700 recipes? 10 go-to whaaa? I know. Just, hold on. I’ll explain.
But first, hi again!
It’s been a week, and there went Christmas. And I spy 2016 around the corner!
How how how how how? It’s like time is happening so super fast these days. BLINK and done.
Things have been pretty standard around here this December – me trying to juggle five too many things (it’s a lifestyle) (no, it’s a problem) and Bjork being 100% even-headed and cool about life. Opposites attract? Or something? I’ve kept things pretty quiet-ish on the blog during this last week or two, at least by my normal GOTTA POST THREE X PER WEEK standards, but I think this week of quiet was especially necessary – spending time with family rather than WordPress, Instagram, and the gang was a much-needed drink for the soul. And apparently now that’s it’s almost 2016, I say things like “drink for the soul.” See how much we have to look forward to in the New Year?
Alright, so what’s this post all about anyways? I recently had a conversation with some friends about the Chicken Wild Rice soup recipe that I have on the blog. I mentioned that this recipe was one on my short list of “Recipes I Actually Make IRL” aaannd cue many requests for more information about what recipes are actually on that list. You know, the ones that I actually make regularly in my real life.
I figured if my RL friends want to know, you might want to know, too. I mean, you’re my friends too, and if I were a reader, I would definitely want to know – like, what does this girl actually eat FOR REAL in real, regular person life?
Answer: these ten recipes.
Now, just be clear: obviously I eat more than just these ten recipes because I’m always, always, ALWAYS making new things. It’s the blessing and the curse of the job (you’re right -> “job”). I eat every recipe that finds its way onto this blog at least once if not 500x, and obviously I love it just as much as I say I love it, and it almost makes me a little sad to NOT include some big-time favorites on this list like this chicken and this pasta and this sandwich. This isn’t really an all-encompassing list of favorites, okay?
No – this list just highlights the recipes that seem to find their way back into my life again and again and again by virtue of good taste, ease, flexibility, and familiarity.
So in case you’ve ever wondered what we really eat, what I really make for friends when they come over, what foods make their way into our lunchboxes, or which recipes I cannot live without, I’m about to tell you. Out of the more than 700 recipe posts that now live on this blog, here are my 10 go-to recipes!
You knew it was coming. You had to know. It’s just too obvious.
In my humble opinion, the 5 Minute Magic Green Sauce can single-handedly justify my existence as a blogger in 2015. We put this stuff on everything – from pizza to chips to sandwiches to toast to roasted vegetables to salads to tacos to burritos to eggs and I’ll stop there, but please know that I COULD KEEP GOING. If I’ve gone two weeks without making this sauce, it’s probably because I’ve died.
This is a STAPLE RECIPE in our lives.
Not to be confused with the 8 million other versions of chicken wild rice soup that I’ve posted on the blog, this is the easy version. The set-it-and-forget-it it one that I make when it’s the dead of winter and we need to breathe new life into our cold, frozen bones. It’s extremely thick and creamy, especially as leftovers, which I actually really like because I can kind of make it stretttccchhhhh over many meals by adding in a little extra water or milk to the leftovers. It’s so basic, so easy (I know the recipe by heart), and so good.
Exciting news: Bjork recently made this recipe. And Bjork doesn’t cook. You can and you must, friends. Bust out that crusty white bread and hop to.
This is an old recipe that always comes in handy when we’re hosting a large group OR when I need to bring someone a meal after having a baby or being sick or moving OR when I cannot hold back my love for carnitas any longer.
You get everything set in the morning and leave for work. You walk in the door at 5pm and you have an amazing, restaurant-worthy meal in your house that you can serve to your friends and your face.
I know sometimes people skip this last step, which I understand because I am admittedly the VP if not straight up prez of the Lazy Club, but I feel the need to say that YOU CANNOT SKIP THIS STEP if you want the most delicious version of carnitas. Just before serving, pop that meat under the broiler to get it all nice and brown. It gives you a second to pull out some tortillas and lime wedges and maybe some 5 Minute Magic Green Sauce (again) and BOOM – just like that, your golden-brown, juicy-but-crispy carnitas are ready.
