month 1 recap – my 2012 cooking goal!

by amy on 2 February 2012

month #1 of my make-one-new-dinner-a-week challenge for 2012 is completed! 5 weeks down, 47 to go. =) below is a recap of what i made for the challenge this past month. i’ve only posted 1 of the recipes on my blog thus far, so let me know if you’d like to see any of the other recipes posted soon!

week 1: spicy fried rice with bean sprouts, chicken + peanuts: i had high hopes for this amazing-sounding recipe, especially because it was written by mark bittman. in the end, my husband + i just thought it was so-so — a bit bland, honestly. if i make it again, i’d pump up the seasonings + spices. not bad, but not impressive enough for me to photograph – never a good sign around here! 

week 2: italian pasta + cannellini bean soup (pasta e fagioli): if you saw my post on this soup, you already know that it is amazing! savory, complex + utterly delicious. bonus: while the recipe has bacon + chicken stock, this soup is easily adaptable for vegetarians (see post for details).

week 3: baked rigatoni with bechamel, parmesan + tiny meatballs: adapted slightly from this recipe, it turned out delicious! i was a bit nervous, as the rich bechamel + teeny caramelized meatballs were unlike anything i’d made before. let me tell you — i am beyond happy that i made it. it was way easier than i expected, + more importantly, it was incredibly decadent, rich + tasty.

week 4: spicy chicken + caramelized onion quesadillas: these scrumptious quesadillas were very loosely adapted from this recipe. the spicy chicken/caramelized onion mixture is packed full of amazing, savory flavors that work perfectly with the homemade tortillas + tasty monterey jack cheese i used for the quesadillas. between dinner + lunch the next day, every bite was gobbled up.

week 5: chicken, chickpea + roasted red pepper stew: i was really excited to try this recipe, as i love mediterranean flavors but rarely cook with them. thankfully, this stew did not disappoint! it is wonderfully hearty without being heavy + bursting with deep, interesting flavors. i served it with the homemade pita i made a few days earlier (on the blog soon!) + my husband + i both loved it!

so, there you have it — month 1 of my 2012 one-new-dinner-a-week cooking challenge! let me know if you’d like to see any of the above recipes featured on the blog within the next few weeks!

EmailTwitterFacebookStumbleUponGoogle BookmarksShare

{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

1 amy b.s. February 2, 2012 at 10:16 am

wow. everything looks quite amazing!

2 amy February 2, 2012 at 10:19 am

thanks so much, amy! =)

3 Steph@TheChickpeaChickadee February 2, 2012 at 10:40 am

it all looks delicious. I definitely want to try and make the pasta e fagioli and the quesadillas. I really like that you used homemade tortillas for your quesadillas. Kudos to you for trying something new.

4 amy February 2, 2012 at 10:45 am

thanks, steph! i’ll definitely make sure to get the quesadilla recipe up soon, then, because i changed the recipe so much that it barely resembles the initial recipe. =) thanks for your kind words!

5 morgan February 2, 2012 at 11:11 am

I am so in love with this goal! I made a new recipe last week. Even though I missed most of January, I think I’ll jump on board.

6 amy February 2, 2012 at 11:26 am

thanks, morgan! it’s definitely livened up dinnertime ’round here + gotten me out of the dinner rut that i sometimes fall into. it’s amazing that a mere one new dinner a week can really make dinnertime seem exponentially more fun. =) hope you’ll join for february + report back on how it goes!

7 Ally Garner February 2, 2012 at 11:45 am

Soo much good stuff here. The rigatoni & quesadillas look amazing. What a fun way to spruce up the typical dinner menus we all make!

8 amy February 2, 2012 at 11:59 am

thanks so much, ally! i’ll definitely make sure to post both of those recipes on the blog within the next few weeks. both of them turned out delicious so i’m more than happy to share ‘em!

9 Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. February 2, 2012 at 2:44 pm

This looks great! Bookmarked

10 amy February 2, 2012 at 3:44 pm

thanks, alison!

11 Renee February 2, 2012 at 3:45 pm

It all looks so good! Very inspirational to try making something new each week. Keep it up because I am enjoying seeing all the posts and wondering what you will try next…

12 amy February 2, 2012 at 3:52 pm

thanks so much, renee! i’ve only been planning the meals a few days in advance, so i’m curious as to what i’ll try next, too. =) i’ll definitely report back!

13 Mollie February 2, 2012 at 6:12 pm

the quesadillas looks great! i would love to have the recipe

14 amy February 2, 2012 at 6:19 pm

they were sooo good, mollie – you’d love ‘em! i’ll make sure to get that recipe up next week for you + everyone else! =)

15 Ashley @ Kitchen Meets Girl February 2, 2012 at 7:38 pm

It all looks amazing–especially that rigatoni. And of course, I’m always on the lookout for new Mexican food recipes!

16 amy February 2, 2012 at 9:25 pm

thanks, ashley! i’ll definitely be posting both the rigatoni + the quesadillas soon – those were definitely the two top vote-getters. =)

17 megan @ culinary chops February 2, 2012 at 11:21 pm

congrats Amy! you definitely stick to a resolution better than anyone i know (including myself, hence why I don’t make them!). the spicy chicken quesadilla sounds absolutely delicious! If i had to pick one recipe I’d like to see you break apart, I would pick that one.

I can’t wait to see what the remaining 47 weeks look like!

18 amy February 3, 2012 at 7:39 am

i’m not normally good at keeping up resolutions, so i’m actually surprising myself by having kept this one up. it’s probably working because it’s far more ‘fun’ than the typical resolutions to work out more, lose weight, etc. =) i’ll definitely be blogging about the quesadillas soon – they were delicious + i can’t wait to share ‘em!

19 Jess February 3, 2012 at 8:02 am

Whooo hooo girl! Look at you getting all extra crafty in the kitchen! I don’t know if I could do a new meal each week, but this is definitely inspiring! Hope you and the hubs have a great weekend!

20 amy February 3, 2012 at 8:36 am

awww, thanks so much, jess! there are definitely weeks where the goal seems easier to achieve than others. =) i’m really hoping i can pull it off for the whole year — we’ll see if it happens. y’all have a great weekend, too!

21 Jackie @ Domestic Fits February 3, 2012 at 2:04 pm

Those quesadillas look super insane. I think I love them.

22 amy February 3, 2012 at 2:29 pm

ha! i bet you’d love ‘em if you tried ‘em – they tasted even better than they looked, especially when they were hot out of the skillet. yum!

23 Katia February 3, 2012 at 2:54 pm

Quesadillas?! Never heard about that, however, according the picture are to die for!

24 amy February 3, 2012 at 3:08 pm

ooh, do you not eat quesadillas in the UK? they’re absolutely delicious, so you’ll have to try ‘em soon!

25 natalie (the sweets life) February 3, 2012 at 3:29 pm

swooning over the sound of those quesadillas! I need to try that soon!

26 amy February 3, 2012 at 4:07 pm

they were soooo tasty, natalie. i’ll definitely put the updated, (heavily) adapted recipe on the blog next week. =) hope you love ‘em!

27 Julie at Burnt Carrots February 4, 2012 at 8:08 pm

I love this goal, because you are introducing me to so many different recipes! Those quesadillas look outstanding!

28 amy February 5, 2012 at 7:41 am

thanks so much, julie! the quesadillas have definitely been the most-requested recipe so far + i’m not surprised – they were amazing! i’ll put ‘em on the blog later this week. =)

leave a comment

Previous post:

Next post: