It’s been a while since I’ve done Menu Plan Monday. Like, a long while. Part of it is because during the first trimester of this pregnancy I was nauseous a LOT, and not much sounded good… and, I could never really tell what would sound good on a given day, so we didn’t do a whole lot of planning. I’ve felt much better for a while now, so the only excuse for not posting and planning is sheer laziness!
A craving I’ve had with this pregnancy is beef, so we have had a lot more of that on our menu than we typically do (I’m sure Brian is thrilled; he loves beef but usually is stuck with my “mostly chicken” menu plan. I’m really excited about our plan for Saturday’s meal, and I think it’s a recipe you might want to try, too.
Monday: Tacos with refried black beans, cilantro-lime rice, and homemade guacamole. Refried black beans are something we stumbled upon a while back, and we really like adding those to our meals in place of regular refried beans. Fresh, cold guacamole is always a nice side during the summer, and adding some cilantro and lime to it really brightens it (and pairs nicely with the cilantro-lime rice).
Tuesday: Yup, we’re still stuck in the Chick Fil A rut on Tuesday nights! There’s just something nice about a break from cooking, and our family of four can eat for around $12.00. We’ll actually be watching our friends‘ 3-month-old daughter this Tuesday, so we’ll probably see how busy it is – if it’s too busy we’ll really branch out and hit up Jason’s Deli instead. I know, I know – we live a wild life.
Wednesday: Chicken taco soup – a favorite of ours, and it’s a crock pot meal so it’s one of those that’s great to get home to being ready and waiting for us. Granted, it’s hot and not really soup weather, but this soup is a lighter option and sounded really good. The boys are hit or miss on if they’ll eat the soup or not, so we might heat up some chicken tenders too.
Thursday: Soup leftovers. Another good thing about making the soup mid-week is that we can stretch it out!
Friday: Dinner & games at a friend’s house! We’re really looking forward to getting together with several friends for a fun evening.
Saturday: Beef bourguignon and homemade egg noodles. I had never had this until recently, and oh my word is it good! This recipe is modified some to fit our family, but I think it’ll still be just as good… and I might even get the boys to try it!
- 3 pounds of lean stew beef, cut into cubes (I can often find the beef already cubed at our local supermarket, which is a big time saver)
- 2 carrots, diced
- 1 onion, chopped
- 8 ounces of bacon slices
- 3 tablespoons of flour
- 3 cups of red wine
- 3 cups of beef stock
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon thyme
- 1 bay leaf, crumbled
- 20 pearl onions
- 4 tablespoons butter
- parsley, bay leaf and thyme tied in cheesecloth
- 1 pound fresh mushrooms, halved (I like the flavor of mushrooms but like to leave the pieces larger because I don’t actually like eating them!)
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.
- Saute bacon in olive oil (we’ll cook ours in a cast-iron dutch oven; whatever you use needs to be oven-safe) for several minutes; then remove the bacon and set it to the side. Use a slotted spoon so you don’t remove the fat from the pot.
- Pat beef with paper towels to dry it so you can get a better sear. Add the beef a few pieces at a time to the bacon fat and saute until it browns on all sides. Set the beef aside with the bacon.
- Brown the veggies in the remaining fat; once they’re browned, pour out the excess fat, and return the beef and bacon to the pot. Toss with a few dashes of salt and pepper, then sprinkle the flour and toss to coat the beef.
- Place your pot in the preheated oven for 8 minutes, tossing the beef in the middle of that time period. Remove the pot and turn the oven down to 325 degrees.
- Stir in the wine and beef stock, and add tomato paste, garlic, and herbs. Bring to a simmer, then cover the pot and place it in the oven for 3-4 hours.
- Toward the end of 3 hours, saute pearl onions in butter and oil until they are slightly brown. Then add 1/2 cup of stock, salt, pepper, and the parsley, bay leaf and thyme tied in a cheese cloth. Cover this pot and let the onions simmer 40-50 minutes, then set the onions aside.
- In another skillet, heat oil and butter over high heat. Add mushrooms and toss for 4-5 minutes until lightly browned, then set the mushrooms aside.
- When the beef is finished cooking and is tender, pour the contents through a strainer so you can separate out the sauce. Then return the beef and bacon to the casserole dish, adding the pearl onions and mushrooms. Simmer the sauce for 1-2 minutes, skimming fat off the top. The sauce should be thick enough to coat a spoon. Pour the sauce over the meat and vegetables.
We’re serving this with homemade egg noodles, and will be trying this recipe for those. This is a time-consuming meal, for sure, but it sounds so homey and so good – and our house will smell amazing all day while the meat cooks. Yum!