This week was full of new recipes and boy oh boy were they ever a hit! I knew we would be hosting guests on the weekend, so I saved up my learning project meal, to hopefully shine in front of a crowd. This week I incorporated not one, not two but THREE recipes into my project. I chose to make ribs with scalloped potatoes, garlic toast and salad. I have to be honest, the salad was not a creation of my own, as it is hard to beat the salad kits available now days. Although I have said I’m trying to make meals from real ingredients, I do find the salad kits a nice quick way to add veggies to a meal and most that I have found are actually not terrible ingredients. I digress, let’s get chatting about the parts of the meal I did make!
This week I hit google hard, with searches like, “big meals to impress a crowd”, “crowd pleasing dinners”, “BBQ favourites”. First I found my recipe for ribs and from there I picked the sides which I thought would go best. I love potatoes of all kinds so it was natural to toss those in there and of course garlic toast fits in so well, that it would be a shame to cut it from the meal. I knew I would have my work cut out for me because this was going to be my day for guests to try a new meal of mine. The timing of this meal was certainly something for me to really consider as well, as the ribs needed to cook for a total of two and a half hours in the oven and the scalloped potatoes would also need the oven. I do have a convection feature on my oven but the temperatures were different between the potatoes and the ribs so I decided to use a plug-in roaster oven for the scalloped potatoes, that I’ve had stashed away in the cupboards.
The ribs appeared to be the easiest recipe and also the part that would take the longest, so I got together the ingredients and began to make the rub. Once the ribs were prepped and in the oven, I got to work on making the scalloped potatoes. Making the scalloped potatoes was quite tedious but having a video from the recipes blog page to work from was nice; especially when it came to making the sauce and getting the consistency just right. Once I had the scalloped potatoes in their tray and in the oven, I began to make my garlic butter for the garlic toast. For this, I actually combined two recipes, picking out the things I like best about both of them to make one. Once mixed up, I spread the garlic cheese butter on the fresh loaf of French bread I picked up from our local grocery store and waited until the ribs were done in the oven to toss the garlic cheese bread in.
The timing of my meal worked out quite well and the trusty portable oven did too, my biggest worries were behind me. Our guests absolutely loved the meal, so much so, I had them asking for the recipes. I’ve always been the type to try my best to look on the bright side and I have to be honest, although the covid virus was a horrible thing in many ways, it did seem to really impact the online learning world. Going back to school as an adult, while still trying to maintain my current career, while I finish school, was not the easiest decision but learning online has made it a significantly different experience than it would have been otherwise. Now a few years later, I’m no stranger to learning online and it is something I have actually really come to enjoy. When it came to picking recipes for this meal, I was easily able to surf a number of recipes until I found something that sparked my interest and had the ingredients which sounded the best to me. So far throughout this journey, there has been no need for costly cookbooks where there is only a handful of recipes I love but a plethora of whatever I want, right there for free, on the internet.
I have now changed my iPhone screen to stay on until I turn it off for the ease of using it for the recipe while I cook. It is also quite convenient that I can Google quick “how to’s” (like removing the membrane from the ribs) before cooking or while I’m cooking. I have found that I have been doing a lot of screen shots for recipes, especially with using multiple recipes just to make it easier to switch back and forth while making a meal. It would be nice to have a better place to save these recipes so I can easily access them in the future; if anyone has an idea, please reach out and comment below!