So, I'm in Week 2 of planning out dinner menus for the upcoming week. I kid you not when I say it is going unbelievably well. We have already saved a fortune in wasted food, and about 14 trips to the store to acquire missing ingredients.
I thought I would share the menus for the first two weeks, and show you where I am getting the ideas from.
Since I know how to cook already, I really just need ideas, and maybe a picture to inspire me. My favorite recipe idea site is www.myrecipes.com which aggregates all the recipes published in Sunset, Southern Living, Cooking Light, Coastal Living, and Real Simple magazines. The pictures are lovely, and I can browse about a million ideas and make my own menu plan for the week. I also like www.allrecipes.com
Here are the first two week's worth of Menu plans.
- Broiled salmon with a lemon and parsley sauce, fancy-ass potatoes, and grilled asparagus.
- Lemon Chicken stir fry with red peppers, Bok-choi and whole wheat noodles
- Chicken Parmesan with Orso, marinara, and broccoli
- BBQ flank Steak with garlic roasted green beans, octopus salad, and garlic bread
- Rare roasted Lamb and tomato sandwich on grilled chibatta with Blueberry crumble dessert.
- Chicken and healthy summer veggie tostadas with salsa, guacamole and sour cream
- Flank Steak and balsamic roasted cherry tomato sandwiches on grilled ciabatta with grilled potatoes
- Seared Lamb chops with fresh mint and pea risotto
- Creamy Beef stroganof with egg yolk pasta and steamed Asparagus
- Chicken fried Steak with buttermilk biscuits, gravy, peas and corn
- Brazilian Black beans and rice with fresh salsa and baked bananas
- Garlic grilled prawns with Sauteed Broccoli and astonishingly expensive potatoes
Once I have decided on the Menu for the week, I make my shopping list based on that menu. I keep A lot of stuff on hand in the pantry and in the deep freeze, so my weekly shop does not always include staples or meat.
Here is my shopping list for last week, it includes everything I will need for the dinners, plus some of the staples we use for other meals and Snacks around here
- Omani cherry tomatoes
- Ciabatta or other sexy bread
- Omani Mushrooms
- Egg pasta
- sour cream
- Baby asparagus
- Extra fruit if it looks good
- frozen peas and corn (Watties!)
- fresh herbs if they are nice
- Black beans (canned)
- 1 cuke
- red and yellow peppers
- lamb chops
- chicken broth
- Sibou Prawns
- whole meal sliced bread
- fancy potatoes
- frozen blueberries
- flank steak
- Juice (Big and Small)
- Whole meal flour (stone ground, extra strong)
- olive oil for cooking ans XVO for dressings
- Jam and Marmalade
I try to do a quick check of the pantry and the freezer to see if I am running low on any staples such as sugar, coffee, vinegar, anchovies, etc.. and add them to my list. I usually sop at Sultan Center, with occasional trips to Al Fair (hideously expensive potatoes, Popsicles) or Carrefour (Duck Confit, pretentious cheeses)
So far I'm really happy with how it's worked out. We are eating healthier, and I only have to face the grocery store once a week if I'm lucky. Stone is delighted, because he really loves a home cooked meal, and having a slightly less surly wife.