While Ryan was away this past weekend, I occupied myself by watching World Cup soccer games and planning a week of Ryan's favorite dinners. His flight home on Saturday morning was inexplicably cancelled at the last minute. Fortunately, he was able to get another flight on Sunday, and spent Saturday at a baseball game and exploring the city with friends. So apart from another day apart and a re-shuffling of my meal schedule, everything worked out fine.
Sunday evening I baked Ryan one of his all-time favorite desserts - apple pie. I even splurged and bought some vanilla ice cream at the store. It's the first time we've bought ice cream since we've been down here since the store brand costs at least $6 for a half-gallon. If you want Breyer's, you'll easily pay twice that.
In the interest of full disclosure, I have to confess that I did not make the pie crust (sorry, Mom!). But I have a good excuse. I own exactly one glass pie plate that also doubles as an oven-safe casserole dish. And because I was using it for our Sunday night snack, it was cheaper to buy a frozen pie crust in a disposable pie plate than just the pie plate.
Another one of Ryan's favorite foods is homemade nacho dip. I layer refried beans, sour cream, salsa, cheddar cheese, and chopped green onions in an oven-safe dish. Normally I would add ground beef flavored with taco seasoning, but I didn't have any on hand this time. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, add a couple bottles of our new favorite soda, and you have the perfect welcome-home snack.
A couple weeks ago, Ryan asked if I could make a quiche sometime. When I was growing up, quiche was my absolute favorite meal. I requested Mom's homemade quiche every year for my birthday dinner. I'm surprised I hadn't thought to make it in the two years we've been married! So last night I attempted my first quiche. My glass pie plate was free, so I made the crust from scratch. However, when I get home to Greenville, I will be digging through my box of kitchen utensils for my pastry blender. Cutting butter into flour with two knives is not an easy task. The recipe called for a filling of spinach, red bell pepper, and cheddar cheese. I added mushrooms and onions (because onions make everything taste better!).
The quiche didn't last long. We finished it at lunch today. Tonight we are having another dinner favorite - Japanese hibachi: sauteed beef, zucchini, onions, and mushrooms with brown rice and authentic Japanese white sauce. But I'm most excited about a couple experiments later in the week. We'll see how they turn out. For now, I'm off to peruse the Internet for next week's meals!