Customer Service Fail: Schuman’s Meats (Columbus, OH)

Why does it feel like almost every single one of the times I can be lured out, either for errands-running or just for having a couple drinks and breaking bread with friends, something happens that has a penchant to turn my mood from good to bad, relaxed to angry, etc. It especially sucks if it’s a place you’re a regular at (I’m looking at you, Ray Ray’s – When you started cutting corners again your quality suffered – when 7 out of 10 times we had food that was tough/barely edible, we got sick of wasting hard earned dollars on your food). But these kinds of wake-up experiments aren’t only limited to prepared food. If there’s anything I think is the most important part of being a successful business model, it starts and ends with customer service. And not accusing your clientele of theft.

Sometimes you can be a long term customer of a store, continuing to go there because of the great quality meat, decent prices, etc. Schuman’s has been one of our mainstays for us in the last decade, and if you had asked me yesterday, I would have (and I have in the past) recommended Schuman’s wholeheartedly, without any reservations. But what happened to my husband today was beyond the pale. I wrote this earlier today, right after it happened:

Unbelievable. Their staff just accused my husband of theft – stealing eggs one at a time (over a period of months, natch) and putting them in his pocket. They say they have witnesses. They say they’ve seen it with their own two eyes. They say they have it on video. If you’re going to make accusations, they damn well back them up, because not doing so opens them up to a defamation case (since they found it necessary to accuse him of this in a store full of customers). We’ve been long time (10 yrs +) customers who have frequented this store (one of the last remaining locally owned butcher shops) and who spend hundreds of dollars there every month.

Why, on that is good and holy, would my husband (whose salary is in the six figures, btw) steal an egg (worth .20) not just once, but repeatedly over the course of several visits. Maybe in six months he’ll have enough to make creme brulee. If they feel we are thieves, and you say that you have footage to prove it, then put up or shut up. Call the police and get them involved, because he has done absolutely nothing wrong.

We’ve already decided never to frequent their store again, and will also share our experience with everyone we can. If they think so little of us and the business we bring to them, and (in their words, not his) feel the need to “watch him like a hawk”, then they don’t need us in their store – because apparently if they think that we are thieves, then they all are complete idiots.

Contact Information: Schuman’s Meats, 1440 Harrisburg Pike, Columbus, OH (west side), 614-274-2161

A New Year, A New Way of Life

Happy New Year, everyone! Thank goodness 2013 is over, because this past year has been quite challenging, to say the least. But with the new year comes a new way of life, because I’ve decided to go gluten free.

To those who know me outside of the blog, you’ll remember that in the last 5 years I’ve been dealing with one setback or another. It may be related in part to my gastric bypass revision to a highly malabsorptive configuration, which in and of itself has it’s own set of challenges. I knew going in I’d have to be really conscientious about protein intake, taking supplemental vitamins and calcium every single day.

My hospital stay in 2011 was directly related with my trying to “diet” after my surgery, because I hadn’t been satisfied with the weight loss so far. Because of depleted protein stores, my whole body went into metabolic collapse, and compounded with a hospital acquired infection that gave me sepsis, well you all know how that story ends.

At my lowest weight after my hospital stay (195 lbs) I looked extremely sickly, was extremely pale, had all of my hair falling out, and my teeth were so brittle that they broke left and right, and I finally got most of them pulled and got dentures. I was happy to be under 200 lbs, but in my case I was weak, and still had a long way to go to be fully recovered. Ever since then, I’ve eaten as normally as possible. No dieting, despite my packing on an extra 40 or 50 lbs, because I didn’t want a repeat of 2010/2011. I ate as much protein as possible, like 4 eggs at a time, or a 1 lb. steak in a sitting, etc.

But lately I’ve been feeling sick again. I’m dealing with an indescribable amount of inflammation and joint pain, I’ve been feeling weak, I’ve got sore spots on my tongue that mean it burns like hell when I eat or drink something with the least bit of acid in it (like ketchup, or orange juice, for example). Over the past few years, it has seemed like one medical crisis after another – we’d treat the problem, and in it’s place came two more. So now I have to swallow more pills than an old lady – everything from thyroid medication to painkillers to muscle relaxers to depression and anxiety drugs to medicine for neuropathic pain to sleep medicine for insomnia.