#4: Thai Curry Of All Shapes and Sizes
My love of curry takes many forms on the blog. I can’t even link to them all, but between the Bangkok curry noodles and red curry lentils and the emergency trips for Thai takeout when I can’t even stop with my dreams of Massaman curry, there is a lot of curry action happening over here.
One of my favorite and most used recipes of this year has been the homemade (and not overwhelming!) yellow curry paste. I thought this would be a one-time thing for me, like a check it off your bucket list that you made curry paste from scratch kind of thing, but I loved it so much that I have made the curry paste at least 4x since January. And since each batch of the homemade curry paste yields 3-4 batches of curry which yields 6-8 servings of curry… yeah. #freaks
It’s old, the picture is a little weird, and no one thinks they’re going to like it.
Fine, I get it.
But if we’re actually going to talk about what recipes I make in real life, I’m telling you: THIS SOUP makes the cut many times over. It’s so good and so stupidly easy. It’s creamy-buttery-tasting without a lot of butter, completely velvety, and simple – the kind of simple where I almost always have all the necessary ingredients on hand – and I made a spin-off version with cauliflower if you’re uncomfortable with the green situation.
Confession: I mostly make this when we order pizza so that I don’t feel quite so guilty about eating pizza for the 5th night in a row. Wait, what? Us? No. Never.
This should really be called “Pizza Night Salad.”
It’s become so much of a regular on our pizza nights (which are very, very regular) that I almost would have a hard time enjoying a slice of pizza without it. It takes about 5 minutes of hands-on time and utilizes that which I have in my fridge at all times: the Magic Green Sauce.
I dunno, would you consider that fitspo?
I make them every fall. Multiple times. Without fail.
I also made them on TV, including that one part where I awkwardly described them as “craggly” (?) both in a good context and a negative context twice in the span of 60 seconds.
How’s that for convincing?
Pro Tip: Double the glaze. Just do it.
#8: Green Smoothie
I make one every day.
Okay, fine, lies.
But I TRY to make one every day. My go to is a scoop of mixed tropical-ish frozen fruit, a handful of spinach, water or coconut milk or almond milk, and a little bit of fresh ginger and agave. There are several versions of green smoothies on the blog but this one is the most recent and probably the most accurate to what I’m currently slurping through a prissy paper straw every morning.
We’re taking it wayyyy back to a time when I don’t even have a good vertical picture to bring you, but these pancakes need to be mentioned.
This is my go-to for Saturday breakfast!
They turn out perfectly every time. Fluffy, not overly wheat-y, and perfect for soaking up a lil’ butter and syrup. There isn’t even anything else I need to say about that.
This easily rivals the 5 Minute Magic Green Sauce as my most-made recipe of all time.
It also is very possible that this recipe would live at the tippy-top of a FAVORITES list. They are soft, they are thick, and they can be made in 20 minutes. I most definitely have every aspect of this recipe memorized.
It is what we bring to friends’ houses, it is what we use as the base of all other cookie desserts, it is what we make when watching movies on a Saturday night.
Is it a part of the family by now? Hard to say for sure (BUT YES).
And there they are! The 10 Go-To recipes in our real, regular life.
Because I’m a former teacher and I like to let people know these things (and because I know there are at least two of you readers out there who can appreciate these sorts of “announcements”), I just want to let you know that I have a handful of new, unusual, fun posts coming up this week. They are not recipe posts and I think you’re gonna like them. Then Monday, January 4th we are busting out the new recipes for 2016, starting with a handful that are healthy enough to make you feel good and delicious enough to make you want to actually eat them. I’m out of my mind excited.
Until then… what are YOUR go-to recipes? Please inspire me on to greatness in my regular life, you food-lovers!