Sweet Potato Mac and CheeseHi everybody! It’s Courtney again. The Courtney who usually sends in sweet, fatty, overly decadent posts to guest. I do that because those are the dishes I get most excited about, but they aren’t what I eat most of the time – even 20% of the time. Most of what I eat is full of veggies and plant-based protein sources. This dish, though. This combines everything I love about a rich, winter casserole (it’s been down to the single digits here in Boston and we need things to stick to the ribs!) and features more veggies than you can shake a stick at. Even better, nearly everything is local. The Boston Public Market – a year-round indoor farmer’s market – opened this year and is right on my commute home. Everything at the market must come from within 100 miles of Boston. This has been wonderful for my life but terrible for my wallet.

Um, hi October. Nice to see ya. When did you decide to show up? Because I definitely thought you were still a couple months away. It feels like we just moved to Tacoma, but the leaves on the ground have been telling us otherwise, for the last couple weeks. It’s been absolutely beautiful here – warm(ish), crisp days, cool clear evenings. We’ve been enjoying time outside and have even had to turn the heat on a couple times, in our cars at least. It’s absolutely wonderful to be in early October and not having to worry about being too warm, but rather being too chilly. A total reverse of our normal situation!

It’s late on Sunday night (90% of you won’t read this until Monday) and I’m kicked back in bed with the monsters, while Will watches some man-show out in the den. We’ve spent the entire day in the kitchen, aside from a yoga class, and we’re beat. Because of all the new recipes we churned out today (5, but 1 failed), I feel motivated to knock out at least one post tonight since I’ve now got over 20 in the backlog (oooooooooops). I figure before I share anything else new from our new place (of course we’re already making NEW recipes, duh), it’s best to wrap up the last of the pre-Tacoma recipes. And this one is a recipe that I should not have been holding out on you with. Ohmigosh this is heaven. One of Will’s best concoctions, ever. I can’t believe I’ve been so rude to withhold it from you this long.

Today it actually got hot in Tacoma. This is surprising because we thought we wouldn’t shed our southeastern upbringings so soon, where 100+ degrees and humidity was the only thing that could qualify as truly “hot.” But today it hit 90 and we are only slightly less whiney than everyone else around here about the whole thing. We did add to our own complaining though, by talking a power walk at lunch, where Will actively tried to walk in the shade to protect his pale skin. But at least our offices are air conditioned, unlike our apartment (which feels fine, by the way). The last time we came close to feeling a temp this warm was…….

Hiiiiiiiiiii again. We’re busy being not busy and it’s been quite a lovely change of pace. We did finally manage to go get my Nutella milkshake  last Friday and went to the zoo on Saturday with just about everyone else in the Tacoma area. We saw baby clouded leopard cubs and lots of other animals, as the zoo celebrated tiger weekend! I finally got around to trying out a yoga studio last night and today we plan to hit up the gym at our university before heading home. You could say we’re settling in nicely, though we don’t really know what to do with ourselves since we have 0 regular commitments once we leave the office, which is highly unusual for us. We also have a TV that came with the apartment, so we’ve been binge-watching TV shows since it’s been…four years since we’ve had a TV? Something like that. We’ve been playing catch-up. But you’re not here to read about our settling in. You’re here to learn about Hummus Crusted Chicken Tenders (yummmmm) and perhaps to hear more about our cross-country expedition! And if you’re not here for either of those….well, can’t help ya much.

Greetings from the West Coast! Approximately 1.2 trillion things have happened in our lives since our last post, so please forgive the unfocused oversharing in this post and the ones to come in the next few days. Since we’ve last posted:

  • Will graduated from W&M for the second time, with his master’s this go-round
  • We spent three weeks in South Africa on a study abroad opportunity/vacation
  • Will continued interviewing for jobs all over the country like the badass he is
  • Will got offered a position at a university in Tacoma and accepted
  • Will’s boss sent Megan’s resume around the school and Megan subsequently got interviewed/hired at the same university
  • We packed up our lives and left Virginia on July 1, taking a 10-day road trip across the country (with the cats) and stopped to see several friends along the way
  • We moved in to our new apartment in Tacoma and have spent a week learning our way about and finding all sorts of cool things to do in our new city
  • We have ogled Mount Rainier from afar on the days it unearths itself from the clouds
  • And tomorrow we begin work at our new jobs

Boeuf Bourguignon

Posted by Megan | Beef, Dinner

I hope most of you caught our Facebook note about going MIA and the upcoming sporadic spring schedule of the CWW team. Between a thesis, traveling, and work events, we’re a little bit swamped. Not to mention a few other top-secret endeavors going on behind the scenes that are not consumable for blog-readers (yet)! So bear with us as we work our way through April and May, with an upcoming hiatus in May/June as we spend three weeks traveling in South Africa!! We’re getting really excited for our short-term study abroad trip and I’m quite proud of all the work Will has put into planning and organizing it with his professor. At this point, I’m just ready to fly over there and enjoy all that hard work!

There are few things I love more than a simple recipe. I mean sure, it’s fun to watch Will create something in the kitchen that has approximately 1,500 steps to it and takes three hours. But realistically, who has time for that?? If it wasn’t for Will and his interest in cooking, I can guarantee you this little blog wouldn’t exist because I wouldn’t be committing to the majority of recipes he makes! But this recipe is one that’s for everyone – those who like to cook, those who don’t and those who can’t. It includes SIX ingredients total and two preparation tools. Don’t have a food processor? Use a blender. Problem solved. But other than needing something to create the paste, this recipe is about as easy as it can get. And that’s what makes it so wonderful! I promise that anyone can make this. And even better? You can eat it by itself or with some plain pasta noodles. Either is good and quite honestly, this shrimp can hold its own as far as flavor goes. So treat yourself to some fresh shrimp from the counter (not frozen) and enjoy this easy, amazing recipe!

What a busy week it is going to be, so I wanted to make sure to get something up on the blog before I fell off the face of the earth for a few days! This is the perfect recipe to share because it’s got all the classic CWW traits – international, creative, and only slightly challenging (because of coordination, not the food itself). This recipe is courtesy of the Russian cookbook that Courtney sent us for Christmas, which was of course an exciting surprise. This is the first Russian recipe we’ve tried, since making our borscht. While I visited Russia many years ago, I really enjoyed the food, much to my surprise. So we’re very happy that Courtney found this cookbook, which has a whole variety of exciting recipes to try that seem undeniably, classically Russian. There’s lots of beets, potatoes and dill in our future, each time we crack this book open. So keep an open mind, ignore political issues, and try this straightforward and mouthwatering fish dish!

Beef Korma

Posted by Megan | Beef, Dinner, Global, Indian

Has anyone noticed anything different on the blog lately? Recipes keep coming, writing remains about the same, but what about…the pictures? I hope you all have noticed an improvement because Will did something amazing for me for Christmas this year. He built me a special photo light, found here. I found this light on one of my favorite blogs, Pinch of Yum, in their food photography section. But instead of spending some buckaroo’s on a light, we went the DIY option instead. And because of this little light powerhouse, you may have noticed the posts about mussels, tagine, miso-tahini noodles with tofu might have looked a bit improved! After taking some time to edit photos last weekend, I’m super stoked about the improved quality we can share with you in how our food looks! Now, the only flaw in this is now our older photos look less good and we need to remake about 440 recipes. Riiiiiiiiiight. We’ll get on that ASAP.