I’ve believed for years that all of this is connected to something that is autoimmune, but I’ve never been able to pinpoint it to one particular thing, and neither have my doctors. And usually my labs are good (not counting the super-low Vitamin D levels that are darn near impossible for me to get the values to a normal level. So for these god knows how many years, I’ve been treating the symptoms rather than the underlying disease. I don’t how, but somehow when I was researching the anomalies in my labs (high Alkaline phosphatase, low Vitamin D, low calcium, low iron, low total protein and albumin, a clotting factor abnormality (in my case, Factor V Leiden)) and I came across the NIH website on Celiac disease. Not only do my lab results almost mirror the markers attributed to Celiac disease, but all these disease processes I’ve been struggling with all these years (abdominal pain and issues, lactose intolerance, bruising easily, depression and anxiety, fatigue, hair loss, a rash that just won’t go away, mouth ulcers, infertility, joint pain, and peripheral neuropathy (which I’ve never understood why I had it, since it’s most closely related to being a side effect of diabetes, which I have never had). Everything just clicked in place, and now it all makes sense. Maybe the reason I’m having so much trouble keeping my protein and vitamin levels up have absolutely nothing to do with me and maybe everything to do with this underlying disease process that on top of surgery-induced malabsorption, is further malabsorbed because the intestinal villi are damaged to the point where I absorb almost nothing, no matter how many supplements I take.

My primary care doctor seems to agree with me. At least as for as ordering the lab tests, and getting me in touch with a gastroenterologist that can do an endoscopic intestinal biopsy to confirm the diagnosis. Or I can go to the dermatologist and have them biopsy the rash (which looks suspiciously very much like dermatitis herpetiformis (a rash that is only present in those with Celiac disease). I’m still waiting for answers. I had the blood drawn Monday to check for antibodies that show how my body reacts to gluten. If that is positive (and sometimes it doesn’t show up on the blood screening, even if you do have Celiac diease), at least that will give me answers. I’d much rather deal with the underlying disease head on (and one that can in almost all cases be managed by a gluten free diet), than continuing to treat the symptoms by throwing drugs, drugs and more drugs at the problems.

I’ve decided that, even if either the blood or biopsy tests come back as negative, I’m going to adopt a gluten free diet. No matter what, it can’t hurt and it can only help. And truthfully? I’m willing to try anything to keep myself from the road of malnutrition and all its ugly side effects I had in 2010/2011. I’ve been told to keep eating gluten throughout the testing and diagnosing period, and it’s been tough because I want to hurry up and get better. So expect (hopefully within the next couple weeks) that many of my posts here may be trying to navigate my way in a world that has gluten everywhere, even in hidden sources. In the meantime, I’ll be posting some dishes I’ve made over the past year or so, that I’m dying to talk about. It’s great being back. :)

Customer Service Fail: The Mad Greek (Whitehall, OH)

Save your money and avoid The Mad Greek like the plague. The calamari we ate on the way home was tasty, but the rest of our $150 (plus $30 tip) takeout order was a hot freezer burned mess. And no seasoning that I could discern. Horrible packaging meant a soup lid busted and soaked everything in the bag. We ordered 2 three dip samplers and they put them all in the same non-divided white styrofoam box that meant that they all mixed together into one gloopy mess. All of the vegetables were freezer burned. The lamb and kofta and the chicken in the mixed grill were overcooked to the point of inedibility. The souvlaki was undercooked and overcooked (it varied depending on which chunk you got). The fish also tasted like it came from a freezer and was so overcooked that even with a fork and knife, I couldn’t cut through it. Baked fish should flake easily. We called them (twice, even! the second time to talk to a manager) to see if they could rectify the problems with the order somehow (even if it meant that we had to drive across town again, since they are on the east side and we are on the west), but the only thing they offered to do is replace the one soup that broke the next time we came in (nevermind it ruined everything else that was in the bag with it, and that by this point, we had decided that there wasn’t going to be a next time). We paid in cash, so it’s not anything we can contest with our credit card company. We got screwed, big time, and hope that our loss acts as a warning that they just do not care about customer service, and if they screw up your order, you’re on your own because they refuse to fix their mistakes.

