Thursday, March 18, 2010

Menu Plan

I failed to mention one of the things I have been working on, which is a meal plan. I have done this a few times before. Basically we go through experimental phases, where I am always learning new recipes, trying new ingredients, shopping on whim. RJ loves these times. He was particularly fond of the lemon parsley pork. After a while, however, I get tired of the disorganization and the erratic grocery bills, and I get hungry for some of my tried and true favorites. There are a few other reasons to plan your meals as well.

1. We can learn, one meal at a time, how to make things more from scratch. Instead of experimenting with completely new recipes each week, we get to perfect one thing at a time. I would rather have the perfect homemade tortillas, than a new mediocre meal every Sunday.

2. It is rare that I go to the store without buying Lettuce, Tomatoes, Avocados, and Onions. This makes these natural choices as we start our garden. Instead of standing in the seed aisle trying to figure out all of the ways I can work radishes into our menu, we go with a plan, knowing that when those plants come up, they will be eaten.

3. When one of our favorite ingredients goes on sale I can stock up, confident that we have several recipes for it to go in, so we won't be sick of eating the same thing over and over.

So here is our plan: I will work to add these recipes over the next few weeks. You will see they are all very simple. My family loves to cook that way. We are not very fancy.

Brisket with Party Potatoes and Green Beans
Gore family Beef Tacos on Corn Tortillas
Chicken Alfredo with rolls or pasta
Katy's Chicken Tacos
Sausage with Squash and Potatoes
Mexican Chef Salad

Steak with Sour Cream Potatoes and Asparagus
Oven fried Chicken with fresh fruit
Barnett family Burritos on Flour Tortillas with Beans
Chicken Fried Steak with Mashed Potatoes and English Peas
BBQ Chicken with Black Eyed Peas and Deviled Eggs
Tristan's Pizza (RJ's new favorite)

These are not strictly assigned to days of the week. We usually eat at small group one night a week right now. Everything is flexible. We can try new things for RJ whenever we want, but this provides two week's worth of meals that we can cook well, and that share a lot of inexpensive ingredients. It brings order out of chaos, and makes me say yum!

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