Monday, November 22, 2010

This Week's Dinner Menu

I know it has been a while since I posted a dinner menu. We have been trying to eat healthier, but that means a lot of the same from South Beach or other various diet cookbooks. And, my husband traveled all of last week, so pretty much we ate whatever the boys wanted and I foudn something in the fridge. So, here is this week's fast menu.

Sunday - (Dinner at Mom's) Flank steak, Grandma's Rice, kabocha squash, and Pear & Gorgonzola Salad
Monday - Crunchy Chicken Tenders with Herb-Buttermilk Dressing, broccoli, raw carrots, fruit
Tuesday - Broccoli Cheddar Soup, bread bowls, simple salad, fruit
Wednesday - At mom's prepping for Thanksgiving
Friday - Beef "Pasties", broccoli or zucchini, cottage cheese and tomato salad
Saturday - might be back at mom's for a farewell dinner to my sisters!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Thanksgiving Planning

I am starting to pull together ideas for our Thanksgiving dinner. Being from a family that loves food, we tend to try new recipes each year until we find the one that we love! I know some families that eat the same basic, bland stuffing every year - not us! We have made so many different stuffings over the years, it is so fun to sit down to dinner on Thanksgiving.

My dad with one of his turkeys

Here are some of the things I have had my eye on:
Baked Brie with Pepper Jelly
Tomato and Goat Cheese Tart
Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Cranberry Pistachio Pesto
Butternut Squash Gratin
If you don't want or need a full turkey, try Bobby's Spice Rubbed Turkey Breast

Our Traditional "Go-To Rolls" (I really need to separate this recipe out, so I can find it easier!)
Parker House Rolls, or Bobby's rolls got rave reviews
Sweet Onion Rolls (I found these a few years ago, I still haven't made them. Maybe, this is my year!)

For dessert, there is one essential pie for our Thanksgiving table - Banana Cream. Years ago, when my grandparents moved to Michigan, they celebrated with families from Church because their family was in Utah. The woman who always made the pies, brought Banana Cream pie every year. Now, it has become a tradition that we cannot go without! I am wondering if I can sneak in this variation this year: Banana Carmel Cream Pie.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Green Smoothie Breakfast

This may sound strange to many out there, but I have been drinking and really enjoying a Green Smoothie each morning this week. I had a friend who told me she was drinking them about a year a half ago, then, a woman in our Bountiful Baskets co-op said that her family drinks them too. And, I decided to give it a try since we have so much spinach and greens coming our way.{Megan's Green Smoothie}
juice of 1 orange
2 1/2 inches of banana, diced
3-4 frozen strawberries
1 tsp Truvia sweetener
2 C packed spinach (or other greens)
a couple Tbsp water

Layer in your blender with spinach closest to the blade. Blend until well mixed. Add water as necessary to get it to spin, or to a good drinking consistency. Enjoy!

159 cal, 1g fat, 37g total carb, 4g fiber, 9g sugar, 4g protein

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Bountiful Baskets: This Week's Basket

No pictures this week, I was helping longer than normal at the site today. Then, my husband was headed out to run errands, so I quickly divided our basket so that he could take my parents their share.
This is what we received this week:
5 lbs of Russet potatoes
5 large turnips (so excited!)
2 acorn squash
2 bunches of celery
2 eggplant (1 was my volunteer extra)
1 bunch of spinach
7 bananas
6 persimmons
5 Granny Smith apples
4 pears

So, here is what I'm thinking . . . I was surprised at how many people have not had parsnips. Although, ten years ago, I hadn't either. My favorite way to prepare them is to roasted them together with carrots, or you could try sweet potatoes as well. Here is a good recipe to try if you would like specific instructions. Or, try one of these ideas:
Risotto with Roasted Butternut Squash, Parsnips and Turnips
Smashed Parsnips with Mascapone Cheese
Annabel Karmel's Quick Chicken Couscous from the "First Meals Cookbook"
Parsnip Muffins or Good Morning Muffins

And, here is my favorite recipe for Grilled Eggplant and Goat Cheese Salad. It is to die for! And, I don't usually like eggplant.

Stay tuned for recipes for Stuffed Acorn Squash and a delicious Pear Salad.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Kabocha Squash Orzotto

I used my Kabocha Squash from Bountiful Baskets for Orzotto. Yeah, you read that right - Orzotto. It is like Risotto in method only faster.It Kabocha Squash was really hard to cut through, at least, for me. So, I prepped the squash one day and threw together a quick dinner when it became obvious that this would take too long and the children were starving!
I would recommend that 1) you start early if you try this, 2) you look for squash already cubed, or 3) you substitute butternut squash for the kabocha.
However, the end result was delicious!
{Kabocha Squash Orzotto}
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1 – 2 cups diced squash
1 ½ cups orzo
½ cup dry white wine, or extra chicken broth
3 cups chicken broth
¼ cup heavy cream
1/3 cup grated parmesan
fresh thyme and basil
salt and pepper, to taste

In a heavy-bottomed medium sauce pan, heat the olive oil. Add the onions and squash, sauté until beginning to soften. Add the orzo and toast for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the wine and cook until absorbed.

Gradually add the stock, stirring frequently. Bring to a simmer and cover; cook for 8-10 minutes until liquid is almost absorbed and orzo or barley is tender. Remove from heat.

Stir in the cream, parmesan and herbs. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Dill & Cottage Cheese

As my husband and I spend more time trying to revamp our eating habits, I am having to be more creative with what we eat. I went back to this dip recipe from a dear friend of mine to help us with that. This recipe is easy to whip up, and you probably already have the ingredients in your kitchen.{Dill & Cottage Cheese Vegetable Dip}
recipe adapted from my dear friend, Carol Loveless
1 C cottage cheese
1/4-1/3 C mayonnaise
1/2 T dried minced onion
1/2 T parsley
1/2 t dried dill
1/2 t seasoning salt

Mix all ingredients together. Place in the refrigerator for several hours prior to serving. Serve with vegetables.

Take Two: My mother often eats cottage cheese and tomatoes as a salad. I thought this dill dip would be a great way to add a little extra flavor to that dish!
{Tomato & Cottage Cheese Salad}
dill & cottage cheese dip
quartered cherry tomatoes
diced carrots

Top cottage cheese with tomatoes and carrots. Mix together and enjoy!


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