Thursday, August 29, 2013

Meal Plan! 8/29

Meal Plan

This pregnancy has been really hard on me. We have flew by the seat of our pants more then I care to admit. I have been back on cooking 99% of the time again a couple weeks. Here are some great ones that I have made or am planning on making this week. Enjoy!

One meal I am really excited about making this week (maybe even TONIGHT!) is these Lebanese Meatballs with yoghurt dressing. I will switch out the lamb with beef to keep my budget intact. They sound super flavorful and I have some mint and parsley I need to use up. I will make a naan to go with it for my family. I will use either this grilled Lebanese flatbread or I will make this garlic cilantro naan that has been a hit in the past with it.

Last week I made the best fish tacos of my life (please note I grew up in San Diego). I used just an inexpensive tilapia and my whole family loved them. I dipped them in cornstarch and didn't do the other flour products but I bet they are great exactly as written. Give 'em a try. Be sure to make PLENTY though! 

I have looked at these Indian Spice Pork Skewers for a long time. They are an Our Best Bites recipe so I am sure they will be great. My friend Brittany taught me how good pork can be on a skewer. I am hopeful. I will serve with rice and salad. I will let you know!

Another Our Best Bites wonder we repeated last week was their Hamburger Steak smothered in onions and mushrooms. My hubby is a big fan. I double the veggies because we are big fans. It was an easy dinner paired with a salad.

Our garden is in full bloom. We have tomatoes coming out of our ears that are full of flavor and yumminess. I am looking forward to this Vidalia Onion Tomato and Corn tart. It screams of summer. I will probably use swiss cheese and make a crust out of hashbrowns. Should be great!

We made Jeff Mauro's Horizontal Pastor Tacos last week. Honestly they were the best meal I have made in a long time (which if you remember the competition wasn't fierce with the pregnancy). They were a little spicy but I didn't rub off the excess marinade like it suggests. We all ate them though and loved them. You will for sure see them again on my meal plan.

Friday, May 31, 2013

5/31 Meal Plan

This is going to be a good week for dinner. Maybe I am just extra hungry but I sure do like trying new stuff. Last week we had some great meals too. Like I said before those roasted veggie tacos were a dream. I think I have had them at least 5 times for lunch in the last couple weeks. Seriously, if you try nothing else give those a try. I actually really liked the hamburger steak too. I made it thinking it would be something Lee would like. We all really liked it. Our Best Bites still has not ever let me down. I did like the London Broil too. I took the leftover marinade after I took the steak out and sauteed a ton of baby bella mushrooms to go on top (be sure it boils for 5 minutes so it is safe). That was really yummy.I think our favorite of the week though honestly was the thyme carrots. My family fought over the leftovers.

Here is what is going on this week:

I just saw this  Brussel Sprout Sausage Pasta on Pinterest. It looked so good I want to do it right away. I made pasta for my little girls birthday and I realized my family is pasta deprived. They really really enjoyed it. I will make mine on a bed of sauteed peeled zucchini. If you haven't done zucchini noodles check out the pic here. I just use my potato peeler then saute them in a little pan spray.I think I have enough basil growing in my garden to pull of some fresh pesto for it...YUM!

My sister Deja (same one that suggested the Shepards Pie we love) made these  Sweet Potato Burgers. I am a sucker for sweet potatoes so for sure I need to give them a go. She cooked them in her waffle iron (like I do on falafel) to give lots of crispy bits. I will eat mine on a roasted portabello mushroom. I will serve it with this corn salad.

I guess I am in a burger mood because I am also doing these Spanokopita Burgers. These are a favorite we have had a couple times. I love 'em. I am going to do this Calabasitas on the side. Looks super summery and yummy. 

This broiled lemon chicken looks so easy and quick. Also, bone in skin on chicken is so cheap. Sign me up! I will serve it with a Sweet Potato Gratin.

These Thai Chicken Skewers seem like a great summer meal. I will pair it with this veggie spiral I will leave out the potatoes and make brown rice.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


(Photo from 10 dollar dinners...Food Network)

I just love the 10 Dollar Dinners show. She does a lot with cheap ingredients which means she uses plenty of veggies. I tried her carnitas and after a few modifications I have a recipe I love. I LOVE to serve it with TONS of fajita veggies. I am posting that recipe that I made up too. 
4 lb boneless pork butt/shoulder
Put in crock pot and pour over:
1 c orange juice (if you fresh squeeze throw those in too)
juice from 2 limes (don't throw those peels me)
Mix then rub all over pork:
1 Tbsp salt
2 tsp pepper
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp dried oregano
4 minced garlic cloves
1 minced onion
Cook in the crockpot on low for about 8 hours. Pull the meat out and shred. You then can pan fry in a little oil to get those crispy bits or you can also put it on a cookie sheet under a broiler for about 4 minutes or so. I like to then pour a little of the liquid from the crockpot over the whole thing so it is nice and juicy. 

