Ah, adventures in meal planning. This past week has been enlightening with some important lessons learned in my ongoing attempt at grown-up-menu-making. First: When I get sick, I don’t want to cook and I don’t want ANYTHING that I previously planned to eat. I just want packaged chicken noodle soup and cold medicine. Second: When my man gets sick, he feels the exact same way. And thus, third: It might have been too soon for such an overly ambitious meal plan (last week I forgot about eating a meal from the freezer and had myself cooking a few too many things on Sunday).
My brutal cold hit me hard last Sunday morning so I barely managed to make my Goulash. My bean salad was sacrificed for sleep, we ended up freezing the chicken thighs on Monday, and ultimately shuffled most of the other meals around throughout the rest of the week.
Accordingly, the menu this week is fairly simple by relying on frozen goods and leftovers.
Sunday Food Gathering: I’ve down-graded from my usual Sunday food party to a simple gathering this week since we are both still recovering from this monster cold and I want to take it easy. I finally made the Lemon Parsley Bean Salad that I had planned last week; it doubled as lunch today and will be a great side for dinner tomorrow. For dinner tonight, Roast Beef, which is pretty low maintenance (roast + eat) with Yorkshire Pudding and Green Beans. This is another classic childhood meal that I love and even though the Yorkshire Pudding is still a little tricky to get just right, I get closer each time as I tweak and adjust the recipe from my parents.
Monday: Roast Beef Sandwiches. There will be leftovers from Sunday, so we’ll have thinly sliced pieces of meat on warm buns with mayonnaise and horseradish. Yum. Some leafy greens with bean salad on the side, and everything’s ready.
Tuesday: Greek Salad with Chicken. This is loosely based on Dave Lieberman’s recipe in Young and Hungry (the very first cookbook that was ever gifted to me by my mother – and a great book for anyone starting out in a kitchen). I chop up a cucumber and toss it with sliced cherry tomatoes, crumbled feta, pre-sliced black Kalamata olives, and red onions that have soaked in red wine vinegar for a few minutes. The dressing is a simple drizzle of olive oil, some lemon juice, and sprinkle of salt, pepper, and dried oregano. While I make the salad, my man will pan-fry some chicken thighs, which we’ll dry-rub with a ton of oregano before he starts cooking.
Wednesday: Shepherd’s Pie from the freezer.
Thursday: I’m breaking my “don’t try new recipes on weeknights” rule by planning to make this Italian Sausage Pasta Bake that I found on Pinterest. I’m not too concerned because the recipe seems incredibly easy and we got pre-made tomato sauce last week in a give-away at our grocery store, so there’s very little work to do and it’s pretty hard to mess up pasta.
Friday: Take Out. Not sure what it’ll be, I think we will go with whatever we’re craving when Friday night rolls around.
This will be my last meal plan for the month of January! I’m pretty excited that I’ve made it this far (not without a few hiccups, or sneezes) and I’m getting a bit more organized for the coming months. My family has been sharing favourite recipes and foodie finds online so I have lots of new meals queued up to try through February and March – the last of the dark winter months before we start getting real fresh produce here in Canada. (Time to start the countdown for my garden!)