Recently, I have noticed that education must have some sort of vendetta against eating lunch. Many teachers only get 30 minutes, which definitely isn’t enough time to wrap up, go out, and have a nice meal. Many of the administrators I work with forgo lunch all together. Not to mention that there is lunch duty and other responsibilities that call to us during our lunch hours. I know it is legally required, at least in the state of Texas, for educators to receive a 30 minute duty free lunch, but in our current landscape, that is often not the reality.
Let’s expand this vendetta against lunch to meals in general because let’s face it, eating is a challenge. When you get home the last thing you want to do is cook a meal. You’re exhausted mentally and physically. Sunday meal preps seem like an impossible feat when you must also create a lesson plan for the week. The Sunday scaries are real, and batch cooking 5-7 meals many times is not possible or sustainable. Soooo, what do we do?
A teacher suggested to me a quick meal called egg roll in a bowl. I made it when I got home, and it was so easy that it took less than 30 minutes and little to no prep. I also had lunch for the next couple of days. It made it that much easier to win a battle for food in this education world. It inspired me to go on a journey to find quick meals, I mean super quick meals, with the smallest amount of effort possible! Here are three of the recipes I found!
For this recipe, I used Italian sausage because it is already seasoned, an “asian mix chopped salad” from Aldi, and PF Chang’s sweet red chili sauce. It was so quick, delicious, and I had enough for lunch the next day! I linked a full recipe if you need more step by step instructions! (the subheading of this section is a link to a recipe for this!)
Rotisserie chicken Alfredo
I got a rotisserie chicken from Kroger and Primal Kitchen’s dairy free Alfredo sauce, but you can use any Alfredo sauce. I sautéed some spinach, mushrooms, and combined it all together. Cook some pasta, and you have an easy, quick, after school meal.
My coworker told me about this one, and it was easy and great! All I did was wrap chicken and Italian salad dressing in foil, then bake it in the oven. Yes, it was that easy! I roasted some veggies and potatoes also, but you can make this even quicker by buying microwave steam-able veggies and potatoes.
I also have a blog post on eating well in a hurry, and I still employ those tips and techniques so, it’s linked to this post!
Please, please, please eat well. Your body does so much for you, and it needs nourishment to function. So many times I have seen teachers and administrators alike skip lunch and eat snacks from the vending machine because they do not have the time to prep, and or they spent their lunch prepping for another class or task. I want us as educators to prioritize things that will enrich our lives both mentally and physically because both elements are more connected than you may realize.
This is a decadent way for you to prepare your brussels sprouts. A perfect addition to any meal to make it feel special and fancy pantsy! These were inspired by the brussels sprouts I got at Ruth’s Chris Steak House. I wanted to bring that luxury to my dinner table, and I think that I succeeded! Here is the recipe, so you can bring some deliciousness to yours!
Ingredients and Equipment
Brussels Sprouts (I used 1 16 oz bag from Walmart)
Butter 1 stick (salted or unsalted)
Minced Garlic 2 tbs
Bacon 4 strips
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
Garlic powder to taste (optional)
Cast Iron Skillet
Making the Brussels Sprouts
Step 1: Bake the Brussels Sprouts
First, preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit..
While the oven is heating, cut each brussels sprout in half, and spread them out on a metal baking sheet. Next, drizzle olive oil onto the brussels sprouts and make sure they are evenly coated. Then season the brussels sprouts with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. The garlic power is optional. I like garlic an awful lot, so the extra seasoning is my jam!
After seasoning, place in the oven for about 15 minutes. They do not have to be cooked all the way through because we are going to finish them off in the skillet!
Step 2: Create the Sauce
In a regular skillet, cook 4 slices of bacon until crispy then set them aside on a paper towel to drain. I used 4 slices, but if you would like more bacon in your brussel sprouts, you can adjust it to your desired bacon level. I mean, who doesn’t like more bacon?
In a separate cast iron skillet, melt butter, on low heat, until the bottom of the skillet is evenly covered. The amount of butter you use will depend on the width and depth of your skillet. I used about half a stick.
Once your butter is melted, add 2 tbs of minced garlic
Step 3: Combine
By now, your brussels sprouts should be ready to come out of the oven. Place them into your cast iron skillet.
Chop the bacon into small pieces and add them to the skillet. You can use a knife, but I tore off the pieces with my hands!
Next, cover and cook on low-medium heat until the brussel sprouts soften and begin to brown! (tip, if your butter starts to smoke, you have the heat too high. Also, you can always add more butter to the pan while cooking to make sure your mixture doesn’t burn.)
Lastly, squeeze lemon juice onto the brussels sprouts at the last minute before taking the brussels sprouts out of the pan. This is very important! The acidity brings brightness to the rich buttery flavor. I used about half a lemon, but it is really to taste!
