Menu Plan Monday: Jan 14-20, 2013

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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…

Menu Plan Monday: Nov 19-25, 2012

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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

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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

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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