Mid-September Menu + Spicy Coconut Noodles

Another tasty week in the books. Let’s discuss! (Also, someone got new markers!! Me.)

dinners written out on a white board

*This post contains affiliate links to some of my favorite cookbooks. If you click a link and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission.

mid-September dinners

What we made last week, with notes:

Sunday, 9/10/22: Pizza and salad! I mentioned last week I’m on a quest for a new pizza dough and, to that end, I tried the NYT Cooking highly-rated pizza dough recipe this week. It was good — my personal favorite for homemade dough so far. What I’m really looking for in homemade dough is for it to emerge from the oven with big, pillowy bubbles. This one had the beginning of one bubble. So, ya know… it’s something. I’m still searching and Joey still prefers store-bought Publix dough.

pepperoni pizza on a cutting board

Sunday 9/11/22: Spicy Coconut Noodles. I started out with Melissa Clark’s recipe for Gingery Coconut Noodles with Shrimp and Greens from her new cookbook “Dinner In One”, and ended up with the Spicy Coconut Noodles recipe shared below, which uses chicken breasts, a hot little gochujang/sambal olek marinade, a bunch of chopped green beans, and subs in pasta for rice noodles. We looooved this and I have to think it’s due to that mound of spaghetti being cooked in a spicy coconut milk bath. Fab!

Monday 9/12/22: Kimchi Fried Rice. A hit! And this recipe also came from that same Melissa Clark book. I made this for the crew at my friend’s inn and my only regret was not being able to include the fluffy scrambled egg that Joey and I got to enjoy with it (scrambled eggs + make-ahead meals for large groups just don’t mix in my mind).

Tuesday 9/13/22: Pizza again! Nope, we did not follow the plan. But, Joey and I did do something this day that’s been 10 years in the making: we took our boat over to our local Indian spot, Masala Bay, for lunch and ate all the things. Ah-mazing.

dishes of Indian food laid out on a table

Wednesday 8/13/22: leftover Indian food!

Thursday 8/14/22: Dinner at mom and dad’s. My mom made paella with shrimp, scallops, mussels, and chorizo and WHY do I not ever make paella?? It was so good.

Friday 8/15/22: Trader Joe’s Cacio e Pepe Ravioli with Cajun Alfredo Sauce. We’d planned on eating leftovers but had this instead and it tasted like canned spaghettios, which to me, is a good thing.

This week’s baking efforts: Brown Butter Brown Sugar Cookies. I make these preeeetttty often — they’re the just-right combo of nutty brown butter and molassas-y brown sugar and the texture is perfectly crinkly-soft. The recipe is from  America’s Test Kitchen’s “New Essentials Cookbook”, although I think they’re just called Brown Sugar Cookies in there. Why they don’t call out the brown-butteriness in the title, I’ll never know.

cookies on a cooling rack

Now on to this week’s recipe. It’s a goody❤️

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Mid-September Menu + Spicy Coconut Noodles

noodles with lots of herbs and spinach in a skillet with tongs

This recipe is a twist on the Gingery Coconut Noodles from Melissa Clark’s cookbook “Dinner In One”, using spaghetti noodles, chicken breasts, a spicy marinade, and green beans.

  • Author: Megan
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: dinner

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced into thin pieces, about 1” long
  • 1/3 C gochujang sauce
  • 2 TBS sambal olek
  • 3 TBS coconut oil
  • 6 scallions, thinly sliced (keep the white and green parts separated)
  • 2 jalapenos, thinly sliced (divided)
  • 1/2 lb green beans, chopped into 1/3“-long pieces
  • 4 cloves of garlic, grated on a microplane
  • 1” of fresh ginger, grated on a microplane
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 2 C chicken stock
  • 1/4 lb spaghetti
  • 2 TBS fish sauce
  • 1 5 oz container of spinach, roughly chopped
  • juice of 23 limes
  • 1 C chopped fresh herbs (I used cilantro, basil, and mint)
  • chopped peanuts, for garnish

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, combine the sliced chicken breast, gochujang sauce, and sambal olek, toss to coat, and let sit for 20-30 minutes.
  2. In a skillet over medium-high heat, heat the coconut oil, then add the marinated chicken breast. Cook, stirring once or twice until the chicken is seared on the outside – about 7 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside. Do not wipe out the pan.
  3. Melt the remaining TBS of coconut oil in the same skillet, then add the scallion whites, half the jalapeno, and the green beans. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and the beans turn bright green – 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, for 1 more minute.
  4. Increase heat to high and dd the coconut and chicken stock to the pan, stirring to combine. Once the mixture comes to a boil, add the spaghetti. Cook, stirring occasionally until pasta is al dente – about 9 minutes. Add more stock if the mixture gets too dry.
  5. Stir in the fish sauce, the reserved cooked chicken, and the spinach, and cook until the spinach is just wilted. Taste and season with as much of the lime juice as you like, and/or add more fish sauce or a pinch of salt if it needs it.
  6. Sprinkle remaining sliced jalapenos, chopped herbs, and peanuts over top and serve.

Notes

*The cooking times and nutritional info noted in this recipe are approximate.