Fajita Veggies
I think the real issue with fajita veggies is we don't think outside of the box. My fajita veggies include at least 5 but often all of the following:
*parsnips sliced (totally makes it I promise)
*carrots sliced
*bell pepper (lots of different kinds is good)
I then marinade these veggies for at least an hour but up to 6 hours. To cook them I roast them for about 30-40 minutes (until tender and bits of color) at 400 degrees. 
2 chipotle peppers in adobo (with about a tsp of adobo)
1/4 c evoo (keep in mind I usually have about 2 gallon ziploc bags of veggies)
3 Tbsp lime juice
8 cloves of garlic 
2 tsp kosher salt
Blend until all smooth then mix with veggies in ziptop bag.


Memorial Week Meal Plan

I realized I do these meal plans and then with the quick last minute freezer meals, quick grilled chicken, or some other last minute idea they last me about 2 weeks. I still have not done the coconut polenta but otherwise I am onto a new plan. The Honey Jalepeno Chicken was great, I will do that one again for sure. The moussaka was so much more involved then I remember. My family LOVED it though. When you can sell eggplant as a comfort food maybe it is worth making more often then once every 2 years. Of course the Cuban Pork Chops are an all time favorite.

This is what is up this week:

I can't lie. I already made these Tuesday for lunch. I just couldn't wait. They really are all that good. They are probably my favorite lunch in a long time. Head on over to Naturally Ella and get the recipe for the BEST veggie tacos with avocado cream and feta you have ever had! I am far too cheap to buy baby tomatoes this time of year so I just chopped romas. I also didn't have corn so I replaced it with finely chopped sweet potato. Really you need to try them. My family MAY get them one night for dinner this week. We will see!

I have to admit. I am an Our Best Bites fan. They really have never led me wrong. If you haven't tried any of their recipes you are certainly missing out. When I saw this Hamburger Steak recipe it looked like something my hubby would love. He is pretty patient with my vegetarian meals and my crazy ideas so sometimes I make something that I know he will love. I love all the mushrooms and onions on top so I won't be too sad obliging him! I will serve it with my favorite lemon brussels and mashed potatoes. Here is the link for the lemon brussels again just in case you haven't heeded my advice and made them. I roast mine first then saute the rest of the ingredients in a little butter and top with a bit of fresh grated romano. I have to say I had a dinner party the other night where I had 4 self proclaimed veggie haters at my table (adults). They each took TWO of these brussels then fought over the rest. They both asked for the recipe. Trust me...these brussels change lives! 

I bought a ton of London Broil for $1.99 at Albertson's a couple weeks ago. I don't know if we over cooked it but I didn't like it as much as I have in the past. I found this recipe to give it another try. I am going to do it with these baked carrots. I always do a salad so of course we will have that too. 

I also am doing my Carnitas with roasted fajitas. Here is the link to the post. I have tried many different kinds of carnitas and this is my favorite recipe. I really love all the side veggies too. If you are vegetarian might I suggest the veggie fajitas as a meal on their own.

We will also be doing a stuffed baked potato night. My neighbor cans her own chili. She gave me a bottle to try and said it is great over potatoes. I think a potato bar with sour cream, roasted veggies, and cheese sounds like a fun great Friday night. 

Monday, May 6, 2013

Weekly Meal Plan

We had a couple days of freezer meals and parties so here I am back. My last weeks menu really was great. LOVED the grilled chicken skewers, the shepards pie, and the balsamic beans. Those were my first time on those. The chili cauliflower I probably won't repeat. I didn't love it. I also didn't love the greek inspired chicken. The other repeats were great as always.

This week:
Sweet Chili pulled pork from here over this coconut polenta. The coconut polenta called for a chili pork from her book so I found another one online. I hope it works. I will cut and replace some of the sugar. I will serve it with roasted broccoli and salad. 

I am also doing this Honey Jalapeno chicken tenders. I will serve with rice, roasted veggies and salad. I probably will cut back the 6 jalapenos so my kids won't die..haha.