If you still want to give them a try after reading this (and trust me, you don’t): The Mad Greek, 4210 E. Broad Street, Whitehall, OH 43213, 614-338-0000

 
Mad Greek on Urbanspoon

Are Food Blogs Trying to Kill You?

I came across a really interesting post on Eater today, about how a study was done on recipes posted on a half dozen or so popular food blogs, and how the nutritional data run on these recipes (not provided on the original blogs) showed unhealthy numbers on some of the recipes, so the author of the paper came to the conclusion that unhealthy recipes on food blogs may be a contributory factor to bad health.

Show of hands….how many of you actually don’t know that a recipe (for example) for pound cake that uses 2 sticks of butter in the recipe isn’t something you should be eating every day?

Everything with moderation. Even a person like me, who even at my lowest adult weight has been considered obese and who has a raging eating disorder that I struggle with every day, get that. You can’t eat quinoa and kale and leave everything else out.

People ask me why I haven’t had a blog entry for a few months. Truth of the matter is, the last year has been a struggle for me, and I didn’t think it was fair to bring other people along for the roller coaster ride that has been my life. Alternating with feeling guilty when I ate (because I regained some weight due to some bad choices) and not eating, then remembering that when I stopped eating before my health suffered badly. So then I’d eat, and because food is like a drug or alcohol is to others, I wouldn’t know when to stop because I don’t get the same signals (of fullness) that other people get to tell me when to stop. So I overeat, feel guilty, hate myself for it, and then the whole cycle starts again. But unlike drugs or alcohol (things that you can choose to do or not do), food is something you need to do in order to survive. Sobriety for a person with an eating disorder isn’t not eating – it’s finding a healthy way of eating and sticking to it. The key to my “recovery”, so to speak, has been finding the root cause of my messed up relationship with food and starting from there.

So instead of blogging, I’ve been in therapy. I’ve found that the root cause of everything is based in my childhood. My great-grandmother showing me love by feeding me until I almost burst, with high fat, calorie laden German food, and my mom making me go without when I was back home (FWIW, I think she has her own issues with food, and I think that they way she rationed food with me was just an extension of her own issues – like alcoholism, eating disorders can be a multi-generational thing). So food became all about security for me, feast vs. famine, love vs hate, safe vs. danger. And because my husband has similar issues with food, we’ve been feeding each others addiction – so we both had to get help in order to even begin to heal.The time I would have spent blogging I’ve instead spent in therapy. And for the first time in many, many months, I feel that I’m back in the drivers seat.

I’ve always thought that people were smart enough to know the majority of Paula Deen’s recipes are unhealthy. That’s common sense. That’s why I feel that most food bloggers aren’t doing a disservice to other people by compromising their health. What I’ve found to be far more insidious, far more dangerous are the fit bloggers who make it all about avoiding whole food groups at a time, who make it more about numbers on a scale, more about the size of their clothes, more about how they’re far more disciplined than you because they can run a dozen miles before you even wake up in the morning. These are the people who make judgment calls on other people’s worth based on their size, where they choose to buy their food, what food they decide to eat, people whose own eating disorders are on display in a way that young girls, looking for ways to fit into a society that judges their worth on unrealistic standards of a fashion industry made for a size 0, a size most women will never reach because the price (your health) is far too high. But girls, looking for acceptance in a world where a size 8 is considered plus sized, read these blogs and take their nutritional advice and foster eating disorders of their own. I’m not saying that every person who has a healthy living blog is like this – but there’s a sizeable enough majority that I didn’t want to become one of them. I didn’t want to be that person that caused someone else to do something stupid like not eating, or engaging on a month-long juice or master cleanse that sends your body into starvation mode, where the weight loss is really lean muscle loss, where the number on the scale is dropping but so are you because you lack the strength or stamina to pull your carcass up a flight of stairs. I’ve already been there, I’ve already learned that lesson the hard way. It doesn’t mean that my disordered thought patterns don’t tell me to do that any more. They do, all the time. And that’s a big part of why I’ve avoided going out in public or going to any food related functions for the last year and a half – because part of my regaining a healthy relationship with food meant I had to be abstinent from the things that triggered me. I’ve never lost my passion for blogging – I’ve been keeping an offline (pen to paper) journal that has filled that need, I just didn’t want to be that irresponsible person that caused someone else to try to emulate me right into the hospital. Protein energy malnutrition (kwashiorkor) is not pretty, folks. Those who saw me right after I got out of the hospital may remember the wheelchair, or the fact that I looked like Gollum because almost all of my hair fell out and my teeth were breaking left and right.

