Wow, it just hit me this morning that Barclay and I leave for Barcelona in eight days! So soon!!
Which means that all of the things on my to-do list that need to be checked off before the trip need to happen…oh right…so soon. ?
The two items at the top of our wedding planning list happen to be two of the biggest ones — booking a venue and ordering a dress. Oh my goodness, guys, I had no idea that the world of booking wedding venues could be so complicated! Or so full of hidden up-charges. It seems that every place we’ve visited has been wonderfully within our budget, until — oh yes! — they mention that they only work with the most expensive florist in town. Or — oh yes! — chair and table rental and turnover fees. Or — the biggest bomb — catered alcohol prices. Yeesh, I’m pretty sure I could whip up some top-shelf killer cocktails for the fees some of these people charge for the cheapest box wine. Not my style.
Thankfully, dress shopping has been a much more encouraging experience. My little sis flew in from Chicago this past weekend, and joined me and my mom and my future mother-in-law for a day of playing dress-up all over town. But unfortunately, a huge ice storm also decided to fly into town over the weekend, and most of the stores we wanted to visit were either understaffed or closing early because of the weather. So there’s still one more store — owned by a friend of a friend — that I really want to visit and check out before making a final decision. But, I did find two dresses on Saturday that I completely loved and would be totally happy going with. Both weren’t at all what I thought I wanted going in, but — as seems to happen with many of my friends who have shopped for wedding dresses — both felt right and made me feel so happy and pretty. And once they pinned that veil on for the first time, I couldn’t contain the happy tears. It was the first time I really felt like a bride. ? So surreal, but so good.
Anyway, clearly there are some fun new things on the to-do list lately. But this wedding planning gig is starting to take more time on nights and weekends (and venue scouting trips during the days) lately. So I’ve been trying to get on the ball with some more proactive meal planning to make life a little simpler. And — you guys — I’ve finally jumped onto the sheet pan dinner train. And I’m loving it.
Especially this recipe.
If you follow my Instagram stories, it’s no secret that I make a lot of stir-fries. ??
And why not?
They’re so easy. Just grab some veggies, maybe a protein, and some sort of sauce or seasoning, cook it all up together in a saute pan, and voila! Couldn’t be easier!
Ohhhhh, but yes it could.
Turns out that if you grab some veggies, maybe a protein, and some sort of sauce or seasoning, then spread them all out on a sheet pan and pop ’em in the oven, that brilliant oven of yours will do all of the work for you. And it will save you some time babysitting the stove. And you can use less oil and get those yummy roasted edges on all of your veggies. Brilliant.
This recipe was one of my latest faves. I just marinated some chicken in a simple sesame-soy marinade…
…while I chopped up a bunch of veggies. (Feel free to use whatever you have on hand! Just be sure that they will roast well, and that you cut them into evenly-sized pieces that will cook in about the same time.) Then I stirred everything together (with the marinade)…
…turned the mixture out on a sheet pan, then roasted it for about 15 minutes or so (stirring once halfway through) until the chicken was cooked through…
…and then this gorgeous pan of dinner was ready to enjoy!!
I served some of it for lunch over brown rice…
…but then dished up the rest into little storage containers for easy lunches for the week.
So simple. So flavorful. So healthy. And so good.
Perfect for my week ahead, and hopefully, perfect for yours as well. Enjoy, friends!
optional: thinly-sliced green onions and toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
Stir-Fry Sauce Ingredients:
1/3 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons avocado oil or olive oil
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
How To Make The Stir-Fry:
Heat oven to 425°F. Grease a large baking sheet with cooking spray, and set aside.
Combine the chicken and stir-fry sauce together in a large bowl, and toss until combined. Refrigerate and let the chicken marinate while you chop the remaining veggies. (Or you can let it marinate in the refrigerator in a sealed container for up to 8 hours in advance for maximum flavor.)
Once the veggies are ready, add them to the bowl with the chicken, and toss until the veggies are evenly coated with the sauce.
Turn the chicken and veggies out onto the prepared baking sheet, and spread them out so that they are in an even layer.
Bake for 14-16 minutes, stirring once halfway through, until the chicken is cooked through and no longer pink inside.