I feel like it’s forever since I’ve blogged, but apparently it’s only been a week. Time is strange lately. Anyway, I had to laugh at myself — I was really proud of managing to cook and meal prep and just stay on top of things this past week. Then I looked at my photos (which I also managed to capture, yay me!) and realized we had pasta three times this week. Ack! and LOL. Because, really?! In my defense I needed to use up the greens and ricotta sauce, and then there was still leftover cauliflower from almost two weeks ago and I had been craving that roasted cauliflower pasta dish. However, the photos tell a very starchy story. 😛 I also don’t really remember when I made these dishes…but this is what we ate:
- Pasta w/Greens and Ricotta (Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home)
- used up most of the spinach still lingering but on it’s last legs, some of the arugula, basil from my porch plant, cottage cheese, fresh pasta
- the second time we had this I used a bag of frozen tortellini, that Giovanni Rana brand I’ve been buying at Publix. Seriously the best stuff ever!
- Spicy Red Pork and Bean Chili (Gourmet via Epicurious), Cheddar Cornbread
- used a package of sirloin pork chops from freezer (far less than the four pounds called for in the recipe), home canned/pickled jalepenos, 3 cans of black beans, and I think I forgot the cumin. It was still really tasty. Michael made the cornbread.
- Orecchiette w/Roasted Cauliflower (I didn’t use a recipe, but this is close and I did think as I was eating it that it would be good with bread crumbs. 🙂 )
- used up two open boxes of pasta (so, orecchiette and farfalline), chopped up the very last of the arugula as well as a little basil and stirred in with extra olive oil at the end
We ate salads for lunch a lot and also I grabbed Taco Bell one night, which was gross but also satisfying as I was REALLY HUNGRY. Two classes ran over so there wasn’t really time to eat at all that day…
I didn’t go to the grocery store until today, and that really helped us control food waste and also has kept the amount of food in the fridge to a reasonable amount. My goal is to not allow it to get so crazy like it was before…when cleaning it was a major adventure.
Guess what’s on the menu for tomorrow night?! Skillet lasagna. Until I wrote all this out, I honestly didn’t realize how often I’ve been relying on pasta. I think this might be a coping skill leftover from prior college/grad school experiences!
I have no pictures of our meals this week. It’s just been really hectic and I feel proud that we’ve not succumbed to eating out. I’ll worry about pictures when I have a bit more time. Before the week really started, I spent some time Monday and Tuesday (morning) prepping food to keep up stocked up for lunches and snacking. I made:
- Veggie Pizza
- Hard Boiled Eggs
- Salad Base (3 BIG bags)
- Chicken Tenders (1/2 bag, baked)
For dinners we have enjoyed:
This seems to be just about the right amount of food to keep us going through the week with a manageable quantity of leftovers.
For my lunches I have largely been eating salads comprised of the salad base, a handful of torn spinach, a handful of torn arugula, chopped peppers, corn, grape tomatoes, chopped cucumber, chopped chicken tenders, croutons and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese. And then a little container of dressing for over top. I also pack one of the snack-y type foods I’ve picked up over the last month or so and some fruit. It’s really filling.
I did not end up following the meal plan much last week; in the middle of the week we realized that the freezer was not cooling appropriately and had to call in for a repair. Luckily we didn’t end up losing any food, but a ham and a gallon of cider needed to be removed from the freezer and used immediately. I also ended up a bit under the weather with a several day migraine. In the end I made the following (clockwise starting with top left photo):
- Jalapeno Honey Steaks, Steamed Green Beans, Sweet & Spicy Roasted Carrots
- Roast Ham, Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Peas, Popovers
- Steak Sandwiches, Kale & Brussels Sprout Salad
- Cajun Tilapia, Green Beans w/Shallots & Garlic, Yellow Rice
We also ended up getting take out once and we each had lunch out one day. Looking ahead to next week, I have pretty simple meals planned that mostly take advantage of food we have on hand. We’ll be out of town for a week starting next Saturday and I’d really like to have my fridge pretty well cleaned out. Right now that looks like we’ll be eating the following:
- Meatball Subs, Salad
- Ham, White Bean & Kale Soup
- Spaghetti & Meatballs, Broccoli
- Chicken w/Mushroom Pan Sauce, Roasted Potatoes, Salad
- Homemade Pizza
Do you have anything exciting planned for your meals this week?
Last week’s cooking and eating went really well — I was successful in using up leftovers and minimizing food waste, as well as in cooking pretty much every night. I did not end up making the tostadas that were on the plan; instead I made enchiladas as I had half a can of sauce to use up, among other things. I will share that recipe on Tuesday, actually, as it turned out to be really yummy. There was one night I didn’t cook and I made one “official” dessert — a plum and blueberry crisp on Saturday. Anyway, left to right, top to bottom:
- Fish in a Packet, Baked Sweet Potato, Creamed Cucumber
- Pizza Margherita, Salad
- Egg Roll in a Bowl
- Ham & Turkey Sandwiches, Chips
- Pasta w/Tomatoes, Zucchini, and Sweet Corn (new recipe)
- Double Black Bean Enchiladas, Plum & Blueberry Crisp w/Whipped Cream
For this upcoming week I’m continuing my plumbing of the depths of the fridge (and freezer) but we are getting very low on produce so I expect to do a little more shopping than I did this past week. Most of what I am planning to purchase is on sale at one store or another in my area. Right now my meal plan is as follows:
- Jalapeno Honey Steak, Potatoes, Green Beans
- Use Up: Frozen green beans, potatoes
- Buy: Steak, Jalapenos, Limes, Cilantro
- Cajun Tilapia, Sweet Corn, Broccoli
- Use Up: tilapia, Cajun seasoning
- Buy: Corn on the Cob, Frozen Broccoli
- Cumin-Chicken Meatballs, Yellow Rice, Sugar Snap Peas
- Use Up: ground chicken, yellow rice
- Buy: sugar snap peas
- New World Vegetable Tart, Fruit
- Use Up: bell peppers, white beans, butternut squash
- Buy: bran flakes, silken tofu, fruit, zucchini
- Tortellini w/White Bean & Garlic Ragu over Garlicky Vegetables
- Use Up: tortellini, white beans
We will also have at least one night of leftovers and maybe a night of simple sandwiches/salads if necessary. Otherwise we get a little too inundated with leftovers. I’ll also be roasting some chicken breasts for our lunch salads since we ran of the pre-cooked breasts I bought at BJs in June. We still have a small amount of salad greens/base left, so I will probably need to make up another batch early in the week. I cannot express how helpful it is to have this on hand — we both eat much healthier when the salad is ready to go, but the crunchy greens I use don’t go bad nearly as quickly as spring mix, or baby spinach or other more tender greens do. Anyway, that’s my plan for this week. We’ll see how I do in sticking to it!