Keywords: easy chicken breast recipe, coconut milk noodles, spicy noodle recipe

Late August Menu + Crispy Pecorino Romano Chicken Sandwiches

Shall we talk about what we’re eating? Here’s what went on at our house this week:

dinners written out on a white board

Usually we deviate from the white board slightly but, this week, I’m glad to say it all went pretty much as planned. Let’s discuss the juicy details, and keep scrolling for how I finally perfected the Crispy Pecorino Romano Chicken Sandwich pictured at the top, which has been haunting my dreams.

*This post contains affiliate links to some of my favorite cookbooks. If you click a link and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission.

late august dinners

What we made this week, with notes:

Saturday 8/13/22: Fig, caramelized onion, and bacon pizza. Come on. Do I need to say this? It was obviously amazing. The recipe came from NYT Cooking except I used fresh figs we grilled last week and added shredded fontina and goat cheese to the blue cheese called for in the recipe. More is more when we’re talking cheese.

Caramelized Onion, Fig, and Bacon Pizza on a cutting board

Sunday 8/14/22: Beef phyllo pie with salad. Wowzers… this was even better than expected and I expected a lot — it is super-seasoned meat wrapped in flaky pastry, after all. I’d originally planned to add some sauteed zucchini and bell peppers but then thought, “Calm down here, just try it the way the recipe was written.” Very glad I did — this phyllo pie needs nothing but the beef, the feta, the fresh herbs on top, and maybe a little lemony yogurt sauce on the side. The recipe came from the cookbook “To the Last Bite” by Alexis deBoschnek . Except, her recipe used lamb. Lolz, I guess I didn’t follow the recipe 100% but whatever — it was still amazing and will be making it again!

Monday 8/15/22: Chicken mole with cilantro-lime beans and rice. A repeat recipe in our house from America’s Test Kitchen’s book, “Dinner Illustrated: 175 Meals Ready in 1 Hour or Less”. It sounds wrong, but this mole sauce can be made in like… 10 minutes. And it’s reeeeeaaalllly good. This time, I used the leftover chile-peanut salsa from last week’s skirt steak tacos in the mole and it worked great!

Tuesday 8/16/22: Crispy Pecorino Romano Chicken Sandwiches! Recipe below! Proud to say, on what ended up being the third try, I finally nailed the right combo of ingredients (following last Sunday’s fried chicken cutlet disappointment). The elements that righted all my past sandwich wrongs: a toasted brioche bun (not a kaiser roll!), my standby Crispy Pecorino Romano Chicken recipe (crackly and crispy, not greasy like previous attempts), and homemade quick pickles for a much-needed tangy crunch. Hallelujah.

Wednesday 8/17/22: –leftovers–

Thursday 8/18/22: Smoked ribs with cola BBQ sauce, roasted sweet potatoes, and salad. Fun times and a good bottle of shiraz were had on Thursday. This cola BBQ sauce is where it’s at. The recipe came from Toni Tipton-Martin’s cookbook ,”Jubilee” and is the sauce she pairs with the orange-glazed wings shared last week. Loved! I mean… look at these freaking ribs:

glazed ribs on aluminum foil

Friday 8/19/22: Pasta with white vodka sauce, garlic bread, and salad. Heck yeah! A deceptively simple recipe that tastes like the best alfredo sauce you’ve ever had but better, from my all-time favorite book, “Italian American: Red Sauce Classics and New Essentials: A Cookbook” by Angie Rito and Scott Tacinelli. I bought this book b/c Bon Appetit wrote about its mussels stuffed with pepperoni rice recipe and I thought, “These people get me.” I’m quickly cooking my way through the whole thing and am very glad I tried this buttery, creamy, onion-and-shallot-laced pasta. It’s fab. No photo b/c we ate it too fast.

What a tasty week! Now please enjoy this crispy chicken sammy:

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Crispy Pecorino Romano Chicken Sandwiches

crispy chicken sandwiches on parchment paper

Thinly sliced chicken coated in a mixture of grated pecorino romano cheese and breadcrumbs and pan-fried, topped with shredded cabbage, parmesan, and quick pickles, sandwiched between toasted brioche with a generous layer of lemony mayo!

  • Author: Megan
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: dinner, lunch

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 English cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp salt, plus more for seasoning the mayo
  • 1/2 C white vinegar
  • 1/3 C sugar
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 C mayo
  • 1/4 C greek yogurt
  • a squeeze of lemon juice
  • Crispy Pecorino Romano Chicken
  • shaved Parmesan
  • shredded napa or savoy cabbage
  • 4 brioche burger buns, toasted

Instructions

  1. Make the quick pickles: in a large bowl, toss thinly sliced cucumber in a teaspoon of salt and let sit for an hour in the fridge with a heavy bowl on top to help press the liquid out. Drain off the liquid, stir together the vinegar and sugar until the sugar has dissolved (or mostly dissolved) then toss the cucumber slices in the vinegar mixture, season with pepper, and refrigerate until ready to eat.
  2. Make the lemon mayo: stir together the mayo, yogurt, and lemon juice. Season with salt, to taste.
  3. Assemble the sandwiches in this order: toasted brioche bun, lemon mayo, 1 piece of Crispy Pecorino Romano Chicken (slice in half and stack it to make it fit), shaved Parmesan, quick pickles, shredded cabbage, more lemon mayo on the top half of the toasted brioche bun.

Notes

*The cooking times and nutritional info noted in this recipe are approximate.

Keywords: crispy chicken sandwich, pecorino romano chicken, chicken breast recipe