I am also doing Melissa D'arabians Moussaka. I have done it before. It is a lot of work but REALLY good. I used grape juice for the wine and it turned out well. This pairs well with just a salad. Here is the recipe here.
 We also have made a number of times Guy Fieri's Cuban Pork Chops with Mojo. It is really yum. It is good for a light meal with just a salad. Here is the link.

We also will repeat the Shepard's Pie from last time. Keaton REALLY loved that and asked for another showing :)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Weekly Meal Plan

Just a re-cap of last week.... I felt like we had a pretty good eating week. To see the links for last week click here. I forgot how much I loved the cooking light pork chops recipe. We especially loved the mango salsa again. It is a good, easy, cheap dinner that is healthy. I need to make that more often. The Pineapple Chiken skewers were really good too. It made a TON of marinade. You can probably cut it by 1/2 or more. I cut it in 1/2 and froze the second half to throw some chicken in later for an easy dinner. I still had enough to marinate the chicken, pineapple, and some mushrooms to put on skewers. I boiled the excess marinade (to be sure the chicken residue was cooked) and we ended up serving the dinner as kind of rice bowls. The kids had rice chicken and pineapple with the cooked marinade poured over. It was a hit. The other recipes were all pretty tasty as well. Lot's of repeat worthy things. Onto this week:

I really think she needs to re-name this recipe. I haven't tried this one yet but it looks great. Lemon dressing on it, yogurt marinade....yum all my favorites. I am going to sub out the dry herbs with fresh from my little herb garden for added bang. I will serve with salad and these balsamic green beans.

This is a great one. I always double it and have some thighs sitting in the marinade all ready to defrost for a quick grilled meal. I boil the marinade on this one too to make a sauce after. I will serve with salad, baked potato, and this Chili Cilantro Cauliflower. We haven't done the cauliflower before but it looks great. 

My sister Deja recommends this. Her hubby is a fan of the shepard pie (as is mine). She said she just used ground beef instead of the lamb. I will serve it with salad and bread (if my family is lucky!). It has really good reviews. I am looking forward to it!

My fabulous neighbor Tara joined a goat milking co-op (I think that makes her pretty darn cool). To make her even more cool she is making chevre goat cheese with the milk. I don't know how I rate but she made me some. I have some kalamata olives I need to use so I am thinking this chicken will be perfect subbing the feta for chevre. I am going to serve them with these citrus-grilled veggies Anne Marie recommends. I will cut the evoo way back and will probably roast them inside with the veggies I can find in season. I am thinking mushrooms, onion, zucchini (over-priced this time of year but oh well), maybe a little eggplant if I can find a good one. I will of course do salad too. 

Everyone needs a quick meal in their pocket. This is a great mix. I serve it on naan I make for my family and I like it just in lettuce cups for me. Really yummy easy dinner. 

These are really yummy too. I make my own hamburger buns for the family and I like mine on a grilled portabello mushroom. For the spread I make more of an aioli. I roast my own red pepper, leave out the parsley, and use the olives. I will serve with sweet potato fries.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Weekly Meal Plan

This is what we are eating at our house this week along with adjustments I am making. I have been e-mailing this out to about 10 people or so. I thought I would make more of a record if I ever need to repeat. Enjoy and leave a comment if you have tried any or any adjustments you like! Most of my menus are gluten free and sugar free.
I will serve with baked potato, salad, and peas. I used smuckers simply fruit apricot for the marinade. I doubled the marinade and put a second batch of chicken thighs in the freezer. When I need a quick meal I can pull it out and it can soak while it defrosts. With rice it is a quick done dinner. 

I am going to cut the honey back quite a bit. This looks so great. Something about grilled pineapple is super yummy. I will serve it with salad, rice and Lemon/ Garlic brussels. Have you tried the lemon garlic brussels? They are really my favorite. I roast the brussels then saute in a little butter with the rest of the ingredients. I then grate a tiny amount of romano cheese over it. REALLY awesome.

This is an old Cooking Light recipe. It is really really great. It was the gateway to get Lee to eat fish. I will serve it with salad, brown rice and roasted asparagus.

These are one of our favorites. I doubled this too and froze another batch. I will serve with these awesome sweet potatoes, salad, and broccoli.

I got some yummy mangoes from my BFF Anne Marie so I am up for making these chops. This is another good old Cooking Light recipe.  This is super yummy and with rice it is an easy dinner.