Sunday, August 31, 2008

First Week Of School, part one: Meal Plan

Hooray for the arrival of the first week of school! Like everyone else, we've been bustling around the last few weeks trying to get everything in order...

Today we're cleaning the house and trying to prep as many foods as possible. This is the first year I will have all 3 boys at the table, and I'd love to have every day free to be with them instead of feeling stressed about getting dinner made and on the table.

Since it's the end of the month, the grocery envelope is close to empty and we're using up the last of the foods in our freezer--ground beef for the pastie and meatloaf, one lone flank steak, and some trout that our neighbor caught and gifted us with. Seasonal veggies, rice and legumes round out the remaining meals!

Here's our plan for the week:
Sunday: Indian spiced rice (with chicken)
Monday: Fresh pasta and pesto
Tuesday: Pastie
Wednesday: Split pea soup
Thursday: Marinated flank steak and grilled vegetables
Friday: Fish pie
Saturday: Basil/sundried tomato meatloaf and roasted fingerlings

...and how about one of my favorite recipes?

Indian Spiced Rice
This recipe is from a lovely book that my mother bought for me when I was in college: Vegetarian Planet, by Didi Emmons. It has become my favorite meal to make the day after roast chicken. Because of the lentils, it's a complete protein on its own, but Justin's one of those bodies that requires animal protein on a daily basis, so I just chop up whatever chicken remains from the previous night and stir it into the finished rice, and the two pair beautifully. Yum! (and so economical, too! These ingredients cost pennies!)
1 tablespoon oil
1 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon minced, fresh ginger
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 1/4 cups uncooked jasmine rice
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dried lentils
3 cups water
1 large potato (russet or sweet) or 2 small (reds or yukons)
1 small bell pepper, seeded and minced
1/2 cup peas
3 tablespoons raisins
In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, until softened. Add the ginger, garlic, coriander, cardamom, nutmeg and cumin. Cook for 3 minutes more, stirring frequently.
Add the rice and saute 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the salt and lentils, then stir in 3 cups water. Add the potato and cover the pan. Bring the mixture to a boil, then turn the heat to the lowest setting. After 10 minutes, lift the lid and add the bell pepper, peas and raisins. Stir well, then cover the rice again. Cook 10 minutes more, or until the rice, potatoes and lentils are tender.


karissa said...

Yum-I put that on next week's menu to try it out! Thinking of you bunches as we ready for our first go of school at home!

karissa said...

Nice, I missed 'get' before ready...maybe I'm not competent enough for this homeschool thing after all :-)