This Week’s Meal Plan – 11/28

Happy Thanksgiving!

Are you sick of turkey yet?

We had a great time making our annual Thanksgiving visit to Grandma and Papa’s house (currently located in Kalamazoo, MI — might it be closer in 2017?). The weather was overcast and drizzly pretty much the entire time we were there, but there was good food, good beer, good wine, good conversations and Rylie got to play games, do yoga, ask questions, do crafts, make up games and generally be the star of the holiday. It was awesome.

Now, we’re back home, and it’s time for a week of Fall cooking.

Dinners

To start – upon our return on Saturday, we made a pizza using one of the parbaked-then-frozen pizza crusts from last week’s pizza night.

Sunday lunch featured some pizzadillas from Cooking Light, then dinner was Fish Tacos from the America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook accompanied by Cilantro Lime Rice from How to Celebrate Everything.

The rest of the week’s plan:

Monday: Oriecchette with Sweet Sausage Bolognese from How to Celebrate Everything (I’m planning to make a double batch of the bolognese sauce and freeze the 2nd half for a future quick dinner)

Tuesday: Quiche with Wild Mushrooms, Gruyere and Chives from Taste and Technique

Wednesday: Roast Chicken on a Bed of Vegetables from Thomas Keller’s Ad Hoc at Home

Thursday: Leftover night (but, it’ll also be when I make homemade chicken stock from the Wednesday night carcass)

Friday: Chicken Soup with Dumplings from Thomas Keller’s Ad Hoc at Home (using leftover chicken from Wednesday night’s roasted bird)

Baking

Chocolate Chip Scones from Cooking Light

This Week’s Source Material






This Week’s Meal Plan – 11/16

Last week was not great. Probably one of the more disheartening, faith-in-humanity-threatening weeks ever. I’m also thankful that Rylie is only 4, and that we chose to send her to a school where kindness is the rule and diversity reigns. She’s going to grow up to become an amazing, loving, caring, intelligent, open-minded, beautiful human being. And so are many of her classmates. We can learn a lot from them.

On a brighter note, we ate some good food.

Last Week

The French Toast Casserole made for a delicious weekend morning breakfast. Note for the future: Make this when guests are coming over because it could easily serve 8.

White Bean Chicken Chili was delicious — even Rylie liked it!

Sous-Vide Turkey Breast was awesome. Sooooo juicy.

Stir-fried pork with green beans and cashews – solid, although the beans were squeaky

Pressure Cooker Butternut Squash Risotto – I have vowed to only make risotto in the pressure cooker. There’s so much less stirring. Kelley doesn’t always love the orange veggies, but when I mix them with risotto (unofficially one of her top 5 meals), it all works.

Hoison Pork Roast – what a great flavor, what a great smell while it cooked.

Seared Chicken with Saffron Couscous – The seared chicken part was delicious. The couscous, on the other hand, was tasty, but didn’t really highlight the saffron and required some additional cooking time beyond what the recipe called for (I imagine I used a different type of couscous than the recipe author used, but still it’s frustrating when that happens)

This Week

Baking

Banana Bread – from Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything

Dinners

Glazed Salmon with Couscous and Green Beans – from Cooking Light

Pork Chops with Sauteed Apples and Brussels sprouts – from Cooking Light This screams fall, right?

Rigatoni with Sausage and Chives – from Cook’s Country

Rosemary Chicken Noodle Soup – from gimmesomeoven.com

Soy-Glazed Chicken Thighs with Asparagus and Scallions – from Bon Appetit Here’s our weekly Chicken thigh meal!

Turkey Taco Burritos – from Cooking Light

and… one of these days, we are going to have homemade pizza from my go-to pizza dough book:

Chipotle Bean Burritos – from Cooking Light magazine

On Tuesday night, we dined at Chipotle. It was ok, but it doesn’t match the flavors of a homemade dinner. Wednesday was bowling night, so I ate a big lunch and Kelley made a grilled cheese dinner that she hasn’t blogged about yet for some reason.

That takes us to Thursday, where we went vegetarian with homemade bean burritos.

The Menu: Chipotle Bean Burritos served with Guacamole and Chips, from Cooking Light Jan/Feb 2010 – also available at myRecipes.com

The Pictures:

The Verdict:

  • Overall, a really simple, relatively inexpensive meal that only took about a half hour to prepare
  • It’s the easiest part of this meal, and not exactly a ground-breaking recipe, but the guacamole was really good
  • The recipe called for 10-inch tortillas, which I’m pretty sure I bought, but I don’t think I really over-stuffed these, so if you want to match the pictures at myRecipes/Cooking Light, I’d suggest getting a bigger tortilla.

Packer Playoff Loss Dinner: from Cooking Light magazine

Quick weekend-closing post.

During halftime of a fairly exciting, but ultimately somewhat heartbreaking, Packer playoff loss, we whipped together a recipe from this month’s Cooking Light magazine.

The Menu (as suggested in the magazine – follow that link for a great picture)

Seared Lamb with Balsamic Sauce

Cracked Wheat–Currant Pilaf: Sauté 1½ cups quick-cooking bulgur in 2 teaspoons butter over medium-high heat for 1 minute. Add 1½ cups water and ½ teaspoon kosher salt. Bring to a boil; cook 2 minutes. Cover, remove from heat, and let stand 25 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Stir in 3 tablespoons dried currants and 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley.

Spicy Chard: Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper and 2 minced garlic cloves; sauté 30 seconds. Add 8 cups chopped Swiss chard and ¼ cup chicken broth; cover and cook 8 minutes.

The Verdict

This is probably only the third or fourth time that I’ve even cooked lamb chops, but given their ease of cooking and their great flavor (even without the sauce), I won’t hesitate to make them again. I will, however, wait until they’re on sale since this is not a cheap meat.

As for the side dishes, the cracked wheat-currant pilaf had a nice flavor, but it was definitely the base in this meal. The spicy chard, on the other hand, had a really nice kick to it.