Menu Plan Monday March 21 (AK)

21 03 2011

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketLooking for a new recipe for salmon to go with the coconut rice recipe I wanted to try, I stumbled upon this gem: Thai Fish Cakes.  Luckily for me from recent attempts at Thai food (never as good as my friend Nancy makes) I had most of the ingredients to attempt this.

And I must say YUM!!  It was a hit and was gobbled up by the entire family.  Not that we need much incentive to eat salmon, but it’s always nice to find a new way to eat our freezer full!

And here is my menu plan for this week…

Monday: sausage gravy on noodles, leftover veggies
Tuesday: Shake ‘n Bake Ranch chicken and stuffing
Wednesday: slowcooker stew adapted from this recipe
Thursday: leftovers
Friday: trout, asparagus
Saturday: backstrap, brown rice pilaf
Sunday: salmon gyoza, yakisoba

Stop by I’m and Organizing Junkie to find more meal plans.  Try out a new recipe today!


Meal Plan Monday- AK (week 2/4)

22 03 2010

Last week went pretty well.  I mixed up some of the days toward the end of the week and ended up just cooking salmon on Friday.  Two new recipes to share with you- yesterday avocados were on sale so we made up some easy guacomole.  I also made some cake mix sugar cookies for a school snack that came out rather nice (they taste like Jiffy cookies).

So now we are on week 2.  It was really nice to look at my menu and give hubby a 4 item shopping list for the week!  Here is my schedule for this week and the rest of the month…
Week Two

Monday:  breakfast for dinner: sausage, pancakes, eggs

Tuesday:  Thai chicken curry, rice, springrolls

Wednesday: leftovers

Thursday: Hawaiin Mini Burgers

Friday: date night

Saturday: crockpot Chicken Marengo

Sunday: spaghetti and meatballs, green beans

Week Three

Monday: leftovers from birthday party or pizza

Tuesday: Cajun beans and rice

Wednesday: sausage and pepper sandwiches

Thursday: Holy Thursday- lamb

Friday: Good Friday- soup and bread

Saturday: Bud’s birthday (dinosaur theme)- pizza and sides

Sunday: Easter breakfast- hot cross buns, coffee cake, fruit salad, sausage, hard boiled eggs

Easter dinner: ham, rolls, salad, green beans, scalloped potatoes, lamb cake

Week Four

Monday: leftovers!

Tuesday: Creamy Tuscan Bean and Chicken Soup

Wednesday: sausage lasagna

Thursday: tacos

Friday: salmon gyoza, vegetable lo mein

Saturday: leftovers or eat out

Sunday: meatloaf

For more inspiration check out I’m an Org Junkie every Monday. 

Have a great week!


Nutmeg Christmas Cookies

11 12 2009

Nutmeg is a very cozy spice. I love how it smells, especially freshly grated. This is good, because it’s cheaper to buy the kernel than pre-ground! My little micro-planer makes quick work of grating. This recipe is adapted from one in Bon Appetit Dec. 1994 for Brown Sugar and Nutmeg Snaps. The issue was devoted to creating a Victorian Christmas. They say that “Windsor Castle required six pounds of [nutmeg] for the royal mincemeat” at Christmastime. This cookie recipe requires considerably less, but the flavor of nutmeg is still strong! You might want to add less nutmeg if you prefer the flavor of brown sugar to be more pronounced. The flavor reminds me of a gingersnap cookie. These are also very kid friendly to make. Bean rolled the dough balls in sugar and smashed them down. After the cookies came out of the over, it was hard to tell which ones got a little extra-smushed.

Nutmeg Christmas Cookies (adapted from Bon Appetit 12/1991)

  • 1 1/4 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temp
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • extra sugar

Beat brown sugar and butter with mixer until fluffy. Mix in egg. Add flour, nutmeg, baking soda and salt; beat until well blended. Chill 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350F. Roll dough into small balls. Roll balls in sugar, coating completely. Arrange on lined cookie sheets about 2 inches apart. Using the bottom of a glass, flatten cookies. Bake until cookies are golden, about 10-13 minutes. Cool on baking sheets.

Be sure to check out Thrifty and Chic Mom to see her cookie recipe exchange and giveaway!

and Susieqtpie’s Scraps of Life Recipe & Idea Swap.

Meal Plan Monday- AK (June 21)

15 06 2009


Well the summer solstace has come and gone.  Yesterday the sunrise was 4:17 AM and sunset was 11:44 PM.  Too bad it was such a cloudy day for it, though.  And today doesn’t look any more promising 😦 Makes me feel like it’s fall rather than the middle of summer.  Maybe I should be putting stew and soups on the menu this week!

