A few weeks ago I set a little challenge for myself:  cook a new Pintrest dinner recipe each day for a week.

Since these were going to be weeknight meals for our busy family, I stuck to recipes that were easy to prepare and family-friendly.  You'll find everything from a grilled sandwich to Indian, meatloaf to vegetarian.  Just click on the name of the recipe for complete instructions.  Ready to hear how it went?  Let's go!

Day One: Honey BBQ Turkey Meatloaf with Roasted Carrots

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Imagine if BBQ ribs and meatloaf had a baby.  This would be it!  Amazing smokey flavor and bite.  This was a huge hit with my family.  A couple of changes...I used agave nectar in lieu of honey and would probably increase the amount of panko next time, but overall a delicious take on meatloaf.  To counter the BBQ I served it with simple roasted carrots.  Take a half bunch of carrots, peel and cut in 2-3 inch pieces.  Toss in olive oil and roast on a baking sheet at 375 degrees for about 30-40 minutes.  Sprinkle with sea salt and fresh pepper.

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These were so simple, healthy and actually very tasty.  I used Wholly brand salsa which is found in the produce section, but if you have the time (and energy) there are some excellent homemade salsa recipes on Pintrest like this one.  Next time I may use sweet potatoes just to up the flavor and health benefits.

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Technically, this was not a new recipe, but we had a late afternoon swim lesson so this Crockpot dish fit the bill.  To be honest, it's not really even a recipe, just a few ingredients thrown in with some chicken breasts.  But I tell you, it's one of the fastest ways to make great tacos.  Occasionally I'll put black beans and corn in with the chicken.  I serve them with the typical taco fixings and either LaTortilla Factory Handmade Corn Tortillas or Mission Flax & Blue Corn Tortillas.  

Day Four: Chicken Tikka

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I love Indian food and despite the unique ingredients, it really is simple to make.  Don't be scared!  If you don't have or can't find garam masala, feel free to sub curry instead.  Because the chicken marinates in yogurt overnight, it comes off the grill moist and flavorful.  Couple of changes I suggest making: use chicken breasts instead of thighs and no red food coloring.  To me it's healthier and tastier that way.  I served it with the Whole Wheat Naan from Trader Joe's.  The leftover mint is great for adding to homemade iced tea too.  Hopefully I'll have my own herb garden soon, so I can grow our own.

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Hands down the favorite meal of the week.  Immediately after taking his first bite, my husband used profanity to describe the passion he had for this sandwich.  Even proclaiming it restaurant quality.  I have to admit, it is a darn awesome sandwich.  Panini really.  I used Frank's Buffalo Wing Sauce instead of the hot sauce mentioned in the recipe and in lieu of the white sauce I used chunky blue cheese dressing.  Mmm...My husband picked up some fresh thick bakery bread and we used our panini maker to grill.  Much easier than trying to flip in a pan.  This would also be amazing on ciabatta bread.  

I hope my own Pintrest Dinner Challenge has encouraged you to try a few new recipes yourself.  If once a day for a week is too much, aim for once a week or once a month.  It's never too late to try something new.  And don't forget to share how it goes!

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