Monday, March 19, 2012

Menu Plan March 19 - 23

I had a menu plan last week, but I didn't post it.  We even mostly stuck to it.  It was easy because I'd prepped a chicken over the weekend, so we had a breast for pad Thai and shredded meat for chicken and dumplings all ready to go.

My freezer is, once again, stocked to the gills.  Yesterday I picked up two corned beef roasts at $1.88 a pound.  I discovered that, in my area, canned corned beef is now up to $5 a pound, where I used to be able to get it for $1.89 just a couple of years ago.  Hubby doesn't care for the fresh roasts, but if he wants hash he's going to have to suffer through, because I'm not paying $5 for a can!  Once I get it all mixed up in the pan, I'm guessing he's not going to notice much of a difference. 

Here's what's on the menu for this week:

Today:  Corned beef hash
Tomorrow:  Lemon Brown Sugar Chicken (this was on the menu a couple of weeks ago but I didn't get to it).
Wednesday:  No-Crabs-Allowed Cakes
Thursday:  King Ranch Chicken
Friday:  Grilled steak and baked potatoes

Have a great week!  And remember, as always, to visit for all your menu planning needs.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Late March Garden To-Do List

It's been a couple of weeks since I last thought about the garden.  This morning I had a few extra minutes, so I flipped through my current favorite gardening book to see what should be happening at the moment.  I made myself a little to-do list, so I could check things off as I go along.

Start seeds inside:
 - parsley
 - kohlrabi

I may also start a couple of other herbs to have a small indoor herb garden, but my house isn't conducive at all to house plants so I'm not sure I'll actually do that.

Plant outside:
 - carrots
 - onions
 - spinach (now that I think about it, I'm not sure if I have any spinach seeds.  I'll have to check on that).

Prune raspberries

Clean out the dead plants from the strawberry beds, and supplement with new ones.

Call my local nursery to see if they're going to have bay laurel plants this year (I really, really want one of these!!!).

My gardening goal for this year is to pay attention and stay on top of things.  This past week I had the pleasure of taking raspberry puree from last summer out of the freezer to make real raspberry Italian sodas.  It's little things like that that remind me that all the hard work is definitely worth it.

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Vegetarian Butter "Chicken"

I don't know what to call this.  In my never ending quest to find a meatless meal that my meat-loving hubby will accept, I took a Butter Chicken recipe and made it vegetarian.  My daughter took one bite and declared it disgusting.  I thought it was wonderful, and hubby said he'd eat it again, but it would be better with chicken or something, LOL.

Now, I've never had butter chicken (or any variation thereof), so I don't know what it's supposed to taste like, but this worked for us!

Vegetarian Butter "Chicken"
Adapted from a recipe from the Stone Soup Virtual Cookery School
Serves about 6

Vegetarian "Butter Chicken"

2 medium russet potatoes, peeled and diced
1/2 large head cauliflower, chopped into small florets
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 tablespoons curry powder
1 tsp. red chili flakes
1 26-ounce box chopped tomatoes, undrained (I used Pomi brand)
 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
3 tablespoons heavy cream
chopped nuts for garnish, if desired

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Add potatoes, and cook five minutes.  Add cauliflower and cook an additional five minutes.  Drain and return the pot to the stove.  When all the water has evaporated, add the olive oil and warm over medium-high heat.  Add the onions and saute until soft.  Add curry powder and chili flakes and saute for one minute.  Stir in tomatoes, potatoes, cauliflower and chickpeas.  Simmer 15 minutes or until potatoes have broken down and thickened the sauce.  Reduce heat.  Add butter and cream, stirring until butter is melted and combined.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Serve hot topped with chopped nuts, if desired (I used cashews).

Menu Plan March 4 - 9

Been a while since I planned a menu, and I must admit I've missed it.  I'm taking a menu planning class over at Stone Soup Virtual Cookery School and it is inspiring me.  I love the cookery school - if you have the cash and can sign up, everything I've seen from Jules has been completely amazing. 

This week's menu was easy - I found a new recipe I really want to try, took a chicken out of my over-stuffed freezer, and found some produce that needs to be used up.  Voila - four meals planned in less than five minutes!

Today:  Vegetarian "butter chicken" (a recipe from Stone Soup, but I'm using potatoes, cauliflower, and chickpeas in place of the meat.

Monday:  Broccoli beef

Tuesday: Roast Chicken 

Wednesday:  Stuffed Peppers

Thursday: Leftovers, if we have any, otherwise spaghetti and meatballs

Friday:  Lemon Brown Sugar Chicken

Have a great week!  Be sure to visit for many more menu planning ideas!