I’m okay with my new reality now. I’ve been pretty loquacious on Facebook, and those who have been true friends through thick and thin (you know who you are, I ♥ you all dearly!) have known how to get in touch with me and have actually done so. I also found out that all of a sudden when you can’t or aren’t promoting someone else’s stuff on your blog anymore, or providing them with free advertising, that you find out very quickly who your friends really are. You also know who you are, and that’s been noted as well.

I’ll be back to blogging soon, I promise (and I really mean it this time). I’ve had enough therapy (and am properly medicated now) so that I don’t need to self-medicate with food any more. I’ve still got enough issues to know I’m not a 100% well, but I also know which of my thoughts of food are disordered and which ones are healthy. Part of that meant my becoming comfortable with the new, higher number on the scale, or not being able to fit into some clothes. But now I can walk unassisted, have grown back enough hair to be able to pull it back into a ponytail, and can stand in front of a stove long enough to cook a meal. I’m slowly venturing out into the real world again. It’s been a slow process, but I’m getting there. I’m really glad that some of you have stuck around long enough to be reading this. It means more than you know.

Upcoming Event: Taste of Dine Originals

Mark your calendars for this Thursday (May 9th), as Dine Originals Columbus holds it’s annual fundraising event in partnership with Buckeye Ranch, the Taste of Dine Originals. Representatives from DOC’s 50 member restaurants and 30+ wineries, beer brewers, and micro-distillers serve up food and drink that shows you the best of what each has to offer. It’s an event I’ve enjoyed attending over the last few years, and am continually surprised at the creativity the chefs show when given free reign to display their craft. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the event last year, after missing it in 2011 because I was in the hospital. A deep and heartfelt thanks goes out to the organizers of the event, who have, in previous years, let me attend the event gratis. Since I’m likely not attending this year, and since I completely neglected to do the write-up immediately after last year’s event, I’m hoping that my entry about the 2012 event will convince you that you really want to go – tickets are a little bit steep for most at $100 each, but then again we’re talking about great food and drink from a whole room of independent restaurants. It’s a great way to spend a weekday night, going from table to table, talking to the chefs and noshing at each one, drink in hand while you run into those people that you’re happy to see because it’s been a while, but who you usually only run into at these food events.

I think if one particular chef embraces the philosophy of the independent spirit, it’s Alana Shock. The great thing about dining at her restaurant, Alana’s Food and Wine, is that you never really know what’s going to be on the menu, as it is seasonally driven and each menu is created that day based on what ingredient has inspired her at farmers markets or other local purveyors. Personally, I think her strong suit is in her small plates and risottos, but I’ve never once disliked anything I’ve ever eaten there. The same could be said for her offerings at this event, as she has been known to put out at least a dozen different things (not all at one time, mind you – 3 or 4 at a time, switched out for other things a few times that night). You can’t go wrong here – even if it’s something you’re not familiar with, try it anyway. It’ll be delicious.

Alana Shock from Alana's Food and Wine

One of the new features of last year’s event (in addition to the change of locale from Italian Village to the Capital University Field House in Bexley) is that Edible Columbus hosted an artisan’s market that featured many local farmers and other producers, and which allowed people to talk directly to those who create their food and try various samples in a laid-back environment. Luna Burger and Shagbark (seen below) are just a couple of the many, many others that will be there.

