What’s for dinner

I promised I’d share what we eat in a two-week period, so here it is. I was hesitant about posting this, afraid to be judged too much on what we eat and what we don’t eat. So I do have some caveats for you:

Produce. I occasionally will do a quick run to the store after a week to get refills on fruits, vegetables, and/or wine. Some produce keeps really well though, including apples, grapes, onions, carrots, and broccoli. Unripe tomatoes and avocadoes will ripen on your countertop, and provided you wash them as you eat them (instead of washing them right when you get home from the store), strawberries and blueberries can last for up to a week. This means if I want grilled peaches or a salad I make sure to plan those meals in the first week of our eating instead of the second. Or I plan a second trip to purchase just the essentials.

Unusual ingredients. Budget-wise, I try to be sure I’m using unusual ingredients at least twice in our two-week shopping period. Yes, that means I might make a dish with heavy cream two weeks in a row, but because heavy cream isn’t something we normally keep in the house, I want to be sure to use it up before it goes bad.

Meatless Monday. My husband thinks the concept of meatless Monday is absolutely ridiculous. I served him a vegetarian sandwich (a Panini no less!) and he was like, thanks, but I’ll need some meat for my second course. Both he and the kids balked at sweet potato burritos (which I thought were amazing). So I’m trying vegetarian nachos this week, but just on one of the Mondays. We’ll have another vegetarian meal, but since it’s a pasta bake I planned it for a weekend when I have to work so I can take the leftovers with me.

Without further ado, here’s our two-week menu plan:

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And here are the links and explanations:

Week One. On Monday, we’ll have Rachael Ray’s Chicken Tikka Masala. Tuesday is taco night, and I just buy some ground turkey and a taco kit for Chris to make for the boys. Wednesday we have a picnic at Sam’s preschool and were asked to bring a dessert or side; I’m excited to try this fudge from Rachael Ray. Thursday is another Chris night of hot dogs and fries, and Friday we’ll have one of my favorites, Caprese Chicken from Laaloosh. Saturday we have a baby shower barbecue and again will bring a dish to share, this time Three Bean Salad, also from LaaLoosh. Sunday I’m going to try a new recipe, Gremolata Bowties from Rachael Ray.

Week Two. We’ll start the week off with vegetarian nachos on Meatless Monday (also a Rachael Ray recipe, but I can’t find a link), and Tuesday Chris will cook spaghetti with a jarred sauce. Wednesday we’ll have what’s essentially a pantry/freezer meal, Pioneer Woman’s Chicken Quesadillas. Thursday it’s Real Simple’s Creamy Baked Pasta with Kale and Parmesan. I’m hoping kale is one of those vegetables that will hold up over time. Friday we’ll all have leftovers. Don’t be afraid to plan leftovers into your week! Number one, it’s kind of freeing not to have to cook, and number two, it forces you to eat the food you bought and made. Saturday I work and the kids love to come into the hospital cafeteria, so we’ll probably do that for dinner. Sunday it’s more leftovers for me and pizza for the boys.

What do you think? Would you try something like this for your family?

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One thought on “What’s for dinner

  1. Kate says:

    Nicely done, very impressive! The blessing and curse of the Hackman household is that Phil loves to cook (and is quite good at it!). He is also a bit of a “free spirit” and likes to eat more according to how he’s feeling, which is a constant source of frustration for me (since I prefer to plan). The upside is that means he gets very involved in the cooking when he is in the mood for something specific (that I have not already planned to make). He also can make a gourmet meal out of whatever we have in the house. There is a day nearly every week where it feels a bit like an episode of Top Chef….”here are your very limited ingredients…..now GO!!!”

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