Saturday, September 5, 2009


Welcome to The Sunday Cook. Why? Because I love to cook, however I usually only cook on Sunday when I make a special dinner for my parents.

For several years now I have done my prep work at my house and then taken all the ingredients to my parents house to actually cook the meal. Soon (yay! - we've been talking about this for a few years now) we will combine our households and I won't need to transport any part of the meal from one house to another. We're building an addition onto our house! There will be a master bedroom, master bathroom, and a four season room added onto the back of our house specifically for my parents. We'll share the kitchen, laundry, dining area, and family/living/great room (it's only one room - call it what you will). I'll share our progress as we get it all underway. I'm just thrilled that we have actually hired a designer/architect.

Anyway, this blog is not about the home addition - it's about the food. While I am not a complete vegetarian, I'm pretty darn close. I will eat eggs, cheese, fish, and rarely poultry (and that is increasingly rare). I will use milk products only when I cannot find a soy or other substitute. For example, today I couldn't find a light cream or other substitute, so the recipe also allowed evaporated milk - I purchased a fat free evaporated milk. An interesting aspect to Sunday dinner is the fact that my parents are not vegetarians. They are good sports, though, and thoroughly willing to eat vegetarian at least one day each week!

Here's how Sunday dinner comes about: I start looking for a recipe the Friday evening before the Sunday dinner. Sometimes I know what I will cook early, usually I know what I will cook Saturday night and will then need to stop by the grocery Sunday morning. I'm getting much better at figuring it out earlier. One day I may actually have it figured out before Thursday (when my husband does the majority of our grocery shopping). That will be one delightful day - when I don't have to go to the grocery because my husband was able to pick up any needed ingredients on Thursday.

I had been posting the links to the recipes I use on Facebook, and began to wonder if my fb friends think I only think about food, since it's what I post most about. I guess I do think about food quite a bit - I'm always on the look out for new recipes and new ingredients. Oh - and another complication to what we have for Sunday dinner: I'm a weight watcher. I've lost 15 pounds so far and am determined to lose even more. It's taken me seven months to lose those first 15, I certainly hope I get the next 15 off a little quicker than that. I also exercise six days a week - that helps a lot!

Last Sunday I cooked Penne with Porcini Mushrooms and Beer-Stewed Artichoke Hearts. It was okay, but a bit bitter. I don't think I'll cook it again, but I will certainly consider the method again. I also made a Pineapple Cheesecake Pie that was absolutely divine (and I did lighten it up - I used 1/3 less fat cream cheese and plain light soy milk). I will make that again. Everyone LOVED the pie!

This Sunday, I am making a Pumpkin Cheesecake Pie to take to my sister's house (yep - we really liked that pineapple cheesecake pie, now I'm making a similar pie with pumpkin); again I will lighten it up as much as I can - this is the recipe that will have the fat free evaporated milk in it. My sister is hosting a double birthday party for both her mother-in-law and her father-in-law. I'll be taking our parents over there for the party.

I find it kind of amusing that for my first post as the Sunday Cook, I'm not actually cooking on Sunday! However, since this is Labor Day weekend, I will be cooking Monday night dinner for my parents.

Here's what we are having:
Portobello-and-Zucchini Tacos
Corn & Black Bean Salad
Fresh Guacamole (homemade)
Fresh Salsa (store bought)
Baked tortilla chips (store bought)

Yum! I'll let you know how it all turns out.

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