Shagbark Black Beans

I’m usually not a fan of meatless burgers, but Luna Burger will convince you that there are meatless alternatives that are worth seeking out.

Luna Burger

One thing I really dug abut last year’s event was that DeepWood made their own charcuterie plates. Loved loved loved this.

Charcuterie from DeepWood

Some bites are hot, some are cold. One thing I do know for certain is that you’ll be full to bursting long before you get the opportunity to try everything, so plan accordingly. Seriously. I’m still full from last year (nah, not really – but couldn’t eat another thing until lunch the next day).

Squash from Spinelli's Deli

Local fave Katzinger’s Delicatessen had a few different sandwich bites, but this corned beef sung to me.

Corned Beef Bites from Katzinger's Delicatessen

Just in case I haven’t convinced you yet, take a second to check out my set on Flickr with the rest of the pics:

Taste of Dine Originals 2012 pics

At any rate, if you’d like to go, you can get tickets at this link: Taste of Dine Originals tickets. And I believe that they are also available at the door for $100 for unlimited tastings and samples (please correct me on this if I’m wrong, Dine Originals folks). The event will be held from 6-9pm at the Capital University Fieldhouse at 670 Pleasant Ridge Avenue in Columbus. Hope you get a chance to go, if you can only go to a handful of these events each year, this should be one that’s near the top of your list.

Menu Plan Monday: Jan 14-20, 2013

mpmfall1

Well, that deadline definitely went out the window – updating the theme isn’t as easy as I originally intended (since I’m installing a completely new framework, and behind the scenes getting everything to work with everything else is a bit harder than I thought. Luckily, I’m married to an IT professional, but at the moment, he’s married to his job, so I only get visitation (and help w/ the upgrade) on weekends now. I’m excited about the new look, though – I’m getting there slowly but surely and it will definitely be easier to update when I don’t have to go line by line through the code and by extension, getting a crash course in CSS.

We’ve made lots of new dishes in the past few months – becoming a hermit has done wonders for getting us to cook at home since going out to eat isn’t an option at the moment (hopefully that will change soon – I’m getting a bit stir crazy after confining myself to the house since July).

One unfortunate side effect of getting on the right medication is that I’ve managed to pick up a few (uh, like 35-40) unwanted pounds along the way. It’s difficult to tread the fine line between disordered and healthy eating, and I’ve started taking small, gradual steps to dropping the weight, adding in some exercise and cutting out the obvious culprits (way too much fast food, and highly refined sweets). I really need to find something I can stick with, but finding moderation is a challenge.

I’m a day late with our menu plan for the week – but feel good about the fact that we had most of the ingredients for these dishes on hand. We just got a Ninja Cooking System (we got one for my sister and she raved about it, so I got one for myself). I’m going to adapt a few crock pot recipes (including the Transylvanian Goulash we’re making later this week) and see how they turn out.

So, here’s what’s on board for this week:

Monday: Lemon Chicken with Orzo, Green Beans

Tuesday: One Pot Spaghetti, Garden Salad

Wednesday: Bacon Fried Rice

Thursday: Tofu Tortilla Casserole, Authentic Street Style Elotes

Friday: Transylvanian Goulash (in the Ninja)

Saturday: Oven Fried Chicken, Roasted Garlic and Tomato Risotto

Sunday: Manestra with Lamb, Spinach Feta and Mushroom Crustless Quiche

Breakfasts: Meyer Lemon Ricotta Pancakes w/ Blueberries, Slow Cooker Peaches and Cream Steel Cut Oatmeal, Fried Egg & Sliced Avocado Open Face Sandwich

Desserts: Apple Strudel, Mississippi Mud Pie

What do the rest of you have on deck this week? Are you all hating winter as much as I do? Take a second to check out what other Meal Plan Monday participants have on their minds…

Brief Hiatus – Back Soon with a New Look!