I didn’t make the halibut yesterday.  We were just so worn out from the day before and got a late start to the day that it was 5:30 before I even thought about fixing dinner.  I pulled a few things from the freezer and unearthed some forgotton packages.  So this week is going to be another freezer cleanout.  Why do I aAlso this week I need to use up some potatoes. 

One thing I need help on is ideas for using up 3# of ground beef that got a little more browned than I wanted it to be.  I didn’t want to waste it so I stuck it in the freezer until I could think of something to make wth it.  I’m thinking maybe of making chili with it.  Has anyone ever successfully masked burnt burger before??

I need to go to the store before I finalize this week’s plan (I know, that’s reverse of how it should be) so here is just a list of my ideas for cleaning out the freezer.  What I’m using out of my freezer/fridge/pantry is highlighted in orange.

Shephard’s pie (beef already cooked, potatoes, mixed veggies)
Lasagna (browned beef and sausage, lasagna noodles, cottage cheese)
Chili over hot dogs

The other days will just be leftovers or I’ll find something quick to make.  I’d probably be able to plan better if my 18mo old wasn’t throwing a tempertantrum for no apparant reason (other than maybe I’m not paying attention to him?) and pulling at my laptop. 

For more ideas and more information on meal planning visit I’m an Org Junkie.

Have a great week!


Meal Plan Monday in MA

7 06 2009


This is another week to clean out the freezer & clean up the house. Now that the sun is shining again, I can see the dust and pollen coating nearly everything. Eeww!

Don’t forget to enter our blog-aversary contest here to win a magazine subscription gift card for your choice of Conde Nast magazines!

Monday: Spaghetti & Green Beans

Tuesday: Ham & Split Pea Soup (I have a leftover ham bone from the freezer; defrost & add to the crockpot with a bag of split peas and chicken broth…YUM!)

Wednesday: Crustless Quiche (Jen’s recipe here)

Thursday: Turkey Meatloaf (from freezer)

Friday: Salmon Filets on the grill (have some neat cedar grilling planks)

Saturday: Leftovers

Sunday: Turkey Sandwiches squished in between working and an evening b-day party…

Spice up your meal plan with ideas at I’m an Organizing Junkie! .

Menu Plan Monday- AK

1 06 2009

orgjunkiempm1Last week I didn’t get around to planning or posting a menu.  Instead of unpacking and getting ready for the week ahead, we spent Monday afternoon fixing this problem .

I feel like I’ve been out of a routine since mid-April, so since I don’t have much planned this week I’m going to try to get some semblance of order back to my household… starting with meal plans… 

Monday- BBQ ribs from last night, broccoli
Tuesday- Chili Rellenos (using poblano peppers instead of green chilis), refried beans, rice
Wednesday- Stew, sourdough bread
Thursday- Salmon Quesadillas (I need to try a new recipe, thinking of either a variation of this one with cream cheese, or this one with cajun seasoning)
Friday- Cheeseburger pizza, salad
Saturday- Salmon alfredo, green beans, garlic bread
Sunday- brunch– pancakes, eggs, homemade hashbrown potatoes dinner– Buffalo burgers, fruit and veggie tray

And for more inspiration to start planning menus visit I’m an Org Junkie.

Have a great week everyone!


Meal Plan Monday- AK

18 05 2009

Camping season is here!!  We are planning our first trip this coming Sunday- heading up to Talkeetna.  I haven’t been up that way yet, so it will be fun.  I am hoping for nice clear weather so we will get good views of Denali (Mt. McKinley).

I have a busy week planned- working in the garden, getting our camper set up for the summer, organizing for our upcoming garage sale and extra babysitting.  We also have an energy rater scheduled to come tell us we’re spending way too much money on heating our house (like I need to pay someone to tell us that).  Anticipating no time for the kitchen I am going to turn to some easy tried and true recipes as well as some make ahead items…

SPhotobucketo on to my plan…

Monday– grouse and rice casserole, broccoli
Tuesday– steak and eggs, asparagus
Wednesday– salmon spinach quiche (a variation of this crustless recipe)
Thursday– leftovers
Friday– guests for dinner?- Mario Batali’s roast chicken, salad, rice side dish (I want to try either this Wild Rice Bangkok recipe or a rice pilaf)
Saturdaysausage gravy and biscuits for breakfast, grill something for dinner- most likely salmon  (Note: for those of you who have never made sausage gravy before… it’s really easy.  Follow this recipe once or twice and you’ll be able to make it from memory.)
Sunday– camping (leftovers and/or hot dogs)

I had a dream last night that I missed a huge stack of salmon in a different freezer and had to work 10 extra packages into our meal plans in the next few weeks.  I think that’s a sign I’m getting burned out on salmon!  This year I’m going to try to can some.  That way I won’t worry so much about using it all before it gets freezer burn. 

