It feels like spring has finally sprung here in Upstate NY. I am sort of afraid to say that too loudly as it might scare away the beautiful weather. It’s actually 70 degrees here today, although it’s supposed to drop down to the low 60’s for the rest of the week. That’s ok–I’ll take it!
Here are the things I’m working with this week:
1. It’s warmed up, and supposed to be sunny all week until Friday & Saturday (when we get a bit of rain). That means I can use the grill and maybe consider some more “spring-y” meals.
2. We aren’t too bad on the activities this week. I actually only have to run into town once, which is a blessing after the last few weeks. The kids have piano, Buddy has scouts, and Yankee Bill is going away for the weekend. I may actually have time to cook some decent meals (I’ve felt so dang rushed for the last 4 weeks or so).
3. In the fridge I have some carrots I dug from the garden last week, as well as lettuce and grapes. There is a half jar of spaghetti sauce, hardboiled eggs, regular eggs, a gallon and a half of milk, and a bunch of open and half used jars of pickles, jellies and fruits. There is some bread getting stale that should be used in something, as well as a nice loaf of “hearty” multi grain bread that Yankee Bill picked up over the weekend. In the freezer are frozen chicken, pork, beef and fish, as well as some veggies from last year’s garden.
4. There are still beets, carrots and Jerusalem artichokes out there that can be dug. We are starting to see the green onions, garlic and chives poking through the mulch, so I can snip a bit here and there. ( I also see the buds of the rhubarb poking through–sure sign of spring!)
Taking all that into account here is my game plan:
Monday: Venison Hot Dogs, Potato Salad, Corn on the Cob and Roasted Green Beans
We’ll grill some of the Venison Hot Dogs out of the freezer tonight because it’s so nice. I’ve got frozen corn on the cob that needs to be used, so that will be warmed up (microwave or steamed in a pot I think). Last week at Aldi I couldn’t resist a package of fresh green beans. I try so hard to resist out of season vegetables, but they were just so nice and fresh. . . so I will roast them in the oven with some olive oil, salt and pepper. Mmmm. The potato salad will be made out of the potatoes our buddy John gave us last fall. I’ll do the kind that has the hard boiled egg mixed in to use a bit of that up.
This is my venison meal for the week.
Tuesday: Salmon with Guinness Glaze, Citrus Rice and Greens
I’ve got some frozen salmon that I bought at Aldi. It’s all vacuum packed in individual servings and looks pretty tasty. Around St. Patrick’s day I made some Guinness glaze (here’s the recipe for Guinness Glaze from Cooking with Curls) with dark beer that had been hanging around. Now the glaze has been hanging around in the fridge–this will be a good way to use it up. I’ll throw the Citrus Rice together in the rice cooker using rice from my bulk purchased rice. The greens are home canned.
This is my fish meal for the week.
Wednesday: Lentil Soup with Bread & Butter and Stewed Peaches
I just found a ham bone in the freezer this weekend. Since I need a soup and bean meal, I figure making lentil soup with the ham bone would be just the ticket (plus I like to add in a bit of potato and some carrot–so that uses up a few more odds and ends). Typically I would make biscuits to go with a meal like this, or use homemade bread. But since I have a nice whole grain loaf sitting in the breadbox I might as well use that. The peaches are home canned and I will just warm them up a bit and add some of the leftover jellies that I have bits and pieces of. Maybe I’ll get fancy and add some sort of brown sugar/butter/oat topping and run it under the broiler. Maybe not.
This is my bean and soup meal for the week.
Thursday: Pork Chops and Stuffing, Green Beans with Onion and Bacon, and Cinnamon Applesauce.
I’ll make stuffing from the leftover bread–probably mix in onion and celery with some spices, broth & butter. If the chops I defrost are thick I’ll butterfly them and stuff them, otherwise I’ll put the stuffing in a casserole and place the pork on top and then bake. The green beans are from the garden and frozen. I’ll saute up some onion and bacon, then add the defrosted and drained beans in, cooking them until warmed through. Yum. Finally I’ll take some of the leftover home canned cinnamon applesauce from the fridge and stretch it by cooking in a few apples I have that are starting to get a bit mealy in the fruit bowl.
This is my pork meal for the week.
Friday: Pork Fried Rice
I don’t actually follow a recipe for my fried rice–it’s pretty much a mix of whatever I have on hand for leftovers. I dice everything up small, cook it, then add the cooked rice, soy sauce, teriyaki, garlic powder, onion powder, ginger, and sesame seeds. Sometimes I cook an egg in there too. It’s tasty, uses just one pan and uses up leftovers.
Saturday: Breakfast for Dinner
Yankee Bill is out of town. He doesn’t particularly like breakfast for dinner, so I try not to do it very often when he is home. The kids on the other hand love it. Pancakes or waffles with some fruit on the side makes a yummy, meatless meal that is cheap, but seems like a treat. We’ll use some of the maple syrup we made from our own trees.
This is my meatless meal for the week.
Sunday: Spaghetti and Meatballs with a Green Salad
Homemade meatballs using the ground beef from our bulk beef purchase and some sausage meat (venison) will be baked in the oven and then added to some jarred spaghetti sauce and served over pasta. For a vegetable I’ll make a green salad.
This is my beef meal for the week.
Are you interested in learning more about menu planning? Check out my post “Why Plan a Weekly Menu” .