Postings have been sporadic around these parts – part of it for reasons that are personal (getting on proper meds to treat my PTSD/depression/anxiety – the difference before and after is like night and day). A big part of it is technical reasons – wanting to switch over to a new theme that will actually work the way it is supposed to, won’t have to be designed to work around the limitations of the ad network I had belonged to. There’s tons of things to write about – so definitely no writer’s block – but don’t want to make it any more frustrating than it already is now. Part of it is because I need these last couple of weeks to get things organized, to get pictures processed, to divvy up the writing between Paul and I. Due to some ongoing dental issues I’ve been dealing with, Paul has picked up my slack and will be the outward face of Columbus Foodie – he’ll be doing restaurant reviews, attending and covering events, judging, the farmers market reports, while I’ll be here at home gardening, organizing, cooking and writing. I think it’s a step in the right direction, and a direction I’ve been pulled in for quite a while now. It’s just a little difficult, when you’ve built your identity around a hobby you can no longer be relaxed enough to enjoy, to make the decision either to keep going with it or letting it fall by the wayside.  There’s enough left to write that neither he nor I are ready to hang it up for good quite yet. But it has become very clear that it can’t quite continue the way it was going: sporadic, inconsistent, and untimely. It does no justice to either the words or the reader, and it just isn’t fair to anyone.

So, the next 3 or so weeks, I’m going to find and then configure a new theme – not sure which one yet, but I do know that I want it to be on a white background so it’s easier to read, navigate the links, etc. It will also integrate social media right into the site to make it more usable. Once I relaunch (on January 1st), I’ll strive to update everyday, but at the very least 3-5 times a week, depending. Maybe more. I’m so far in the weeds with old drafts that I could write nothing but and have a new entry for every day of 2013. I’ll try to consolidate where possible (for example, rather than going week by week for 2012 farmers market reports, I’ll just post a link to a Flickr slideshow that shows our pics from the whole summer, with weekly reports starting again in the spring.

So, thanks for reading, and thanks for continuing to read. I’ll be back before you know it!

I’m also going to implement a better system for getting my additional pages organized (food blog directory, events in Columbus and elsewhere in Ohio, menus for local restaurants) – it’s hopelessly outdated, and I’m hoping to use Outlook Tasks to get the updates done regularly.

So, one last time – I’m so sorry for being a sucky blogger in 2011 and 2012. I so don’t have my crap together right now. Now that I can finally think clearly again (because the panic attacks have stopped), the Herculean task of redesigning/relaunching seems like something I can handle.

Menu Plan Monday: Nov 19-25, 2012

mpmfall1

It’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve done a post for Menu Plan Monday – it’s not that we haven’t eaten or cooked anything – it’s been more that the last couple weeks have flown by without me really taking a moment to breathe. Over the past couple of weeks we have made a few new recipes – namely, the delicious Philly Cheesesteak Sloppy Joes.

This year is going to be a fairly low-key Thanksgiving, just Paul and I. Glad that there won’t be the stress that comes with entertaining, grateful that I have the physical ability to cook this year, and sad that this holiday marks the one year anniversary of what has become a huge fracture in the family dynamic. But also very grateful for the lack of drama that comes with maintaining that particular relationship, which was definitely taking a great toll on my mental health. Also very, very thankful for second chances – my brush with death last year led me to do a lot of healing in my relationship with my father. I will miss him greatly on Thursday, and hope that I will be able to see him and his soon-to-be wife sooner rather than later.

But we decided to keep it really simple this year – he and I both prefer white meat over dark, so we’re just doing a non-stuffed turkey breast this year – it will make eating up the leftovers a breeze rather than a chore. What are the rest of you doing for Thanksgiving? Looking over the link-up for this week’s blog party gives me tons of ideas. Here’s what we have planned this week:

Monday: Pork and Sauerkraut, Kielbasa and Knockwurst, Mashed Yukon Golds

Tuesday: Oven Hot Dogs, Make-Ahead Mac and Cheese, Corn

Wednesday: Homemade Hamburger Helper Stroganoff, Green Beans

Thursday: Roasted TUrkey Breast, Mashed Yukon Golds, Stuffing, Candied Yams, Creamy Brussels Sprouts with Bacon, Cranberry Sauce, Make Ahead Turkey Gravy, Favorite Shoofly Pie, Amish Sugar Cream Pie, Caramel Apple-Pear Crisp

