Saturday, July 18, 2015

The Menu Week 2

The Meal Plan This Week:

#11 - Grilled Grouper with Basil Lime Pistou
#12 - Roasted Bell Pepper, Olive, and Caper Crostini

We had a late lunch so this light fast fish dinner was perfect.  The crostini was very good but we got a late start on it so I cut the cooking time on the peppers in half.  I think it would have been even more delicious if we let them roast a little deeper.  The crostini would also be good with a layer of goat cheese spread under the tapenade. Feeling very fortunate tonight to have a daughter who likes fish and a husband who knows how to grill it!


Serve the roasted bell pepper tapenade on a slice of toast with a layer of goat cheese and fried egg on top.  Delicious!

#13 - High Plains Steaks
#14 - Grilled Romaine with Blue Cheese Dressing
#15 - Steamed Carrots with Garlic Ginger Butter

Another good grill night.  The marinade of the steaks consisted solely of yellow mustard, worcestershire and salt and pepper.  Very quick, simple, tasty and economical.  I don't know that I am a fan of grilled romaine but the blue cheese dressing was pretty good.  I had designs on trying to steam the carrots in foil packets on the grill but unfortunately ran out of foil.  Ah foiled again!  So I just threw them in the rice cooker/steamer.  We also substituted blood orange infused olive oil ffor the butter.  Caitlyn was a fan of the steak which she dipped in ketchup of course.

Just a little computer game before dinner.
#16 - Summer Squash Pizza

Took a few liberties with the pizza recipe but definitely enjoyed the inspiration and the finished product.  It was not substantial for us as a main dish so we heated up some frozen mandarin chicken from Trader Joes to round out the meal and that worked pretty well.

Grilled Chicken Caesar on a Skewer
Grilled Salmon with Tangy Cucumber Sauce
Peas and Pods

Groceries bought to you by this little peanut...

Friday, July 17, 2015

Veggie Tostadas

Tonight's Meal Plan

#9 - Veggie Tostadas

Tonight we tried this meatless main.  It's nothing particular to write home about but tasted fine, was a breeze to prepare, and I liked the pickeled jalapenos for a little extra flavor, and the feta cheese to lighten things up versus traditional greasy cheddar.  These would not be bad with a little squeeze of lime juice as well.


Turns out these leftover ingredients make a great base for a nine layer dip (beans, salsa, sour cream, cheddar cheese, avocado, cherry tomatoes, black olives, cilantro, and jalapenos).  Serve with Tortilla chips for dipping.  My lunch today!  I'm counting this as recipe #10.  Counting it with every delicious bite.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Chicken Sate with Peanut Sauce and Cucumber Salad

Tonight's Meal Plan:

#7 - Chicken Sate with Peanut Sauce
#8 - Shaved Cucumber and Red Onion Salad

Well I took some photos of tonight's dinner but accidentally deleted them before I could post them.  Really loved this meal though.  The peanut sauce was delicious and it's hard to find good chicken recipes for the grill that don't just come bone dry.  This one is definitely a keeper.  Caitlyn thought that the chicken on a stick was pretty fun too.  She wasn't adventurous enough to try the peanut sauce or the salad but she ate three strips of chicken so I wasn't going to complain.  Eight new recipes down for the week.  I've already started planning next week's menu and may have my grocery list together before the week even starts.  Now if only I could figure out what to make for lunches!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

TJ Pork Tenderloin with Lemon and Garlic Green Beans

Tonight's Meal Plan:

Trader Joe's Peppercorn Garlic Marinated Pork Tenderloin
#6 - Green Beans with Lemon and Garlic

Tonight was a super simple convenience meal with premarinated pork tenderloin from Trader Joes and a simple side dish of green beans prepared with a little lemon, garlic, and love.  Easy and delicious on all accounts.  Also proud of the fact that we've tried six new recipes in the last three days.  Loving this home cooked fine dinning spree.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Salmon & Stuffed Tomatoes

Tonight's Meal Plan

#3 - Smoked Salmon with Mustard and Dill
#4 - Cheese and Olive-Stuffed Tomatoes
#5 - Grilled Potato Wedges

Yay, I cooked delicious food two nights in a row!  Well, I prepared delicious food two nights in a row.  Tonight was grillables so I just prepped everything and then let Don cook it off on the barbecue.  Really enjoyed each of these recipes.  The woodchips added the most delicious smoky flavor to the salmon and the mustard dill glaze reminded me of a delicious tarter sauce without all the calories. Caitlyn of course dipped her salmon in ketchup.  Hey, the girl loves salmon, I'm not going to complain. The cheese and olive stuffed tomatoes were a definite treat and we served the leftover stuffing on crackers.  So yes, I recommend this dinner and will certainly make again.  

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Fruity Shrimp Cocktail with Ginger Basmati Rice

Tonight's Meal Plan:

#1 - Shrimp Cocktail with Tropical Fruit Salsa
#2 - Ginger Basmati Rice

Definitely enjoyed putting this meal together.  The tropical fruit salsa was a winner.  I am not a fan of papaya so omitted that and added a persian cucumber instead.  It all came together well with the shrimp.  Unfortunately I'm not a huge fan of shrimp but I can tolerate it and Don really liked it.  So I would recommend this recipe to anyone who likes shrimp.  I felt like a real chef roasting and peeling the peppers myself.

Coming Back to Cooking Light

I've decided to get back on the Cooking Light wagon again.  Cooking Light set the pace for us in our dining habits since early on in our marriage and was instrumental in meal planning and cooking preparation for almost the first decade of our togetherness.  The first couple of years of parenthood with two parents working full time definitely drained a lot of the former creativity and inspiration I took from the kitchen.  Now that we have an almost three year old with a little more capability and a little more time and energy I've decided to come back to my roots.

I thought about lots of different monumental goals I could set for myself like A Year of Cooking Light or 100 recipes in 100 days or something that look and sound really impressive.  But really this is a much simpler scenario of I have acquired a bunch of cookbooks that I love and I want to get back to finding fun in the kitchen and making family dinners the cornerstone of our sacred time together.  

So I figure I'll snap a few photos, share our meal plans, review some recipes, and maybe even suggest a few table fellowship ideas.  And, for every 25 recipes I post/try, I'll reward myself with something cool.