Friday, July 27, 2012

{Easy} Dinner and a Book

Today started with thunderstorms, detoured through some sky-high baby mama drama and topped off with a valiant skirt-sewing effort.

I also made raspberry Jigglers and left all the van windows down during a torrential downpour.

Mama said there'd be days like this.

Here's something I've learned: When life takes a turn for the crazy? Chop some veggies. I promise, it helps. Whack up a cuke. Hack a sweet pepper.(Though for the love of all humanity, do so as symmetrically as possible.)

 Dice a zucchini into the neatest triangles and try to tell me that you don't feel a little more in command of your faculties and your overall life.

This meal has revolutionized dinnertime around here. I will eat this every single day and twice on Friday. I'm not even playing.

While we're on topic, I'd like to state something for the record:

A perfect world = Mexican food four times a week. Thai twice. Italian once.

Thank you, and God Bless.

I just can't quit beans and rice. It's nothing short of criminal that some meals on the Dinner Specials menu make you choose one or the other.

I don't sleep well when there isn't salsa in the fridge. I have a real problem here, as you can see.

But back to the matter at hand.

Granted, nothing about the above-displayed meal is "authentic". But it certainly carries its own weight in the home-cooked Mexicanish Cuisine genre and it does so with panache. For one thing, it's gorgeous in every way. For another thing? So cheap.  One more? So (pretty much) healthy. 

It's also easier than Kraft Mac and Cheese, though at this point we're really just bragging.

Throw 3 or 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts into a slow cooker. Add one can (undrained) of diced tomatoes with chilies. Toss in a couple Tablespoons of taco seasoning. Cook on low for around 4 hours. Shred that meat.

Pile a tortilla with shredded chicken and anything else that turns your crank. I added brown rice, black beans, avocado, sour cream and fresh corn and zucchini salad.

They call it a salad. I call it one of the best solutions for late-summer zucchini overload.

When the table is cleared and you've licked the peach cobbler off your plate (yes, yes, peach cobbler for dessert); after the kids are all cock-eyed on their beds, buried in that partial-paralysis sort of sleep that only happens in the thick of summer, grab yourself a book. You've earned it.

My friend Heidi Kreider's debut novel The Secret of Counting Gifts recently hit the shelves and I'm so anxious to read it. The cover art alone? Totally swoon-worthy.

The e-book is being sold through Amazon, B&N, and Smashwords for just $0.99!

You can also buy it in paperback here.

And for all you Northern/Central Indiana peeps, Heidi will be signing copies Tuesday, July 31st from 11am-1pm at the Crazy Day Gourmet (3510 Commerce Dr., Warsaw IN). Books and companion journals will be offered at a discount price and they'll be serving Snickerdoodle cupcakes.

So there. I just planned a whole evening for you and scored you a snickerdoodle cupcake in the middle of the afternoon. Never doubt my love for you.

You can repay the favor by giving me a great book recommendation of your own. Or a dinner idea. Or both.

One, two, three, GO!