Monday, October 26, 2009

Menu Plan October 25 - 30

Last week we did a decent job of sticking to the menu. Friday's jambalaya didn't happen, because I forgot I had to work early and didn't get home in time to get it in the crockpot. I think we ended up going out for teriyaki instead. I did finally get that orange chicken made, and hubby HATED it. I'd love to give it one more go (it was too sweet and needed more vinegar), but he said that he'll never eat it again, so I guess that's out. I was really looking forward to having a somewhat healthy alternative to Panda Express, but I guess it wasn't meant to be.

We've finally hit the rainy season (I look forward to the return of the rain all summer long), and it's comfort food, comfort food, comfort food for me! So here's the plan this week.

Sunday: I made Swedish meatballs and spaetzle. So good. I think I could eat this every day! I made a double batch, using half ground beef and half ground pork, and it made enough meatballs for three meals for our little family. My 10 month old couldn't stop eating the spaetzle. She loves her carbs!

Monday: Scalloped potatoes and ham. I didn't have the Swiss cheese, so I just doubled the cheddar. And I made it with two cups fat free half and half and one cup of milk, and it was so rich and wonderful!

Tuesday: Beef Stew

Wednesday: Hamburger Casserole

Thursday: Leftovers

Friday: Stuffed Peppers

Please remember to visit for more great menu ideas!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Pad Thai

I made this for dinner tonight. The original recipe came from Hungry Monkey, but I tweaked it a bit so here's my version.

Sauce (makes enough for two batches):

12 T tamarind concentrate (sour soup base)
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup canola oil
6 T fish sauce
1 T rice vinegar
1/4 cup sugar

If your tamarind concentrate is free of seeds, just mix all the ingredients together, stirring until sugar is dissolved.

If your tamarind still has some seeds (mine did), put it in a wire mesh strainer over a bowl and pour the water through it. Press it through the sieve with the back of a spoon, scraping the underside frequently, until all of the tamarind has been strained and just the seeds remain. Mix in remaining ingredients, stirring until sugar is dissolved.

The remaining sauce can be frozen.

Pad Thai (serves 4)

2 large chicken breasts, diced
1/4 cup canola oil
8 ounces pad Thai rice noodles
2 large eggs
1/2 recipe pad Thai sauce
1 T. minced garlic
3 scallions, sliced
1 cup bean sprouts, blanched for 1 minute in boiling water
lime wedges
chopped peanuts

Soak the noodles in hot tap water for 30 minutes, then drain. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute chicken in 2 T. oil until cooked through. Remove chicken and set aside, and add remaining 2T. oil to the pan. Add eggs and scramble. Add noodles, chicken, sauce, garlic, scallions, and bean sprouts and stir well until all the sauce has absorbed.

Serve with lime juice squeezed over and peanuts sprinkled on top.

Menu Plan October 19 - 23

Fall is in full swing and I couldn't be happier about it! Yesterday we cleaned out most of the garden (the pumpkins are still there - does anyone know if pumpkins keep ripening once the vines are dead?) and picked the apples from our tree. Today I'll be trying my hand at crockpot apple butter , and I'll probably try to make some applesauce too. We didn't get a lot of apples, but since they're all 6 - 8 inches in diameter, they go a long way!

Here's the menu for this week:

Monday: Pad Thai (I'll be using a recipe from Hungry Monkey, which is an absolutely fabulous memoir/cookbook!).

Tuesday: Taco salad

Wednesday: Orange Chicken (yes, this has been on the menu for about a month now, and I'm bound and determined to finally make it!).

Thursday: leftovers

Friday: slow-cooker jambalaya

As always, go to for more menu possibilities than you ever imagined!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Menu Plan October 12 - 16

Well, last week's menu plan went kaplooey on me. I'm not even sure what we ate - I do know that I picked up Panda Express on Friday because my morning got completely away from me and hubby just wasn't in the mood for chili dogs, my "no time to cook" standby. So, here's hoping this week goes better. It's a busy one, so there's lots of easy stuff on the list!

Monday: Bulgogi with sesame rice and fried cabbage (I just use the bulgogi part of the linked recipe, though the rest sounds good too!

Tuesday: chili (picked up some buffalo meat today just for this. Should be good.)

Wednesday: slow cooker chicken soft tacos

Thursday: leftovers

Friday: spaghetti with meat sauce

You know the drill. Go to for tons of fabulous menu ideas!

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Menu Plan October 4 - 9

All day long I've been trying to plan my menu, and now that I'm sitting here at the computer, my mind has gone totally blank...

What I really need to do is get out my cookbooks and reenergize myself. I look up recipes online all the time, but there's something about dragging out the cookbooks (I have about 200) and having a good read that makes me all warm and fuzzy and ready to be inventive in the kitchen again.

Oh, and I am totally celebrating the return of casserole season. I love casseroles. Hate putting them together, they usually seem so time consuming, what with all the boiling of noodles/potatoes/rice/whatever, and chopping of the onions and other vegetables and such, but I love, love, love eating them!

So here's what I think this week will look like:

Sunday: taco salad
Monday: Swedish meatballs and spaetzle (I think the little one's going to love spaetzle. She's a carb girl, just like her mommy, and is way into eating noodles and such these days).
Tuesday: slow cooker orange chicken
Wednesday: tuna casserole
Thursday: leftovers
Friday: possibly more leftovers, based on the menu, though if there aren't enough, I'll make chili.

As always, visit for more fabulous menus!

Last week's menu

Once again, I missed the menu planning boat, but we had some good meals so I'm going to record them anyway! Now, I just have to remember...

Monday: I was home, and we had errands to run, so we ended up eating out.
Tuesday: Turkey Tetrazzini (using this recipe, but with turkey instead of chicken)
Wednesday: beef stew and corn muffins
Thursday: leftovers
Friday: Ham and Potato casserole

Good stuff! Now, to plan this week's menu!