Meal Plan Monday

I’m baaaack.  We are still not 100% over here, but I no longer feel like I’m going to die, so there’s that.  My mini is finally able to go back to school.  We are still battling a little yuckiness over here, and SLEEP is our remedy.  I had to wake my daughter up at 8:15 today so she could get ready for school eat breakfast and not be late.  Luckily we live like 5 minutes from her school.  I got 10 hours of sleep last night, and we are usually still taking like 45 minute naps around here in the afternoon.  I usually dread an afternoon nap with my girlie but, man, whatever it is we are battling is taking everything out of use.  The good news is that our appetites are back and I actually had the energy to meal plan for the week.  So buckle up and away we go.

Breakfasts: Shakeology Shakes.  I switched to their vegan formula and I really like it.  It’s like dessert for breakfast, and SO SO SO healthy and good for you.  

Snacks: We have been on a fresh fruit kick over here.  Blackberries, apples, strawberries.  Oh, and a little cheat…the Boom Chicka Pop Popcorn in Sweet and Spicy.  It’s addictive.  Like I can’t stop eating it.  Run out and get yourself some.  Immediately.  You can thank me later.

Lunches: The hubby is out of town, so I’ll be knocking out dinner leftovers for lunch.  Someone’s got to do it.  Don’t want the food to go to waste.  

Dinners:

Whole Wheat Pasta with Veggies and Cream Sauce (I’ll spotlight this recipe later this week.  Spoiler alert…it uses greek yogurt, no cream and TONS of yummy veggies).

Marinated Flank Stead with Chimichurri served with roasted sweet potatoes (my daughter’s fave) and salad.  The chimichurri is everything.  You could put it on a shoe, and it would be delicious.  Herby, garlicky, a tad spicy, tangy…its so good.  
Crockpot chicken tacos with black beans.  This was on the menu last week but didn’t get made.  Instead I consumed a lot of soup…if I was even hungry.  

Pizza night with family (I have family in town this week, so this is our “cheat” meal).  

The rest of the days are leftovers, because it’s hard to cook for 1 adult and a toddler and not have leftovers.  

Stay tuned for that pasta recipe.  There’s something about it that screams Spring!  Happy eating.  

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Tan Tan Noodles

Sorry there was no “Meal Plan Monday” post this week.  The plague pretty much hit my house.  Last week my hubby got his horrible cough checked out…turns out he has bronchitis…AGAIN.  My daughter got sick in the middle of the night last Wednesday.  We’re talking nausea (that’s always fun at 12:30 at night) and a fever.  She held a 102-103 fever for 5 days.  There were times when it dipped down to 99, but man, it’s been rough.  Then it hit me.  No fever or bronchitis.  But the awful cold, borderline flu has not been fun.  That means we’ve been a bit off over here.  If we’ve had an appetite, it wasn’t much.  The only thing that sounded good to me and the hubby was a big ol’ bowl of ramen or pho.  But, being in Boise, the options are a little limited.  Especially around our house.  I mean, there is a great place downtown, but hopping in the car with ALL OF US sick sounded awful.  And the idea of standing over a stove to do something complicated sounded awful.  So off to Pinterest I went.  And I found THIS RECIPE for Tan Tan Noodles.  The picture looked amazing.  The steps looked easy.  And, bonus, we have most of the ingredients on hand.  A quick trip to the store for like 3 things, and I was on my way to spicy broth and hot soup heaven.  

I, of course, made some changes to the recipe.  So here’s what I did.  Bonus, all the ingredients are available at the regular grocery store!  No random trips to an Asian market.  And, it takes less than 30 minutes to make.  That’s a win all around.

