*Washing lemons in a hot water before squeezing them should make it easier if squeezing by hand
*How many lemons depends on how big they are and how juicy they are. I used 3 rather large [1 lemon = 2-3 eggs] organic lemons
*Make the lemonade base (without the two last steps) ahead of time and freeze it into ice cubes to add into the lemonade as you serve it
*Lemonade should store fine in the fridge for a week
A quick and easy casserole that can be made in a large batch, making multiple casseroles at once, and freeze the ones you are not using on the day. Meal prep for the days when you need some backup and when preparing a dinner is not your first priority.
Just half bake (take out of the oven after 30 minutes or so) the casseroles you are freezing, cool them off completely, label them and put into a freezer. When you are ready to use the frozen casserole, take it out of the freezer the night before into the fridge to defrost, and the following day, bake it for about 45 minutes until bubbling.
FOUR CHEESE HAM CASSEROLE
I have gotten some inquiries why there haven't been a regular food blog posts this spring.
I knew some of this was coming about, there have been a couple of milestone birthdays in my immediate family that has taken some celebration time, family time, and travel time, so yes, I have been a bit absent.
Also, after ten years of living in my downtown home in our capital city, the whole building was sold to a developer and I am packing, getting ready to move, taking care of my disabled body so that I will not over-tax it during this stressful time while trying to find a new home.
I knew most of these things were coming up this year, so I have been planning for them ahead of time. But that does not mean I will stop blogging, nope. While I might not be developing and testing new recipes this summer, there will be lots of food inspiration and meal ideas still coming to your way. And for the past four summers, I have been posting lots of great seasonal recipes, so I will be reminding you all of those tasty tidbits on the social media with direct links. There is also the 'search' bar where you can find your favorite recipes by putting in your own keywords.
So I will be around, a lot, this summer, even if there might not be that many new recipes posted as there have been in the previous years.
So for the new chapters in life and great summers, I'll say
PEACHY BOURBON PORK
SWEET POTATO & BLACK BEAN CASSEROLE
This dish is not only delicious but it also looked so nice. It is a side dish, but I used it as the main course and with some steamed vegetables and a green salad on the side it was a filling and lovely meal.
Couple of notes to go with it:
- I would use half a sweet potato per serving for a side dish and a whole if used as a main course if that gives you a better visual how much you need
- If you have a mandoline, it is a perfect tool to cut the sweet potatoes with.
- The time in the oven is depended on the thickness of your sweet potato slices. Make sure the potatoes are done before serving.
- Interlocking the pieces of sweet potatoes makes the casserole not only look nice, it also makes the sweet potatoes cook faster.
- If the cheese you use is very salty, be careful with the amount of salt you use on top of the casserole before the first baking.
I really liked the subtle flavors of the herbs with the beans and sweet potatoes. I saw a picture of a dish like this on the internet, and I had to try to re-create it, and I admit, I was happy with the results. I hope you are as well.
'Till next time
ORANGE CHICKEN WITH BALSAMIC VINEGAR
I saw the funniest thing on Instagram the other day about people wanting just the recipes from a food blog, not the life story of a blogger. "Get to the recipe first" - well, that's just fine with me, so from now on, I will be posting the recipes at the top of the post, and comment only if there are some notes I wanted to pass on.
If you want to make this tasty dish meat-free, use white, hydrated beans instead of chicken. That will add to the cooking time considerably if the beans are not ready cooked. You can also do this in a slow cooker with the beans, but then leave the honey and butter to be added just minutes before serving. With the chicken, it takes less than 30 minutes to make this dish, so I don't think a slow cooker option is necessary, but if you decide to do that, remember that honey and butter right before getting ready to serve.
Hope you'll enjoy this quick yet flavor rich dish!
'Till next time