Tag Archives: healthy dinners

Weekly Menus: Birthday Edition, Week of 6/9/2013

Gentle Reader, what a week. I didn’t think it was possible to overdo on Challah French Toast, but it is. After an amazing trip to NYC, fueled by sampling some of the oddest things I’ve ever tasted, I just wanted to eat cereal for breakfast. Also, I discovered that my Challah French Toast easily bested any I had in New York. Thank you Cook’s Illustrated.

Challah French Toast from Grey Dog.

Challah French Toast from Grey Dog.

For the extreme tasting, may I introduce you to balut. Things to note, I do not always pay enough attention to the fine print. I heard “duck egg” and at a Filipino restaurant, “not containing shellfish.” What I missed, “fertilized.”

Thanks to @lynxbat for this before picture. Duck eggs, looking innocent. Balut @ Jeepney.

Thanks to @lynxbat for this before picture. Duck eggs, looking innocent. Balut @ Jeepney.

I will do a full review of Jeepney soon (really amazing experience, great food), but meanwhile, special thanks to my partner in crime, @Lynxbat, who offered to name our appetizer halfway through. It was the highlight of the trip, though I only managed three bites before I backed down.

The whole patio stopped to watch. I have not yet realized what I've signed on for.

The whole patio stopped to watch. I have not yet realized what I’ve signed on for.

So this week features a return to normal, with cake for The Youngest Practical Cook Jr. The weekly menus are:

Weekly Menus: 6/9/2013

Weekly Menus: 6/9/2013

The Four-Square Grocery List (note that The Youngest TPC Jr added “pairs” as a request, in the right place even!):

The Four-Square Grocery Shopping List: 6/9/2013

The Four-Square Grocery Shopping List: 6/9/2013

Which all means:

Sunday: Ribs and Cornbread
We are planning ahead, and have a big day. So simple and easy is best–we bought ribs prepared, and we’re going to add something green plus cornbread for The Youngest’s celebratory birthday meal. There will be travel, soccer, and swimming in this as well, and one of two cakes (Birthday Carrot Cake!) plus ice cream, so easy wins.

Real Vanilla Beans: The key to an amazing cream cheese frosting

Real Vanilla Beans: The key to an amazing cream cheese frosting

Monday: Pizza
We have leftovers, add a salad, and call it a day. I love summer.

Tuesday: Veggie Quesadillas
Whatever is left in the fridge will be chopped and roasted, slapped into a tortilla, covered with cheese, and served. Sliced avocados make it fancy.

Wednesday: Salmon and Quinoa
What can I say, we’re fans of the high-protein light meal. Add broccoli and everyone’s happy.

Salmon and Arugula over Quinoa: It rocked

Salmon and Arugula over Quinoa: It rocked

Thursday: Beans and Rice
This will probably be just black beans and rice, optional tortilla. A favorite and easy to take outside.

Black Beans and Rice: Simple and Satisfying for Dinner

Black Beans and Rice: Simple and Satisfying for Dinner

Friday: Leftover delight!
I suspect this will involve eggs to stretch the bits and pieces of the week.

Saturday: Dine Out!
Currently seeking the best chicken and waffles, and new and different pork offerings. I may be traveling to discover this. Woot!

The Youngest TPC Wrote and Illustrated a Story about NYC: I love this

The Youngest TPC Wrote and Illustrated a Story about NYC: I love this

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten? Post a comment, send a tweet, share a condolence or two. I’m listening.

Send your extra birthday wishes, questions, and chicken and waffle suggestions to practical cook at gmail dot com. Connect on Facebook: The Practical Cook Blog. (Thanks in advance for spreading The Practical Cook Blog word. Press “like” on Facebook today! Also, follow the food pictures on Instagram @amylewi.)

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Coming up Wednesday: Cereal in Review: Chocolate Almond Granola from Trader Joe’s

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Weekly Menus: 2/3/2013 The Juniors Edition

Gentle Readers, there is great power in being able to put food on the table. For the past few years, The Practical Cooks Junior have been training in the culinary arts, and now it’s their time to shine. As I’m traveling for business this week, the Juniors have stepped up. They created the meal plans, with some oversight, and they are going to cook with adult supervision.

Thoughtful eaters make good cooks. The Practical Cooks Junior at work.

Thoughtful eaters make good cooks. The Practical Cooks Junior at work.

For school lunches, I’ve brought more things in that they could just toss in a lunchbox without much prep: yogurt, squishable applesauce, fruit cups, bagels, phoney baloney for sammies, etc.

A few tips for anyone who needs to prep before: watch and chop salad and leave it in the salad spinner, buy at least one frozen entree, shredded cheese is a good alternative for people without knife skills.

What I learned: It is more expensive to shop for convenience and redundancy. Worth it for peace of mind and still cheaper than eating out constantly, but notably pricier.

Easy to use lunchbox food.

Easy to use lunchbox food.

Go team, I couldn’t be more proud. Take pictures for me.

Weekly Menus, Junior Edition:

Weekly Menus: 2/3/2013

Weekly Menus: 2/3/2013

The Four Square Grocery Shopping List: 

The Four-Square Grocery Shopping List: 2/3/2013

The Four-Square Grocery Shopping List: 2/3/2013

Which translates to:

Sunday: Pizza and Salad
I have carefully selected various vegetarian-friendly pizza option for the freezer. Choice matters, even here. There are also two types of salad, complete with the requisite crunchy toppings.

Frozen pizza options.

Frozen pizza options.

Monday: Leftovers
Even when traveling, there are things to be cleaned up. I depend on leftovers for those quick weeknight meals. I would almost rather toss away something freezer burned than not save it and have it when needed!

Tuesday: Pasta and Carrots
The Juniors have a decision here as well. If they feel ambitious, cheese tortellini with sauce. If they feel like field research, I bought Trader Joe’s Whole Grain Veggie Lasagna. It’s a smaller portion and sounded pretty good. We shall review it one way or the other.

Vegetable Lasagna from Trader Joe's--field testing to begin soon!

Vegetable Lasagna from Trader Joe’s–field testing to begin soon!

Wednesday: Soup and Grilled Cheese
This meal was a big success the last time we cooked for TPC’s Dad in a practice run, so here it is again. Featuring either tomato or red roasted pepper soup, this is a great starter meal, and perfect for the chilly weather we’ve been having.

Thursday: Spinach Quesadilla and Beans
Don’t fear the cast iron skillet! With shredded cheese and prewashed spinach, this meal is a snap. We shall see if the Juniors convince TPC’s Dad to try cutting an avocado.

Friday: Dine Out!
I’ll be home, and we shall do a victory lap together! Juniors choice! Though by this point they may be confident enough I can ask them to cook for me. At that point, we’ll start higher math and I’ll get them to do the taxes as well.

Next stop, what's a 1099?

Next stop, what’s a 1099?

Saturday: Dine Out!
Guests in town, and plotting the best spot to take them!

Do you remember cooking your first meal? What was it? Share your memory in the comments box below, or send me a Tweet.

Send your questions, quips, and confessionals practical cook at gmail dot com. Connect on Facebook: The Practical Cook Blog. (Thanks in advance for spreading The Practical Cook Blog word. Press “like” on Facebook today! Also, follow the food pictures on Instagram @amylewi.)

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Up on Friday: For the Love of Marshmallows: One Ingredient, Three Ways

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