She told us that she wanted to see what it was like to live in the city, in fewer words. So I had her help me pick the menu for the evening and then dragged her with me to go grocery shopping, at three different grocery stores (Market Basket, Whole Foods AND Trader Joe's). By the time we got home it was almost 7PM so we decided to start dinner with an appetizer. She looked up a recipe for bruschetta online and then I made my own interpretation of the recipe. I mixed together chopped up tomatoes, basil, balsamic vinegar, EVOO, salt & pepper. Then broiled a split baguette that we brushed with olive oil. When it was all toasted I rubbed it with garlic cloves and sprinkled it with Jane's Crazy Mixed Up Salt. We finished of the garlic toast with the tomato mixture. It was delicious!
After the fantastic bruschetta we quickly got to work prepping the ingredients for dinner. Here's my little helper hard at work. Isn't she cute?!
For our entree J-Ro picked Sweet and Sour Chicken courtesy of Cooking Light, April 2007. We served it over a bed of brown rice.
It was a beautiful, warm day so we decided to make a summery dessert. We picked Raspberry-lime freeze courtesy of Martha Stewart Living, July 2007.
Our meal was fantastic! I was so lucky to have such a great helper too!
Lauren's review: All of our dishes were fantastic!
Matt's review: Appetizers to dessert were great! I don't even like raspberries and I loved dessert!
J-Ro's review: The chicken was a little spicy but it was all delicious! So much fun too!
Final decision: The recipes are keepers! Family approved!
Sweet and Sour Chicken
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon bottled minced garlic
1 teaspoon bottled ground fresh ginger (such as Spice World)
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
3/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1 (15 1/4-ounce) can pineapple chunks in juice, undrained
1/3 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons dry sherry
1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1/4 cup dry-roasted chopped cashews
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic, ginger, red pepper, and chicken to pan; sauté 5 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken mixture from pan; set aside.
Add onion, celery, and bell pepper to pan, and sauté 4 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain pineapple, reserving 1/2 cup juice. Add 1 cup pineapple chunks to pan; cook 30 seconds. Reserve remaining pineapple for another use. Combine the reserved 1/2 cup juice, soy sauce, sherry, cornstarch, and sugar in a bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth.
Return chicken mixture to pan. Stir in juice mixture; bring to boil. Cook 1 minute. Sprinkle with cashews.
2 1/2 pints raspberries (about 7 cups)
1 pint raspberry sorbet, softened
1 tablespoon finely grated lime zest, plus more for garnish
1/4 cup fresh lime juice (from 2 or 3 limes)
1 cup vanilla ice cream, softened
Put 5 1/2 cups of raspberries, the sorbet, lime zest, and lime juice into a blender. Use a spatula to push down the ingredients. Pulse a few times, then puree until very smooth. Add ice cream and puree, stopping and stirring with spatula as needed. Stir in 1 cup raspberries.
Pour mixture into glasses. Garnish with remaining 1/2 cup raspberries and lime zest. Serve immediately.