And there you go! A delicious and easy way to cook brussels sprouts. I paired my brussels sprouts with lamb chops and mashed potatoes for a delicious Christmas dinner! As usual, thank you so much for reading. It means so much to me that people take the time to read and try my recipes. Don’t forget to make Everydaylicious!
If you want to dress something up, throw a lemon butter sauce on it and taste the magic! My lemon butter chicken is the best weeknight meal because it is easy and requires few ingredients, but it doesn’t cheat you on taste!
Ingredients and Equipment
butter 1 stick
minced garlic 2 tbsp
lemon juice 1 cup
thyme 1/2 tsp
salt to taste
pepper 1/2 tsp
chicken breast fillets (or normal chicken breast)
Step 1: Create the Sauce
In a skillet, on low, melt 1 stick of butter. After the butter has melted completely, add 1/2 of a grilled onion to the skillet and cook on low until the union is translucent. Next, add 1/2 tsp of thyme, 1/2 tsp of oregano, 1/2 tsp of pepper, 2tbs of minced garlic, and 1 cup of lemon juice to the melted butter. Stir, and cook on low until the sauce has thickened and the onions begin to brown. You can turn the heat up to medium but be careful not to burn the butter. If you start to see smoke, turn the heat down.
Step 2: Brown the Chicken
Season you chicken as desired. I like to put salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste. Heat of 1 tbs of olive oil in a separate skillet and add the chicken breast. Cook thoroughly until there is no pink throughout the breast and it begins to brown. You always want to cook chicken well done to avoid food poisoning!
Step 3: Combine Chicken and (Optional)
If you want your chicken to take on some extra flavor, add your chicken to the lemon sauce and heat for 1-2 minutes for the sauce to begin to work its way into the chicken! Pair it with vegetables, potatoes, or rice. The possibilities are endless!
Thank you so much for reading! Subscribe to get email notifications, so you don’t miss a recipe, and don’t forget to make Everydaylicious!
Lately, I have found myself craving lemon bars. Instead of going out and buying them, I decided that I would try and make them myself. I am glad that I did. Here is the recipe if you would like to do the same!
Ingredients and Equipment
sugar 3 cups
powdered sugar 2/3 cups
all-purpose flour 2 and 1/2 cup
Salt 1/2 tsp
melted unsalted butter 12 tbsn
Making the Short Bread Crust!
Step 1: Prepare dry ingredients
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 2 and 1/2 cups of all-purpose flower, 2/3 cup of powdered sugar, and 1/2 tsp of salt.
Step 2: Mix in melted butter
Add 12 tbsn of melted butter to your dry ingredients. I used my standing mixer with a paddle attachment, but you can use a hand mixer or you can mix it by hand. This will create a crumble. Don’t freak out if it doesn’t seem like a traditional batter, it is supposed to be thick and crumbly!
Step 3: Press the batter/crumble
Line your baking dish with parchment paper. Make sure that your parchment paper hangs over the side of your dish so that you can use it to remove your bars in the end. Pour the crumble into the baking dish and use your hands to press it down into the dish covering the whole bottom. The mixer should come together creating a crust. Once the entire bottom is evenly covered, place the pan in the oven to bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes or until slightly golden brown.
Making the Filling
While your crust is in the oven, prepare your filling. You want to pour your filling on the crust while the crust is still warm, so use your time wisely!
Step 1: Juice your Lemons
You will need one full cup of lemon juice. How many lemons you need will vary, but I used 6 lemons to get my cup. If you would like to use pre-squeezed lemon juice, you can, but you will not get the same strong lemon flavor!
Step 2: Combine and Ingredients
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 3 cups of sugar, 8 whole eggs, and 1 cup of lemon juice. I used a hand whisk, but you can use a mixer if you would like. Its super easy to mix, just whisk until everything is combined.
Pour, Bake, and Chill
The last thing to do is to pour the filling mixture into the baking dish over the crust, and pop it back into the oven. Bake your lemons bars oat 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 24-26 minutes. Make sure you rotate your bars halfway through to ensure even cooking. The middle will still be a little jiggly! Once it is done cooking, let it cool to room temp, and then put it in the fridge to chill for about an hour. I like to top mine with powdered sugar before serving!
I really enjoyed making and sharing these beautiful lemon bars! Let me know if you try the recipe, and remember to make everydaylicious!
I was born and raised in central Texas, and if you ask any Texan what they think of when they hear the word summer, you will probably get an answer that involves streaks of 100+ degree days and trying to beat the heat! Some years when the heat got unbearable, my friends and family would venture somewhere else. Another state further up north, or out of the country all together! Since we couldn’t travel this year, I have been making dishes that remind me of my time away to bring some fun to my quarantine. This time, I was inspired by my trip to Ireland, so I decided to bring my favorite adult beverage and my favorite childhood snacks together to help cool down the hot days! I created a Jameson and coffee infused ice cream with Snickers bites for a crunch! I also wanted my golden retriever, Benjamin, to join in on the fun, so I made a companion ice cream for him. It was amazing kicking back and enjoying this treat with my best friend. Here is the recipe and remember to make everydaylicious!