Friday: Turkey Chowder with Wild Rice, Crimini and Pancetta, Thanksgiving Sandwiches

Saturday: Fried Mashed Potato Cakes with Cheddar Mustard Sauce topped with a Fried Egg (Brunch), Sweet Potato Pockets, Chicken Meatballs with Sage and Cranberries and Cranberry Reduction

Sunday: King Crab with Beurre Blanc and Spinach-Corn Orzotto

Menu Plan Monday: Oct 29-Nov 4, 2012

mpmfall1

I’m really glad we started participating in the Menu Plan Monday blog party last week. For the first time in a while, we cooked almost all week. We did a pretty good job of sticking to the schedule, and if we keep this up, we may actually start to put a real dent in our pantry and freezer stores. So we’ve been doing a pretty good mix of old favorites and new recipes – on average, we tried 3 or 4 new recipes last week, and most of them were good enough that we’ll make them again, especially the Elotes Bake – we’re already planning on making it again this week along with Tamale Pie. Each one of the recipes below should be linked to either our blog post when we made it, or the original blog source of a recipe we’d like to try. This week, with the shift downward in temperature, we’ve been craving warm spices and hearty, stick to your bones meat and potatoes type of fare. Be sure to check out what others are making this week. Here’s what we have planned.

Monday: Avocado Melt, Chips

Tuesday: Meatball and Italian Sausage Grinders, Garden Salad

Wednesday: Chicken Tamale Pie, Elote Style Corn Bake

Thursday: Apple Sausage with Sauerkraut, Sauteed Pierogies and Onions

Friday: Chicken Meatloaf (from North Market Poultry and Game), Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans

Saturday: Sugo di Carne with Pasta

Sunday: Chicken Divine (original recipe, which I’ve recently adapted and need to rephotograph – I’ve blogged about it previously when using leftover Thanksgiving turkey to make a Turkey Divine)

New Breakfast/Brunch Recipes: Healthy Pumpkin Pie Muffins with Streusel Topping, Pumpkin Pie French Toast, Kale Frittata

Dessert to Try: Butterfinger Nutter Butter Cheesecake Bars

So what dishes do the rest of you have planned for this week?

Menu Plan Monday: Oct 22-28, 2012

mpmfall1

It’s funny – in the 7 years I’ve been blogging (just had an anniversary pass last week!) I’ve seen the food blog community expand from a thousand or so to tens of thousands. Many come and go within a few months, many others have been around as long (if not longer) than Columbus Foodie has, and have become the foundation and inspiration for many others yet. In the time I’ve been blogging, I’ve tried thousands of recipes, and about 500 or so of those have ended up in our permanent rotation.

I’ve been following the participants of the Menu Plan Monday blog party for ages now, and have often toyed with the idea of participating myself – but always find myself planning meals at the last minute, which results in tons of wasted food and money because I fail to shop and plan around sales and what I have in my own (Mormon-like – no kidding when I say we could eat for a year out of my pantry alone) pantry. So I’m finally making a commitment to planning in advance and in the process, to participate regularly in this hop.

Each one of the recipes below should be linked to either our blog post when we made it, or the original blog source of a recipe we’d like to try. Each week, we like to try a couple new recipes – this week is no exception. Be sure to check out what others are making this week. Here’s what we have planned.

Monday: Italian Wedding Soup, Garden Salad

Tuesday: Baked Tortellini, Wilted Baby Greens

Wednesday: Double Decker Beef Tacos, Rice Cooker Mexican Rice, Elote Style Corn Bake

Thursday: Balsamic Chicken Thighs with Orzo, Sauteed zucchini

Friday: Penne Vodka Pasta

Saturday: Maple Glazed Salmon with Roasted Brown Sugar Sweet Potatoes, Green Beans

Sunday: Lazy Sunday Casserole