Once I’ve organized the camper for the summer and we’re done with the garage sale, I’ll be able to try out new camping recipes.  In the meantime check out my posts from last year for some ideas (for those of you who are already well into their summer).

And as always, for more inspiration check out hundreds of menu plans at I’m an Org Junkie.  You’ll be sure to find some interesting meal ideas there!


Where are the Biscotti?

8 05 2009

I can’t find my biscotti recipe and I have been wanting to make them for over a week now. Since my cravings are now a full-force obsession, I’m determined to find a new favorite before shelling out mega-bucks for the store bought variety. (Hmm, I do have some $ on my starbucks card from my birthday though…
I’ve discovered that King Arthur Flour has several biscotti recipes to choose from. I might as well start at the beginning with American-Style Vanilla Biscotti since I only have two eggs to work with anyhow and they sound fairly simple. Wish me luck!

Update 5/9: See the results of my biscotti adventure here.

What to do with 25# of pinto beans

20 03 2009

I have been running into facts about the benefits of beans a lot lately so I decided to pick up a big bag of pinto beans at the discount store the other day. Mind you, I didn’t have a clue of what I was going to do with them. I only knew that it was a good deal price-wise (25# for less than $15) and that they will last a long time so I don’t have to use them right away.

I decided to do a little research and come up with a variety of ways to use these beans. This will hopefully help us avoid getting sick of them after the first 3 pounds! Some of the recipes call for beans other than pinto beans, but I’m going to substitute since that’s what I have. I’m sure it will work the opposite way if you happen to have some other type of bean on hand…

In my reading I came across a number of interesting things I didn’t know about beans. For example, I didn’t realize they actually count as a vegetable. I guess I always assumed they counted as a meat. Also, you can add them to desserts to make a healthier treat (kind of like substituting applesauce for oil).

I am looking forward to trying some new recipes! This list is mostly just for ideas so I didn’t include links for any recipes. I’ll post specific links when I make them (if they turn out well!).  A majority of recipes for the items on this list can be found on the following sites:
US Dry Bean Council (USDBC)
Ontario Beans: The Bean Blog (OB)
Robbyn’s Friendly Freezer (RFF)

Appetizers, Side Dishes, Breakfasts:
Bean and Spinach Pizza
Baja Quesadillas (USDBC)
Spicy Breakfast Burrito
Refried Beans
Bean salad
Soup (ie minestrone)

Main Dishes:
White Bean and Chicken Chili (OB)
Chicken Chili Verde (RFF)
Beef and Bean Burritos
Chicken and Bean Baked Tortillas (OB)
Beans and Rice
Southwest Steak and Pinto Beans (USDBC)
Vegetable Stew with Parmesan Biscuits (OB)
Southwest Lasagna (USDBC)
South of the Border Bean Bake(RFF)

Snackin’ Bean Cake (OB)
Fudge (RFF)
Pinto Bean Muffins (OB and RFF)

Crafts and Other:
Maracas or tamborines (put some in between two paper plates stapled together- let kids decorate the paper plates)
Gluing beans to make pictures, shapes, letters (names or the “letter of the day/week”)
Counting/math games
Give some to a friend

Here are a few other sites to visit for more recipes using dried beans:,1-0,pinto_beans,FF.html,2615,0,Pinto-Beans-Recipes.html

Please let me know if you have any other ideas for me!  I’ll update this list if I discover anything new.  In the meantime, better get cooking!!


Menu Plan Monday- AK (Feb 23)

23 02 2009

I can’t believe Lent is upon us already.  I’m still recovering from Christmas! 

I am going to have to start some new Mardi Gras traditions.  When I was working, a coworker used to bring paczki in every year.  I am going to miss that!  I am going to plan on making these donut muffins for breakfast but I may have to stop by the store and buy some- is there a Polish bakery in Alaska? We’re also thinking of inviting some friends over for dinner.  Even if we don’t, dessert is going to consist of all the chocolate in our house that we need to get rid of before Lent!  Maybe chocolate chunk brownies with chocolate icecream!!

mpmpencilMonday– Cheesy Macaroni Leftover Casserole (invented back in November, this turned out to be a good way to use leftover beef), carrots
Tuesday– Mardi Gras! BBQ pork ribs,  red beans, corn on the cob, and some kind of decadant dessert!
Wednesday– poached salmon filets, broccoli
Thursday– leftovers
FridayHalibut soft tacos
SaturdayBeef and Bean burritos
Sunday– Hot dogs and au gratin potatoes

This is looking to be a great week, yummy food and a very, very short shopping list! My shopping list so far is broccoli, avocados, onions, kidney beans, enchilada sauce and bread (unless I get around to making some today). 

For tons of other meal plan ideas be sure to visit I’m an Org Junkie