Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Deadra: New Routine....

Okay it's not so new, but it's more that I'm implementing it officially.  It's call, eat what's in the fridge or starve.  Well it's not that harsh, but that's the general idea.
We all know I love to cook, love it.  The down fall is that I always have left overs, and I have a tiny horribly engineered fridge, which means stuff gets shoved to the back, where is dies a slow, chilly death.  Then I throw it out, and I hate to waste food.  Also there is the cursing, the cursing when I try to add more things to the already overflowing fridge.  So to assuage this I've started having more left over nights.  Which, who knew, makes dinner time so easy.  I don't even fancy them up, I let everyone choose what they want, and they're happy!  Bonus!  And my fridge gets cleaned out!
I wonder how I didn't really clue on to this before, but it's working well.  I still plan my meals two weeks out for the most part, but I work in left over nights a couple times a week.
This domestic diva thing, sometimes just gets easier and easier.  Up next, hunting down and killing all of the dust bunnies that have accumulated.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Tiffanie: this week's menu

It's a little cool and rainy today, which is shaping my menu plans for the week...

My plans include:

  • breakfast dinner of pancakes, tempeh white bean sausage patties, roasted potatoes and onions with herbs
  • lentil-rice-caramelized onions with spiced pita crisps. Slightly addicted to this dish... green salad on the side.
  • brown curry from a box, with lots of leftover veggies in it... tofu, carrots, turnips, onions, zucchini. Over rice, with salad.
  • potato mushroom tofu stew with miso gravy, over rice or pasta.
Just made a nice banana bread with lots of coconut oil. Not sure what other desserts are in the works, maybe cookies. Also going to make more yogurt-banana-blueberry popsicles.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Tiffanie: this week's menu

I'm even more behind than usual, since we went to the Maker Faire on Sunday and I didn't do any meal planning or shopping. Fortunately we've got leftovers, and plenty of produce left over from the CSA box. The bean and escarole soup was delicious, and is now all gone (two dinners, one lunch). We ended up making pizza at home on Saturday, with homemade fresh pesto. I also made a tofu ricotta, which I liked more than the mozzarella the kids ate. Way more flavor and texture.

My plans include:

  • millet and spinach polenta, with sun dried tomato pesto. Sauteed fava beans with garlic. Roasted sweet potato fries and summer squash.
  • spaghetti with kale and vegan sausage. Kids will manage to get cheese on their pasta. Green salad with radishes. Might add fava beans to the pasta, too. I've got a lot of fava beans.
On Wednesday I'll get another CSA box and work off of that... at the moment I'm not coming up with much. Honestly, those two bullet points are three dinners, which takes me to Thursday-sweet-potato-hash-night. And Friday we're going out to dinner for a date night. So I guess I can be lazy this week. :-)

Today we made blueberry-banana-honey-yogurt popsicles, and I also made thyme-honey-whiskey-iced-tea. We're going to try out both this afternoon (well, the kids don't get the whiskey tea). I should also make more energy balls, to fatten up my kids.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Bernadette: Meal Plan

I haven't been good at making myself meal plan so I finally decided to try out a meal planning service. I found one called Cook Smarts, which had a free email subscription at the time that I joined but which has now switched to a paid subscription service. I continued with it because the recipes are pretty simple and using the meal plan helps get me out of my cooking rut. There's always one vegetarian meal and the dinner is usually seems pretty balanced. Each recipe also lets you know what you can make ahead of time, very handy for when I just have a few minutes to do something useful before one of the kids need me. If I don't like the sound of a dish for a particular day, I just look for another recipe from a different source but at least there are a few meals for the week already planned.

This week, I've made the following:

Stuffed Peppers with Quinoa, Black Beans, and Corn with a side of Roasted Asparagus - This dish was much easier to make than I expected and everyone liked it. The 4 year old helped me assemble the peppers and sprinkle cheese on top and was so excited to pick her pepper. She tried to eat it but mostly ate the cheese. I think she wasn't sure about the quinoa though and really doesn't like beans. She loved the corn though.
Baked Chicken Cordon Bleu and Roasted Broccoli - This one got rave reviews from the husband and we even served it to a dinner guest. I liked it because I got to pound the chicken flat although the recipe involved a little more work than I like - it can be inconvenient to watch 2 kids and handle raw meat at the same time. I didn't think the 4 year old would eat it so I broke my rule about trying to get the 4 year old to eat what we eat and made chicken tenders on the side. Making the chicken tenders was easy since all the ingredients were already there and it just meant not rolling up the chicken with the cheese and prosciutto.

I liked both dishes enough that I'd be happy to make either of them again.

Tomorrow is Honey Lime Salmon with Quinoa and over the weekend we'll probably be using our new grill which means sausages and corn and other veggies.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Tiffanie: this week's menu

This week's plans:

  • leftovers of a lentil rice caramelized onion dish, with spiced pita crisps. Steamed artichokes.
  • tofu kale scramble with chipotle raspberry sauce, yellow rice.
  • broccoli tofu stir fry with rice
  • curried split pea soup, green salad
  • white bean escarole soup (slow cooker; got a huge head of escarole in the CSA box today). Must make bread to go with this!
My CSA box has spinach, basil, summer squash, and beets, which I have no immediate plans for. The beets I may cook tonight for a salad. The squash usually gets roasted, since the boy loves roasted squash. I might turn the spinach into millet spinach polenta, and use the basil for a sun dried tomato pesto to smother it in...

The energy balls last week were quickly eaten, so I shall make them again. I also made a banana bread, using coconut oil. Devoured! 

I'm snack parent at preschool tomorrow, and it's my last one ever, so I'm trying to do it in style. For the kids: plain yogurt mixed with blueberries, homemade granola, bananas. The day is themed as Mixing Day, so this will give them a chance to mix it all together. For the adults, a many-layered dip of refried beans, guac, salsa, scallions, cheese, and sour cream with chips, and a strawberry cobbler. I'm going to make the granola at home, and assemble the cobbler at home, then bake the cobbler at school. The dip is easy enough to assemble at school. Ugh, just realized the cobbler recipe has almond meal in it, so I'll have to improvise that out. Maybe more oats and flour...

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Tiffanie: this week's menu

Cool weather is back! I'm relieved. :-) The house guests leave on Tuesday morning, so it's back to regular menu planning.

My plans include:

  • a black bean chili with lots of tomatoes, peppers, and corn. It's very colorful and includes salsa. I used to make this weekly about a decade ago, so it's time to bring it back. Cornbread and collard greens to complete it.
  • A spinach tomato curry, with rice and a green salad.
  • A curried split pea soup, with coconut jasmine rice, pita bread, and steamed artichokes.
  • sweet potato hash with greens and mushrooms, for my eat-alone night.
  • still haven't made those energy balls, so that's still planned, plus a strawberry breakfast cobbler and a lemon coconut bundt cake.
I cook something vegan and gluten-free for a friend each week, and I think this week I'll make him a spicy chana masala (chickpea curry), and a warm lentil salad, in the French style. 

I'm also going to start a vegan kimchi fermenting, since we love kimchi. I love it way more than sauerkraut, which I still find odd, though tasty. I tasted the pickled fennel and lemons I made a while back, they taste very strongly of vinegar, but are quite edible. I might rinse them before adding them to things, so they don't overpower the food. The lemon flavor is good.