Sunday, November 29, 2009

Week of November 30, 2009

I am really hoping to have a little more extra time this week to devote to cooking. I really miss it and our lives have been so "rushed" lately that I've often not had time to prepare the dinners that I've had planned each night. When I get busy (and stressed) I tend to ignore my body's needs and not eat so healthy - which is ridiculous because when does your body need decent nutrients and minerals more than when you're run down and burned out? My goal this week is to load on more fruits and vegetables whenever I can. And to bury my chips in a six foot hole.

Some of you know that I am now writing a new blog dedicated to the Life Organic Harvest Box each week. It's really been a fun experience for me, and I like working with the Life Organic team to see what we can come up with. Please check my new Life Organic Blog each week! I offer tips and recipes based on the contents of the Harvest Box each weekend.

Sunday: Dinner at friends' house, bringing hot artichoke dip as appetizer!
Monday: Potato Leek Soup, Salad
Tuesday: Grilled Chicken with Lemon and Oregeno and Sesame Broccoli
Wednesday: Malaysian Mango Chicken Curry
Thursday: Roasted Apple and Acorn Squash Soup
Friday: Cajun Parsnip Fries, Steak
Saturday: Roast Chicken and Roasted Mashed Potatoes and Yams

Although this menu looks a bit work-intensive, I think I am up for the challenge this week. I'm also hoping to make a batch of healthy granola and some zucchini chocolate chip muffins for the boys' lunches since I still have one more zucchini left.

Although for some I may be late to the holiday parade, I am planning to make my baking lists this week and start buying all the ingredients I need to start making my holiday goodies!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Week of November 22, 2009

I have another extremely busy week ahead since I am attending a craft show next Saturday and am scrambling to make as many cards as I can to bring to the show to sell. This doesn't leave a lot of free time for cooking fancy meals, so I tried to plan a fairly simple week. I picked a couple recipes from the Kraft Canada website and hope they turn out well. The Layered Mexican Bake looks easy and contains ingredients all 3 Things like . . . we love our Mexican food here so hopefully this won't disappoint.

My plan is to start organizing my Christmas baking and truffle making in the next week or so, so I'm not doing it all at once. Wow, novel idea. The truffles were such a huge hit last year that I plan on giving them as gifts to everyone again this season. I'm also looking for a few new recipes to add to my baking list, just to spice things up a little. So if you know of any great family favourites, be sure to let me know.

Sunday: Frozen pizza
Monday: Cayenne-rubbed Chicken with Avocado Salsa
Tuesday: Black Bean Soup
Wednesday: Layered Mexican Bake
Thursday: Tuna Melts with Veggies
Friday: Easy Baked Cheese & Vegetable Twist
Saturday: Leftovers/Order In

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Week of November 15, 2009

I missed posting my menu plan last week because I was extra busy over the weekend, and of course it came back to bite me in the @ss. Dinners were hectic and I scrambled around at the last minute trying to figure out what to make. Whether I like it or not, I thrive on organization and I just don't seem able to cope well not knowing ahead of time what I'm making for dinner.

Alas, here is hoping for a better week this time around!

Sunday: Cream of Broccoli Soup
Monday: Tacos
Tuesday: Spinach Salad with Spicy Shrimp and Mango
Wednesday: Chicken Wings in slow cooker
Thursday: Pasta with Shrimp and Broccoli
Friday: Winter Vegetable Soup (from Everyday Food, November 2009)
Saturday: Sloppy Joes

Friday, November 13, 2009

30-Minute Chili

Although I am a huge fan of chili in my crock pot, I stumbled upon this recipe and decided to give it a try. It ended up being incredibly tasty and so easy and fast to make! Serve it with some fresh crusty bread or rolls, a little shredded cheese, and a dollop of sour cream.

30-Minute Chili
Adapted from Martha Stewart's EveryDay Food
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 3 medium onions, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons chopped canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 pounds ground beef
  • 3 cans (14.5 ounces each) diced tomatoes in juice
  • 1 bottle beer
  • 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
In a Dutch oven or large (5-quart) heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high. Add onions and garlic. Season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes.
Add tomato paste, chili powder, chipotles, and cinnamon. Cook, stirring, until the mixture has begun to brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Add beef, and cook, breaking it up until no longer pink, about 5 minutes.

Add tomatoes with their juice, beer, and beans. Bring to a boil, and reduce to a rapid simmer. Cook over medium heat until chili has thickened slightly and beans are tender, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese, if desired.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Week of November 1, 2009

Fall is officially here - meaning cold season has arrived at our house. With a couple of sickies to look after, I didn't get to some of last week's meals, so you'll see them making an appearance on this week's menu plan again. With chillier weather settling in and making itself comfortable around these parts, I'm anxious to get moving on some hot and steaming comfort food. Not always good for the waistline, but usually a safe bet to keep spirits and tummies warm and happy!

Sunday: Paul's Hungarian Goulash
Monday: Garlic Scape Pesto (from freezer) with pasta
Tuesday: 30-Minute Chili
Wednesday: Easy Herbed Grilled Salmon
Thursday: Crock-Pot Pasta Fagioli
Friday: Chicken Enchiladas
Saturday: Lemon Chicken with Green Olives

With a few squash in my kitchen this week, I'm thinking I'll make more Roasted Apple and Acorn Squash Soup . . . . because I'm not feeling all that adventurous and don't think I feel like trying any new squash recipes this week.

Last week was Thing 2's fourth birthday and I tried my hand at making his birthday cake. It was nothing fancy but turned out quite well and all the kids loved it. If you're interested, check out our Pumpkin Birthday Cake on my other blog.