Ingredients and Equiptment
Human Ice Cream
heavy cream 2 cups
sweet and condensed milk 1 can (14 ounces)
whisky 1/4 cup
caramel coffee creamer 1/4 cup
espresso powder or fine instant coffee (I used two individually wrapped single serving packets of Cefe Bustelo, but you can measure out a couple of tablespoons to taste of any brand you want)
snickers bar 1 kings sized
Dog Ice cream
plain Greek yogurt
peanut butter (you can really add any treats that your dog likes! Carrots and peanut butter are just my dog’s favorite!)
whisk, hand mixer, or standing mixer
container with a lid or cling wrap
Making the Human Ice Cream
Step 1: Make the ice cream base
Measure two cups of heavy whipping cream into a bowl or your standing mixer with a whisk attachment. Beat on high until stiff peaks (That is when you heavy cream has become whipped cream.) Next, on a medium speed, mix in one 14 ounce can of sweet and condensed milk until fully incorporated.
Step 2: Add the fixin’s
This is where you can add anything that you want to the base, but if you would like to follow my recipe, this is what I added! Mix in 1/4 cup of whiskey (I used Jameson, because it is my favorite and reminds me of a simpler time when I could travel!) 2 packets of instant espresso coffee, 1/4 cup of caramel coffee creamer, and 1 king sized snicker’s bar cut into chunks.
Step 3: Freeze!
After you have mixed in all of your ingredients, transfer the mixture to a container with an air-tight lid. You can also use a simple freezer friendly bowl and cover it with shrink wrap! Pop it in the freezer and in 4 hours, your ice cream will be ready to go!
Making the Dog Icecream
Step 1: Mix
For the dog ice cream, all you have to do is mix Greek yogurt with any treats your dog loves. I used 3 cups of Greek yogurt, cut up about 5 baby carrots, melted about 1/4 cup of peanut butter, and mixed all of it together in a bowl. Its that easy!
Step 2: Freeze
Transfer the ingredients to the freezer in a dog safe tupperwear (I probably wouldn’t use glass). I put it into small containers so that they are single serve. It is convenient just to pop it out the freezer and give it to Benjamin! This also takes about 4 hours to set!
I hope you and your furry friend enjoy these recipes! Let me know if you try it and remember to make everydaylicious!
One of my all-time favorite memories is going to Paris for the first time with my best friend. For years, we swooned when Carrie Bradshaw was wondered around Paris shoe shoping and dining in fashionable restaurants. As we watched we fantasized about one day galivanting down those same streets. This was finally our time to go to our dream city and what better way to spend our time than EATING our way through Paris. We ate nonstop for a week, and through the food-drunken haze of French cuisine, one memory cuts through all of them, and that was going to Ladurée for the first time! The store was a pastel dream, and the macarons were perfect, soft, fluffy, and a beautiful balance of flavors.
This year, I was not able to go abroad, so I decided to bring Paris to me and thus began my journey to the perfect macaron! It took many tries, falling down several “YouTube macaron rabbit holes”, and a lot of courage to finally get the perfect cookie. I am here to encourage you on your journey by sharing mine! Maybe watching me face my fears can help you with yours ❤ Here’s the recipe, and don’t forget to make every-daylicious!
Ingredients and equiptment
For the cookies
white sugar 100g
powdered sugar 130g
almond flour 140g
egg whites 100g
salt 1/4 tspn
vanilla extract (or extract of your choice) 1/4 tspn
cream of tartar 1/4 tspn
gel food coloring (optional)
For the icing
butter 2 sticks (1 cup)
powdered sugar 2 cups
vanilla extract 1/4 tspn (or any flavor you want! You can even juice some berries and use that!)
milk 1 tbs
Food coloring (optional)
Mixer (it can be a hand mixer, but it will be an arm workout!)
scale (I tried to skip the scale and use a measuring cup. It didn’t work for me.)
flat baking sheet
macaron mat (you can use parchment paper but it will be MUCH harder to get them perfect!)
round piping tip
Now Let’s do This: Making the Cookies!
Step 1: Dry ingredients
Add 140g of almond flour and 130 grams of powdered sugar to the food processor and pulse it several times. You want it to be really fine, but be careful because if you pulse it too long, you will make almond butter! Run this mixture through a sieve, discarding the big almond bits caught in the sieve. Do not force the bits through. Repeat this twice more (I tried to skip this, but I got cracks and an uneven texture.) Set aside the mixture for later.
Step 2: The Meringue!
