Thanksgiving is over-and we have managed to eat most of the leftovers! Now we start into the holiday rush. Trust me-if you have never used meal planning before now is a great time to start! The holidays tend to be one of the most hectic times of year for families. School parties, church events, office parties, obligations on any and all sides of the family, shoppping, etc etc etc. . . it can be overwhelming! Having the “what’s for dinner” question taken care of will help-trust me!
Here is what we are looking at this week that may affect the menu plan:
1. It’s still hunting season-so Yankee Bill will be gone from Friday through Saturday again 😉 I hate seeing him so little, but I’ve got to admit, the venison in the freezer is AWE-SOME!
2. Speaking of venison-the doe & button buck Yankee Bill shot came back from the butcher. . .so I had to make room in the freezer. That means I found a bunch of stuff that needs to be eaten this week. Some vacuum sealed venison sausage from 2007 (yes-it’s still fine). A bunch of semi freezer burned vegetables. A loaf of bread that has been in there too long to make anything other than breadcrumbs out of. 3 packages (what was I thinking?) of corn tortillas. I also had 2 cans of turkey that didn’t seal when I was pressure canning on Saturday-so those are in the fridge and have to be used up soon.
3. There are brussel sprouts, carrots, mizuna, chard, tat-soi and turnip greens still growing in the garden.
4. We’ve got at least 3 families in the church who need meals brought to them-so I need to make some of my suppers in triplicate so I have extras to share
5. We will most likely be decorating our tree on Sunday evening-which means we will have potato pancakes that evening. It’s a Frugal Upstate Family Tradition to commemorate the fact that Yankee Bill and I met in Germany and used to eat potato pancakes at the Kriskindlemarkt’s there 🙂
6. I continue to work a venison, meatless, fish/seafood, soup and bean meal into every week. Since we picked up our half pig (butchered & wrapped!) from my CSA friends I’ve been considering adding a pork meal in there.
Taking all that into account here is my game plan:
Monday: Potato Sausage Soup or Venison Rice Soup with Rolls
I have leftovers of both of these soups in the fridge from last week. I was going to bring them over to the families I mentioned above, but never had a chance. So we’ll eat them tonight and I’ll make a couple of new pots to take over. The rolls are leftover from this week’s deer camp! This is my soup meal for the week.
Tuesday: Crockpot Turkey Tetrazzini with Sauted Mizuna
I’ll make a double batch of crockpot turkey tetrazzini. That will give us plenty to eat as a family and still have tons to bring over to the families from church. That should use up the two cans of turkey that didn’t seal and some of the mizuna from the garden.
Wednesday: Homemade Baked Beans and Cornbread
I haven’t made baked beans in a really, really long time, which is a shame! I guess it just doesn’t seem like a summertime meal 🙂 I’ll start the white beans (great northern probably) soaking on Tuesday night so that they are all ready to be rinsed and started in the crockpot on Wednesday moring. Buddy isn’t fond of beans, so he’ll have the option of making himself a sandwich for dinner after he’s tried a spoon or two of the beans. This is my meatless meal for the week AND my bean meal. A two for one 😉 (note: yes, there is a tiny bit of bacon in the beans for flavor, but I consider it just that-a flavoring)
Thursday: Tuna Stuffed Shells with Turnip Greens
My tuna stuffed shells are not only tasty-but they are a great meal to share–so I’ll double or triple this meal as well and send it over to those church families I mentioned. The turnip greens from the garden will be stewed “pot green” style–possibly in the crockpot–with a bit of either ham bullion or a strip of bacon and some red pepper flakes. Mmmm. This is my fish meal for the week.
Friday: Pizza Monkey Bread
The kids have been begging me to make these again-it’s pizza made monkey bread style! I’ll post a recipe soon, promise!
Saturday: Venison in Gravy over Rice with Carrots
Saturday will be consumed, I’m sure, with the start of holiday chaos…plus Yankee Bill will be out at deer camp overnight. I’ll just plan a simple supper for the kids and myself-Home canned venison (from 2009-yes, it’s FINE) with a package of premade gravy mix over rice cooked in the rice cooker. We’ll dig some carrots up out of the garden and cook them lightly (Buddy told me he doesn’t like ‘mushy’ carrots). Quick, simple, tasty & healthy. This is my venison meal for the week.
Sunday: Potato Pancakes with Sour Cream and Applesauce
It’s a tradition! The kids look forward to this meal every year! This year we’ll get to use homemade applesauce with our potato pancakes–which is fun. We’ll have my Mother in Law and my brother over, eat potato pancakes and decorate the Christmas Tree while sipping Gluhwein. What could be better. This is another meatless meal 😉 And yes, I realize that this is not exactly a nutritionally balanced meal-oh well. It’s once a year.
Are you interested in learning more about menu planning? Check out my post “Why Plan a Weekly Menu” .