Dandy Dinners

When our daughter was young, she used to call restaurant food or any other special occasion meals “Dandy Dinners”.  The term stuck in our family and we often find ourselves declaring a dinner to be “dandy” when it turns out exceptionally yummy.  This week, despite our Whole 30, we managed to enjoy some very nice meals.  First, we got to enjoy an amazing steak at Peli Peli – a favorite special occasion place on Wednesday when I finally got the promotion at work I had been working toward.  Then on Friday, we celebrated my mom’s birthday at Pappadeaux, a cajun seafood restaurant, where we enjoyed a broiled redfish with shrimp & butternut squash.  Then on Sunday we took advantage of a Kroger sale on lobster and had lobster tails with asparagus.   It just goes to show that you can eat healthy and still really feel pampered.

Our meals for this week also turned out very well.  First on Saturday we smoked another pork shoulder to feed the crowd that came over to play tabletop games and hang out in the pool.  We served the pork with baked sweet potatoes, roasted cabbage & Brussels sprouts and garnished it with a homemade Whole 30 BBQ Sauce that turned out very tasty, even without the missing liquid smoke ingredient.  We went to several stores looking for a version that was Whole 30 compliant and struck out, so I did without, but ended up ordering one from Amazon for next time.  The pork shoulder came out very tender and juicy, and had a wonderful flavor from the applewood that E.J. used.

Then on Sunday with E.J.’s prep help we made our favorite TexMex Casserole, roasted 2 chickens in the Instant Pot, and tried a new recipe from Nom Nom Paleo.  Let me tell you, I was skeptical of this recipe because the ingredient list is a little on the strange side, but OMG is it good.

Spicy Tuna Cakes (NomNom Paleo)IMG_1822

I backed off on the spice since I didn’t know exactly what to expect, but this is easily one of my new favorite recipes.  The closest comparison I can come up with is it’s like a spicy crabcake, except with a tuna flavor.  I packaged it with roasted spiced cauliflour and have been adding avocado slices just to round it out.  Yum!!  I’m really liking these recipes that bake in muffin tins because they are so easy to grab and go for lunches or snacks.  I’m definitely going to have to get a set of silicone muffin trays at some point though, since the hardest part is getting the food out in one piece.

Happy Monday, everyone!

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