Soup:

4 cups of chicken stock

2 tablespoons garlic chili paste

2 tablespoons sesame paste (I used Tahini Paste from Trader Joe’s–I always have it on hand for hummus)

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon sugar

salt and pepper to taste
Meat
1/2 lb ground pork

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 tablespoon minced shallots

1/2 tbsp chili garlic sauce

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 teaspoon vegetable oil

1 teaspoon sesame oil

1 cup sliced baby bok choy

salt and pepper to taste

noodles of your favourite variety (I used ramen)
sliced green onions for garnish

Heat up the chicken stock and stir in the chili garlic sauce, sesame paste, soy sauce, and sugar. Taste and season accordingly. If you feel you need more of one ingredient or another, feel free to add them in. Keep the soup on a low simmer while you cook the meat.
In a small wok or frying pan, heat up the teaspoon of vegetable oil over medium high heat and add the minced garlic and shallots. Fry until fragrant, but not browned. Add the ground pork and cook until the pork is browned and there is no pink. Add the chili garlic sauce, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Taste and season accordingly. Add bok choy and let wilt in pan for a minute or two.  It will wilt more in the hot broth later.  Remove from the heat and keep warm while you cook the noodles.
Cook the noodles according to the packaging and drain. Place the noodles in a bowl and top with broth and ground pork. Garnish with green onions and enjoy!

Here’s what the chili garlic sauce looks like.  It’s in the “Asian Foods” aisle at your grocery store.  

And here’s the finished product.  Looking at the picture, I’m making a mental note to learn how to take better food pictures.  It doesn’t look that appetizing, but I promise you it is.  Note: This is spicy…definitely clears the sinuses.  I love spicy, so I didn’t have a problem with it.  It was a bit spicy for hubby, but that didn’t stop him from eating everything in his bowl.  Just adjust your chili garlic sauce to suit your tastes.  

Pineapple Cashew Fried Rice

This was a meal that was on my meal plan this week, and I got the recipe from my health coach.  I didn’t want to post the recipe because I knew I would make some adjustments to the recipe to make it my own.  Holy moly!  This was sooo delicious.  Like, I wanted to lick my plate, but I don’t want to teach my 4 year old bad habits.  What’s even better is I have most of the ingredients on hand ALL THE TIME.  Literally the only thing I had to buy was the coconut milk and pineapple.  Even the hubby approved–and said it was better than the one from our favorite Thai restaurant.  Note: I made this with veggies I have on hand.  I didn’t have red bell pepper (which I usually do), so i subbed carrots and zucchini.  Anyway, here’s the recipe:

Ingredients:

1 cup brown jasmine rice (I get mine at Trader Joe’s, but plain brown rice will work too)

1 cup light canned coconut milk

1/2 cup fresh pinapple juice (this I didn’t have, so I just pureed pineapple with a bit of water and it worked great)

1/2 cup water

2-4 tbsp. coconut oil (the original recipe calls for 5, but I cut way down to just what I needed.  It ended up being about 2.5)

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1/2 sweet onion, chopped

4 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 tsp freshly grated ginger (I use those frozen grated ginger cubes in a pinch, but I actually had fresh on hand)

2 cups cubed pineapple (I did more like 1 because it was what I had left).

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 1/2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce

4 green onions, sliced

1/2 cup cashews, some chopped if desired

Directions:

In large saucpan, add rice coconut milk, juice and water, stirring to combine.  Bring to boil, then cover and reduce to simmer.  Cook util the rice has absorbed all the liquid–about 20-30 minutes.  The time will differ depending on your rice.  Let the rice cool completely (I didnt do this).  But this step can be done ahead of time.

In large skillet or wok, melt 1 tbsp of coconut oil over medium-high heat.  Andd onions and peppers with a pinch of salt, then stir and cook for 2-3 minutes until slightly soft.  Add in garlic and ginger, stirring for 30 seconds.  Remove veggies and set aside in large bowl.  Increase heat to high.  Add more coconut oil if needed, and add pineapple chunks.  Stir and cook until golden, about 5-6 minutes.  When done, add to the bowl with the veggies.

If needed add more coconut oil to pan, add eggs, and stir entire time they cook, scrambling eggs.  Break them apart as much as desired.  Take out of pan and place in separate bowl/plate.

Keep the high heat under the pan and add about 1 tbsp coconut oil (or more if desired).  Add in the cooked rice, tossing to coat, and then let sit for 1-2 minutes to crisp up and get that yummy golden color on it.  Stir, breaking apart any pieces and repeat the browning for another 1-2 minutes.  Repeat again until all rice is golden in color or to your desired “doneness”.

