Welcome to “Winter Break” week here at the Frugal Upstate Village Homestead. Yes-that’s right, the kids have a full 3 days of school off this week (they don’t get the full week anymore). You can bet that throws a few monkey wrenches in the week’s plans around here.
1. Our heavy activity nights are usually Monday and Wednesday–but since those are vacation days all the activities are not happening this week. So my evenings are actually a bit less rushed. Except for Friday, when we are going to the Blue and Gold Banquet for the Cub Scouts. We’ve still got our regular piano lessons on Friday and I’m probably going to help out with the Lenten Luncheon at our church on Thursday.
2. Yankee Bill was able to take Monday and Tuesday off so we are doing a few fun family things. Today we are going bowling in the afternoon, and tomorrow (Tues) we are taking the kids to an indoor water park (shhh. . . they don’t know yet!). Wednesday we’ve booked some Dr. appts in town, plus I’ve got my monthly blogger meetup. I’m going to have to bring the kiddos along on that one, which is fine 🙂
3. For Lent I decided to give up white flour, candy and sweets. Yeah. We’ll see how that goes! Anyway, that means that I won’t want to do any meals where the pasta/bread is mixed in with the vegetables/meat to the point where it’s hard for me to eat around them. (for example I can make a spaghetti sauce and serve it to the family over pasta but serve mine over veggies or a whole grain. If I make tuna casserole it’s going to be hard to pick the pasta out!)
4. I’m actually doing pretty well with keeping up with the stuff in the fridge. Right now I’ve only got a few things that “have” to be used up. There is fresh broccoli, some rice and about 1/3 a head of cabbage. We also have plenty of eggs (since I buy a couple dozen a week from a local farm), a store bought pie crust, some sour cream and a package of hot dogs (which is weird because my kids don’t really eat hot dogs).
5. Last week a few plans went wonky and I never made the Pinto Beans with Kick or the Marmalade Dijon Pork. Also a couple of weeks ago I wanted to make the Spinach Egg Strata and wound up doing an alternate meal. I’d like to work all of those back in–especially the strata as I’d like to take a picture to go with the recipe.
Taking all that into account here is my game plan:
Monday: Smoked Pork Picnic with Dijon Marmalade Sauce, Oven Fried Potato Wedges and Roasted Broccoli
I had a smoked pork picnic in the freezer, so I’ve got that going in the crockpot with a bit of cider. That’s the fun thing about buying a half a pig from a CSA–I wind up with interesting cuts of meat that I’d probably never think to just buy. Anyway, I’ll mix up some of the Blood Orange Marmalade (I’ve still got some that wasn’t canned in the fridge) with some Dijon mustard to make a sauce/glaze to go alongside the pork. I’ll take some of the potatoes we were given which are still in the basement and make Oven Fried Potato Wedges, and I’ll toss the broccoli with some oil and then roast it in the oven.
This is my pork meal for the week.
Tuesday: Pintos with Kick and Light and Tasty Cornmeal Biscuits
We’ll be out of the house for a chunk of Tuesday, so a crockpot meal works great! I’ll soak the beans tonight and tomorrow morning they will be ready to toss into the slow cooker to make my Pintos with Kick. I’ll just whip up some Light and Tasty Cornmeal Biscuits for the family to eat with it (although I’ll be skipping the bread).
This is my bean and my meatless meal for the week.
Wednesday: Venison Vegetable Soup and Light and Tasty Cornmeal Biscuits
There are more things going on Wednesday that will make a cooking session a bit difficult-so another slow cooker meal would be ideal. I’ll make a venison vegetable soup, I can use some of the cabbage in there as well as frozen/dehydrated veggies. Just before serving I’ll add in some of the rice (it would dissolve if I left it in there all day). We’ll have leftover biscuits from Tuesday night-if not we’ll just use some homemade bread instead.
This is my venison and soup meal for the week.
Thursday: Old Fashioned Salmon Loaf, Greens, Carrots and Citrus Rice
I’ll make up the Old Fashioned Salmon Loaf out of canned salmon I keep on hand (and use homemade bread crumbs as well). The greens are canned from last spring, and the carrots are from the winter garden (they are under about 6 inches of mulch right now). Citrus and rice both seem to go with fish, so I’ll have my Citrus Rice recipe.
This is my fish meal for the week.
Friday: Cheeseburger Quiche
Friday is the Blue and Gold banquet and I have to bring a dish to pass. I’m going to make a baking pan full of Cheeseburger Quiche, which is likely to be a hit with the boys and can be cut into small “buffet” sized servings.
Saturday: Leftover Buffet (or Fried Rice)
By Saturday we’ll probably have a bunch of leftovers, so we’ll do a leftover buffet. If we DON”T have enough to make a meal, then I’ll work all the bit and pieces into some sort of vaguely Asian fried rice deal.
Sunday: Homemade Pizza
I’ll make pizza using my Pizza Hut Crust Clone recipe of course!
Are you interested in learning more about menu planning? Check out my post “Why Plan a Weekly Menu” .