I’ve noticed in looking at my past few posts for Menu Plan Monday that I’m overlapping recipes – that is, I don’t end up using a recipe for the week I plan to, so I end up using it the next week. It’s a good thing, because that means we’re eating leftovers and saving money, but it does mean I need to readjust my planning a little.
Monday: Pizza.We haven’t tried Alexis’ great recipe yet, but we’re having friends over for dinner and games so this will be the perfect time to make it.
Edited 4/06 to add: We tried the pizza! It was SO good. I will say that this is not a pizza to have on a first date – I mean, it’s got onions and garlic and spinach (oh my!), plus blue cheese. Lots of strong flavors, for sure. They all work together really well. We and our company all really liked it a lot.
I also made a (turkey) pepperoni pizza as a back-up, since there were kids involved in this get together.
Tuesday: We might be going to Family Night at Chick Fil A with friends, but if not we’ll have tacos with black beans and the cilantro lime rice I wrote about a couple of weeks ago. I use lean ground beef in our tacos, and we make our taco seasoning from scratch based on a recipe I found at allrecipes.com. We like this seasoning better than any mixes we’ve bought, and you could easily make a big batch of it to have on hand if you make Tex-Mex food a lot like we do.
Wednesday: Pasta with homemade sauce, green beans, and salad. I got this sauce recipe from a friend and use it all the time. It reminds me a lot of La Madeleine’s tomato basil soup, and we’ve actually added cream to it before to really replicate the taste of the soup. Here’s the recipe, if you’d like to give it a try:
• 4 tablespoons butter
• 1 medium carrot, chopped
• 1 medium onion, diced
• 2 cans diced tomatoes
• Fresh basil, chopped (we use about 14 leaves, but you could adjust it according to your taste)
• salt/pepper to taste
• Melt the butter in a medium saucepan.
• Add the diced carrot and onion, and saute until they are translucent (keep stirring them so they don’t get brown).
• Add the tomatoes, basil, and salt/pepper and stir to mix. Cover and simmer on low heat about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and let cool for about 10 minutes (so you don’t burn yourself in the next step).
• Blend the sauce in a blender or with an immersion blender until smooth. I used a blender the first time but quickly discovered how much easier it was with an immersion blender – clean up was a cinch! Use whatever you have on hand, though. Either one will get you to the same end result.
• Enjoy! If you’re wanting to make soup, add cream or half & half to taste, and serve with a crusty loaf of Italian bread. Yum!
Thursday: Pasta leftovers. I love making pasta meals because a) they’re cheap, especially if we’re not having meat, b) J eats pasta really well, which is saying something with how picky he can be sometimes, and c) the leftovers go a long way – we will probably have this for lunch Thursday, too – and maybe Friday as well.
Friday: We’re trying a new recipe that my friend Alison told me about. This is for black bean and corn quesadillas. She says they love them in her family, and she has a toddler too so I know we should be good to go here.
Have a great week, everyone – happy eating!