I was the first of my friends to get married, by a long shot. I was married at 23 (engaged at 21!). My next close girlfriend to get married was 9 years later. I was in my guy friend’s wedding before that, but because he’s a dude, I’m not counting it. Not only this, but several of my close college friends are single.
Let me tell you, hearing about the online dating scene these days is pretty crazy. As a lover of text messaging and social media, I’ve got to say…I don’t know that I could do it. The games, the mental game, the fronting that the online dating scene seems to demand is just…whew. It’s a lot!
In the beginning of marriage, I was the outcast. Married so young! Mark and I traveled around, following career opportunities…just spoiling our bulldog, living the DINK lifestyle. Looking back, I can now say that we never appreciated nor took advantage of this fact. But in the end, we’re both pretty regimented people that enjoy the simple things in life.
For me, one of those things is, duh…cooking. It has been fun watching those around me come to cooking – whether it be the need to feed a new boo or family, host co-workers or family for the holidays, or just learning to survive on something that doesn’t get delivered, picked-up, or thawed into something edible. For some of my friends, it took a pandemic to come around to the joys of cooking, but I’M NOT JUDGING!
I was recently asking my bestie, a great cook, what she had made recently that was worth mentioning. She said her mother-in-law requests these sloppy joes every time she’s in town. Which is often given that they’re new parents. She may be sloppy joed-out, but I thought they were delightful! A bit of a grown-up version that’s big on flavor. I totally dig the texture from the onion and pickle chips, too.
So perhaps this is a welcome to the wonderful world of making food – whatever that means to you! For others, like me, this time takes me back to comfort. Perhaps to childhood, even. Whether it be dinner at home or afar – camp, comes to mind – sloppy joes are basically an American staple.
- 1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp tomato paste
- 1 lb 93% lean ground beef
- 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 cup tomato sauce
- ½ cup ketchup
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 6 hamburger buns
- ½ red onion, thinly sliced
- 18 pickle chips, for serving
- In a large skillet over medium heat, heat oil. Once hot, add bell pepper and onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and tomato paste and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Add ground beef and cook until no longer pink, breaking up with a wooden spoon into crumbles, for about 6 minutes. Add the Worcestershire sauce, tomato sauce, ketchup, brown sugar, and apple cider vinegar. Stir well and bring to a simmer. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until thickened to desired consistency.
- Serve on hamburger buns with onions and pickle chips.
Weekly Menu: April 18th – 24th
- Saturday: carry-out or delivery – what? TBD! Hopefully Thai 😉
- Sunday: lobster tails, homemade mashed potatoes, salad
- Monday: Spanish Cod One Pot with steamed broccoli
- Tuesday: Potstickers, Spicy Thai Noodles, edamame
- Wednesday: carry-out or delivery – what? TBD!
- Thursday: Pesto Risotto with Shrimp and asparagus
- Friday: leftovers or homemade nachos