Monday Meal Planning: a Week and a Day Late, Twice as Nice

No meal plan last week?

Well, there was a plan, and I cooked the food, and we ate the food, and it was good.  But it didn’t make it quite to the internet.  The good news is that I have now tested those recipes, I can still share links, and there will be a second meal plan at the same time.  Oooh, aaah.

So many choices!

I also feel like there are so many tiny things that go on each day, yet I can’t remember a single one of them later.  Is this why people say that time flies when you have little kids?  There’s just a fog of, “Oh my goodness, please don’t draw on the walls!” and “Please take the shoe out of your mouth,” and “Eat your green beans before bedtime!”  Note the lack of “please” on the last one.  That’s a combo of dinner-is-past-my-most-patient-hours and veggies-aren’t-optional.

Anyway, I’ll try to remember fun anecdotes to accompany the food next time.

Week 1:

photo by Joe Lingeman via The Kitchn
  1. Chicken Divan Casserole (The Kitchn), absolutely my favorite thing I made last week.  It was fantastic and healthier than it looks (lots of broccoli, no chopping of said broccoli), delicious on top of a wild rice mix that I bought to go with the next recipe.
  2. Wild Rice Bowls with Red Lentil Curry and Spinach (The Kitchn), sadly got delayed from last week’s menu (Hey there, Super Bowl food on Sunday!)… will be cooked tonight instead.
  3. 10-Minute Tortellini (if you can fold tortellini like a magician… 30 minutes if you’re normal like me… Dinner a Love Story, one of my favorite sources), has made appearances in our menus about once a year, and it’s lovely.  It always takes me a while to figure out the exact recipe in the blog post.  For me, it goes like this: brown 1 lb. Italian sausage (the kind that isn’t in a casing, spicy for us, but mild would work, too) in a skillet, add favorite jarred marinara/tomato sauce option over cooked sausage, keep warm until you’re done with the tortellini.  Mix 1 container of ricotta cheese with zest of one lemon and chopped spinach (as much as you want) in a bowl.  Put ricotta mix into wonton wrappers and shape into your preferred shape (squares using two wrappers and more filling or more traditional tortellini shapes with less ricotta inside and only one wrapper), seal with a little bit of water on your fingers, and place into boiling water until cooked (a.k.a floating in water).  When the pasta is cooked, top with sauce and eat.  Add some parmesan on top if you’re feeling motivated.
  4. Chicken Posole (a.k.a. my favorite chicken soup, from, delicious.  I love this recipe.  It has some spunk thanks to the tomatillo flavor, and it has great texture because of the hominy.  If you double the recipe, it uses the meat from one small rotisserie chicken.
  5. Country Ham and Asparagus Frittata (Alton Brown), I tried frozen asparagus for this because the fresh asparagus didn’t look great at the store this week.  Don’t do it!  The flavors were great, but the texture of the asparagus was definitely lacking.  Sad.  Alton Brown is a keeper, but I need to work on making this recipe live up to his standard in my own kitchen.

Week 2:

  1. Wild Rice Bowls with Red Lentil Curry and Spinach, because it didn’t quite get cooked last week, and the ingredients lasted well in the fridge/pantry.
  2. Winter-Warming, Freezer-Friendly, Pantry-Cleaning Soup (Food 52), hearty non-meat option to keep us healthy and on budget.
  3. Lighter Spinach and Parmesan Egg Drop Soup with Cheesy Toast (Food 52), new recipe to us, combines somewhat healthy soup with warm, comforting cheesy toast for a 1-2 punch of winter warmth.

    photo by Mark Weinberg via
  4. Greek Avocado Chicken Salad, healthier, zestier version of the classic, adds some solid leftovers to the plan.
  5. Pork Shoulder Ragu (Dinner: a love story), old favorite, adds some hearty meat to our menu (in addition to another strong leftovers meal).

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