Add 100g of ROOM TEMPERATURE egg whites to your mixer. If you do not use room temperature eggs, your meringue will not whip! With the whisk attachment, begin to whip your egg whites on a medium speed until it begins to froth. Then add 1/4 tspn of cream of tartar and 1/4 tspn of salt. Next, continue to whisk the mixture on high until it is white. Once white, drizzle in the 100 grams of white sugar while the mixer is still running. Do this very slowly as to not pop the air bubbles and deflate your meringue! After the sugar is fully incorporated, continue to whip on high until you see a soft peak (That is when your meringue forms a peak, but it isn’t stiff enough to stand on its own. See picture to the right.
Once you have reached the soft peak stage, now is time to start adding your flavoring and coloring. You can use any extract of your choice. I used vanilla in mine! For coloring, make sure you use gel food coloring. Liquid coloring can change the consistency of your meringue.
Once you have added your flavor and color, whip your mixture on high until you get hard peaks. That is when your batter can stand on its own, and you can turn your bowl upside down without anything falling out!
Step 3: Macoronage (The fancy name for mixing the batter!)
Now that we have both part of our mixtures ready, it is time combine them! Transfer the meringue to a mixing bowl and grab your spatula. Sprinkle 1/3 cup of the almond flour powdered sugar mix from step one onto your meringue. FOLD the dry ingredients into the meringue until fully incorporated. Then add in the rest of the batter and begin to fold the mixture. This is where you need to take your time and pay close attention. You should mix until the consistency is like flowing lava. If you are like me and have never seen lava before, you can use the figure 8 test. Once you can drip the batter off your spatula and create a figure 8 without your batter breaking, it is ready. DO NOT MIX ANYMORE! If you under mix your mixture you can get cracks or hollow cookies. If you over mix, you will not get the lovely macaron feet (the bubbles at the bottom of the cookie that characterize a macaron). It is easier to judge consistency after seeing it, so I included a video bellow. Once the mixture is ready, transfer your batter to a piping bag with a round piping tip.
Step 4: Pipe, Drop, and Wait
On top of your flat baking sheet, place your macaron mat (or parchment paper.) With your tip straight up and down, pipe an oval filling the smaller circle of the template (if you are using parchment paper, that is about 1.5 inches across). After you have piped all your macarons, it is time to drop the tray (literally!). Pick up the tray and bang it on the counter a couple of times! Seriously, don’t skip this step. This brings all the air bubbles from the bottom of the tray to the top, so they don’t crack your cookies. If you are feeling extra type A today, you can grab a toothpick and pop any of the smaller air bubbles you see. After you drop the tray, you must wait! Let the cookies rest until a skin forms on top and you can rub your finger over the top of your cookies without indenting them. This will help your cookies rise vertically, and get those signature feet we were talking about earlier.
Once your cookies have formed a skin, preheat your oven to 320 degrees Fahrenheit (160 degrees Celsius). Bake your cookies for 13-15 minutes. Be sure that you only put in one tray at a time. Macarons are selfish and want their own space. They are the diva of cookies; they don’t share a dressing room hunty! Once fully baked, take them out of the oven, let them cool, and then transfer the cookies to a cooling rack.
Making the filling!
Now its time to work on the filling. Macarons are traditionally filled with all types of things. The possibility is endless. I favor a tart filling to balance out the sweetness of a macaron. My favorite is a Lemon curd, but for the purpose of this recipe, because we are focusing on perfecting the cookie, I am including the recipe to a simple American buttercream. You can always add raspberry sauce that has been ran through a sieve, or lemon juice in place of vanilla extract for a better contrast of flavor!
Step one: Cream the Butter
Put two sticks (1 cup) of room temperature butter into your mixer (you can also use a hand mixer). I have used both salted and unsalted butter, and it didn’t make much of a difference to me. Beat the butter on high until it turns lighter in color.
Step 2: Add Powdered Sugar
Pause the mixer and add int 1 cup of powdered sugar, beat until sugar is fully incorporated. (HINT: start on low so that the powdered sugar doesn’t explode all over your kitchen.) Pause the mixer again and add the second cup of powdered sugar. Whip until everything is fully incorporated and the batter is a pale white!
Step 3: Add in all the fixins!
Add in the 1/4 tspn of vanilla extract (Here is also where you can add juices, flavoring, sprinkles, or any other cool stuff you can come up with!). Add milk in 1tbs increments until you reach a silky consistency. And there you have it, buttercream! Add it to a piping bag to fill your cookies!
Take one of your cookies, and pipe on your butter cream to the flat bottom of the cookie! You can have as much or as little icing as you like! Take another cookie and place it on top of the piped buttercream to create a sandwich! There you go, you have macarons.
Thank you so much for reading! I really loved facing my fears and bringing a little piece of French fabulousness to my everyday life. I especially loved sharing it with you. Please share if you try the recipe! Remember, persistence is key with these cookies, and remember to make everydaylicious!