Tuesday, July 3, 2012

T.I.P.sters: Quick and Easy Summer Meals

We're pleased to welcome another Guest T.I.P.ster this week! Jillian from Hi! It's Jilly  will be sharing her ideas for Quick and Easy Summer Meals, along with the regular T.I.P.ster hosts, Allyson, Christy, and me

At our house, dinner time is a potentially stressful time.  The 1-year-old and 3-year-old who  napped wake up hungry.  The 5-year-old who doesn't nap is nearing bedtime.  Brian has worked such crazy hours this year that we only expect him for dinner about 1-2 nights a week.  When meal planning this summer, I look for recipes that meet a couple criteria. 

1) Everyone (or almost everyone) likes the dish.  Persuading a picky eater is not on my to-do list when I'm the only adult at home.  Our go-to meals are things like spaghetti, pancakes and eggs, grilled cheese, tacos, or creamy mac and cheese

2) The recipe is either quick to throw together in the late afternoon, can be prepared ahead of time in the morning, OR can be prepared as a family event. 

Summer Stromboli

One of our favorite summer (or year-round!) meals is stromboli.  I prepare the crust after lunch and let it rise on the counter all afternoon (though if you are short of time, it really only needs a short time to rise).  I got this crust recipe from my sister-in-law, Sarah, and we use it for everything from pizza to stromboli to breadsticks. 

Mix 2 cups of flour with 4 1/2 teaspoons (2 pkg.) of yeast.  Add 2 cups of warm water and 3 tablespoons of olive oil.  Mix well, then add 2 more cups of flour.  Add an additional 1-2 cups of flour until dough forms a soft, slightly sticky ball. Finish kneading with your hands.  Cover and let rise. 

Then I gather the troops and we assemble the strombolis together to our own personal liking.  When I know stromboli is on the menu plan, I tend to squirrel away bits of things in the freezer for filling: chopped green pepper leftover from salads, leftover ham, crumbles of bulk sausage...

Divide dough into 6-7 individual balls.  Liberally coat your work surface with flour and roll out each ball into a circle. Spread with sauce (thick or thin, depending on your preference).  Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and oregano.  Top with mozzarella cheese and desired toppingsFold over, sealing all the seams.  Move to a greased baking pan.  Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with garlic salt.  Bake for 12 minutes at 425 degrees. 

As always...take a moment to visit my fellow T.I.P.sters,
Allyson, Christy, and our guest, Jillian!
Coming Soon:
July 17: Taking Family Photos
August 7: Schooling Kids of Different Ages
August 21: Teaching Kids to Read

Want to write a guest post on one of these topics? 
Leave a comment or e-mail me and I'll tell you how to get started.

1 comment:

  1. We love simple dinners. too, especially in the summer. Your Stomboli looks like a fun family recipe. I hoping to try it once we start getting tomatoes from the garden (to make our own sauce).


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