Reduce heat to low and stir in the soy sauce.  Remember to start small…you can always add more but you can’t take it away.  Add the veggies and egg back in.  Then stir in the green onions and cashews.  Taste and adjust any seasonings as you see fit.

This can be served alone as a YUMMY vegetarian dish, or with shrimp, chicken, pork, or we put ham in ours.  Doesn’t it look so yummy…even with my awful phone picture?!

 

 

Meal Plan Monday


Here’s the plan for the week!

Monday: Taco Salad–I usually use ground turkey and MY OWN taco seasoning.  If you haven’t stopped using the packaged (with all that sodium), I highly suggest you do.  Making your own taco seasoning is so easy.  There are tons of recipes on Pinterest you can use for inspiration.

Tuesday: I’m trying out a recipe that my health coach gave me.  Trying to decide if we will actually use jasmine brown rice, or cauliflower rice.  And it’s actually Pineapple Cashew Fried Rice, not coconut. Oops. 

Wednesday: Sheet Pan Chicken–my daughter can’t get enough of this recipe.  Any time I find a recipe where she clears her plate and asks for seconds, it’s a win!

Thursday: My daughter loves the flavors of honey and garlic together for meat marinades, so that’s where I’ll go for Thursday.  I realize I didn’t add a side.  I think we’ll have some edamame salad like from last week’s lunches.

Friday: This Wheatberry Waldorf Salad looks too good to pass up!  I will sub pecans for walnuts since I’m not a walnut fan, and probably reduce the blue cheese amount.  Even hubby is looking forward to this one.  The trick is to have my mini not eat all the grapes in the house before it’s time to make this.  Easier said than done.

Saturday: One day a week we always do an eat out or take out as a family date.  

Sunday: Easter Dinner with the Family.  I wonder who’s making it…I haven’t bought anything so I hope not me.  

Meal Plan Monday

Today is proving to be a busy one already.  I’ve dropped off my mini at school, gone grocery shopping, put everything away and made lunches for today.  I have about 30 minutes before I need to go pick her up and then I have an afternoon of appointments, and craziness ahead.  Also, my new challenge group starts today and I’ve got a workout to fit in too.  So let’s get to what’s on the menu for the week.    This will be a loose menu since my in-laws are expected on Thursday, and that always changes dinner plans so, seat belts buckled and let’s go.

Breakfasts: Shakeology Shakes

Lunches: This Edamame, Corn & Farro Salad.  It looks heavenly!

Screen Shot 2017-04-03 at 10.47.11 AM (via)

Snacks: Yogurt with almonds and fruit, apples with PB or other Nut Butter, String Cheese, Trail Mix.  You know…the usual easy grab and go suspects.

Dinners:

Pressure Cooker Chicken Picatta with cauliflower rice and spinach salad.  Yes, I know I made chicken picatta last week, it’s a favorite in this house.  But this one is different.  It’s not your typical Picatta-y (yep, made up that word), but it’s yummy.  And my 4 year old eats it, so…

Bruschetta Grilled Chicken Zoodle Bowl  I’m taking a Trader Joe’s shortcut and using their Bruschetta sauce.  Have you ever used it?  It’s delicious, and full of garlic…and already made for me.

Smoky Kale and Black Bean Tostadas.  This is actually a Blue Apron recipe, but I’m using kale instead of the original swiss chard.  Man, it’s yummy.  My 4 year old won’t touch this.  She’ll probably have a quesadilla.

Screen Shot 2017-04-03 at 10.56.22 AM (image via Blue Apron)

Beefy Tomato Soup.  This tastes like lasagna in a bowl.  My daughter LOVES it.  It’s comforting, and easy.

The other days of the week will be, I’m sure, leftovers one night, we have a Date Night out to celebrate our anniversary thrown in there since the in-laws are here to babysit.    And then on Sunday is our normal Family Dinner but with my parents, the in-laws, and us.  Should be fun!

What’s on your menu this week?