Gruyere Broccoli Bake


What better combination is there than broccoli and cheese? And when you pair broccoli with the creamy, silky gruyere cheese, you have a simply divine side dish. The gruyere in this dish melts into a creamy sauce that coats the broccoli and gives it tons of flavor. And the toasted bread crumbs on top add an extra crunch. Paired along side baked chicken, grilled steak or breaded pork chops, this broccoli side will complete any meal. You will not be disappointed. Make the first bite count!




Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 4

2 bunches of broccoli, stalks removed and roughly chopped (about 4-6 cups)
2 Tablespoons water
3 Tablespoons butter, divided
2 Tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
1 cup (4 ounces) gruyere, grated
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs

1. Preheat oven to 375. Place broccoli in a microwave safe dish and add water. Cover with a lid or plastic wrap and microwave on high 3-4 minutes to steam cook.

2. Melt 2 Tablespoons butter in a medium pot over medium heat. Add the flour. Stir and cook for about 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk and simmer until slightly thickened, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 cup cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Stir until cheese is melted. Add the broccoli to the pot and stir to coat. Transfer broccoli mixture to a 2- or 3-quart baking dish.

3. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top of the broccoli. Melt remaining Tablespoon of butter in a small saucepan over medium low heat. Add the bread crumbs and toss to coat in the butter. Sprinkle the bread crumbs on top.

4. Bake 35-40 minutes or until bubbly and bread crumbs are golden brown. Let sit for 5-10 minutes before serving.


What’s for Dinner? Week of September 22, 2013


Fall is in the air!  Our pool is officially closed and that always makes me feel a little sad, as if the summer closes with it.  But then I went shopping for mums and decorated our front porch for fall, and it reminded me how much I also love the autumn season.  The crisp cool air, football, pumpkins and sweatpants.  All great things that I am looking forward to this year.  Although fall is in the air, the weather in our area has been a beautiful 75 degrees, so we are certainly still making use of our grill.  As you pull up your annuals and put away your lawn furniture, don’t forget to still utilize that grill as long as it’s nice.

When choosing the menu for this week I really tried to focus on having different types of protein for each meal.  Don’t get me wrong, chicken is very versatile and is delicious many different ways, however sometimes chicken over and over again gets a little old.  I purposely tried to mix it up this week.  There is everything from fish to pasta to steak to, of course, chicken.  You have to include good ‘ol chicken at least one night a week 🙂   So create your menu, make your shopping list and do that grocery trip once for the week.  Enjoy the meals this week, as well as all the time with the family sitting around the dinner table.  And don’t forget to the make the first bite count!


MondayTilapia with Basil Bread Crumbs | Roasted Asparagus | Parmesan Basil Orzo

TuesdayLobster Ravioli in Tomato Cream Sauce | Salad

WednesdayGrilled Steak | Twice Baked Potatoes with Broccoli

ThursdayApricot Chicken | Roasted Parmesan Broccoli | Rice


What’s for Dinner? Week of September 15, 2013


Although school has started and the weather has started to change, it is still sunny and warm enough to be grilling. My husband is so great on the grill that we take advantage of cooking on it for as long as possible. As a result, two of the meals this week are grilling meals. It has been busier since school has started so these meals are certainly not your fancy entertaining dishes, but they sure are tasty and that’s all that matters.

Since going out to eat or picking up take out can get pricey, our date night became our leftover night. We each get to make a plate of what we like, have a glass of wine and enjoy each other’s company. The clean up is easy because nothing was prepared that night and it certainly saves us money. A little tip on reheating leftovers: use the oven, or better yet, a toaster oven if you own one. Using the microwave takes moisture out of the food but the oven or toaster oven keeps that moisture. Just use a low heat.

So plan your menu, make a shopping list of all the ingredients you will need, and head to the grocery store one time this week. You will enjoy not having to return again and again during the week, as well as enjoy spending less money. Taking ten minutes to plan your meals and shopping list will save you time and money in the end. Spend that time with your family around the dinner table and learn more about each other. Make the first bite count!


MondayBBQ Cheeseburgers with Onion Rings

TuesdayHoney Mustard Chicken | Broccoli Cheddar Orzo

WednesdayGrilled Sausage and Waffle Sweet Potato Fries

ThursdayChicken Caesar Salads

FridayLeftovers/Date Night!

School has officially Started!!!

School has officially started (just finished the first full week with students), and it has been crazy. Our state has adopted the new Common Core Standards and our district is busy enforcing all this extra paperwork and goal writing on us. So us teachers are responsible for all of that on top of getting our classrooms and lesson plans ready to actually be able to teach the young minds. So it really has been crazy.

But enough about work, on to the good stuff: menus! I have still been cooking up dinners weekly and trying to take pictures so I’m hoping to get back on track now that the anxiety and stress of the first week has passed. By the end of the weekend I will have another menu ready for your preparing pleasure. Be ready to make the most of that grill before it gets too cold, because there are some delicious recipes coming your way straight from the grill. Make the first bite count!