First off, I LOVE this picture of Zoe. I took it this past fall when we were in the city for one of Eli’s soccer games. We had some down time before the game, so we decided to do a photo shoot (which was SO much fun). Zoe is a total natural in front of the camera and she just blows me away at how naturally gorgeous she is, and her smile radiates life. I feel like this photo totally captured who she is, and who she is becoming! I love you Zoe!
Wow, I can’t believe that it’s been 2 weeks since I posted a recipe on the blog. Sorry for being such a slacker guys, but I have a lot balls in the air, and there are tons of life changes going on right now. Changes that I’m almost ready to talk about and share with you all in the coming months, but for now, I wanted to get out a simple weekly menu post to you all.
I’ve gotten a lot of emails from readers and friends requesting me to bring back the weekly menu. I know a lot of you count on it for weeknight menu planning ideas, and it’s honestly a great way for me to share with you all some recipes that you may not find or see on the blog. So, basically it’s a win, win for all of us.
I’m aiming to bring back the weekly menu on a more consistent basis, (like weekly) but I’m also noodling on some ideas on how to make the weekly dinner menu better going forward. I was thinking of putting together a weekly grocery list, and organizing the menu so that you get it on Friday instead of Sunday, so you can better prepare for the week ahead. I may also assemble the menu so that I’m not just using one fresh ingredient like basil or cilantro once in the course of the week, but using it twice, for efficiency sake, and so that’s there’s no waste.
Aside from the weekly menu, I was thinking of doing a few “how-to” posts on preparing a complete dinner, like the two photo’s below (note, these below photos were taken at night with my iPhone, so the lighting not great). I would basically be showing you what I do in advance to make the below meals a simple weeknight dinner. I find that I do tons of prep work in advance naturally, so that when dinner time rolls around, I basically have a 30 minute meal to prepare. I want to share those tips with you all, so that cooking family friendly healthy dinners during the week can be easy instead of stressful or intimidating.
The below dinner is my lacninato kale salad, cheesy baked tortellini, 5-minute roasted Brussels sprouts.
The below dinner is my kid friendly caesar salad, crispy & easy garlic bread and green been and shallot ravioli ( I substituted broccoli rabe for the green beans). Both of these meals have components that can be made in advance and assembled come dinner time.
I’m open to your suggestions! What do you all want to see going forward on the blog? What would be helpful for you? Please email me, or comment below and let me know what you would like to see added or changed with the weekly menu. I want to make this blog a one-stop destination for you all, so please let me know what you want to see more of, (recipes, tips) and what works and doesn’t work for you. Thanks in advance!
Ok, so let’s move onto this week’s menu….
Sunday Night Dinner: Favorite turkey burgers with cilantro-lime mayonnaise, lacinato kale salad and Robert’s absolute best brownies. Spring break is over, so I’m celebrating by cooking up one of our favorite dinners. These turkey burgers rock and get devoured every time I make them up! If you haven’t tried them, then you must! I toast up some english muffins, add the turkey burger, top it off with the cilantro-lime mayonnaise (and for me a bit of kale salad) and you have yourself one killer burger. The cilantro-lime mayonnaise is a must for these burgers!
What can I say about my lacinato kale salad, it’s the bomb and is the one salad that gets made 2-3 times a week in our house. It’s simple, easy, super tasty and lasts for 3 days in the fridge! Perfection!I baked these brownies up recently for a friend’s birthday and my kids have been begging for them! These are our favorite fudgey brownies, and we honestly haven’t found any that we like as much as these.
What’s great about this dinner is that it can all be prepped ahead of time. I always wash, de-stem and store my kale when I get back from the grocery store, so it’s super easy to whip up the kale salad ahead of time, because my kale is washed and ready to go. I make up the turkey burgers in the morning, as well as the cilantro-lime mayonnaise, so all I have to do come dinner time is turn on the broiler for the english muffins, and grill up the burgers. Super easy! This is an easy dinner for those busy weeknights, as long as you have an hour earlier in the day to prep everything in advance.
Monday night dinner: Paul McCartney’s refried bean tacos and lacinato kale salad. I try and make every Monday night a meatless night, especially when we stuff ourselves silly with some sort of meat dish the night before (like those turkey burgers last night). Monday’s are hectic, so I aim for a simple and easy to prepare dinner. These refried bean tacos get made a LOT in my house, and are another family favorite. They take under 20 minutes to whip up, making them the perfect weeknight meatless Monday meal. Zoe loves taking the leftover refried beans to school for lunch the next day. I just heat up a thermos, warm up the beans, top them with some Monterey jack cheese and pack her some tortilla chips for dipping. It’s an easy and tasty lunch! You can also make cheese quesadillas for the kiddos with the leftover refried beans inserted with the cheese between the tortilla. My kids love leftover cheesy refried bean quesadillas.
Tuesday night dinner: Kid friendly caesar salad topped with roasted chicken and popovers. I love a good salad topped with chicken! I usually roast up and shred the chicken during or after dinner the night before, so all I have to do is add it to the salad come dinner time. This salad is truly a kid approved salad, because the dressing doesn’t have any mayonnaise, eggs or anchovies. It’s super easy to whip up, and makes enough dressing for a few nights. As you all know, we love popovers and they only take 30 minutes to make up, so I make these up as often as my lacinato kale salad. You can always substitute a hearty bread in lieu of the popovers, and make an even easier dinner.
Wednesday night dinner: Leftover night! Kid friendly caesar salad and chicken sandwiches. I baked up a few extra chicken breasts the other night, so I’m going to use the leftover shredded chicken and make up some cold chicken sandwiches and serve up some kid friendly caesar salad on the side. Easy peasy weeknight dinner!
Thursday night dinner: Broccoli lemon pasta! This is another family favorite pasta, and it gets made at least twice a month. It’s my go-to weeknight pasta, because it’s a one-pot meal and can be made in under 30 minutes. If you have picky eaters who won’t touch broccoli, this pasta will get them to like broccoli. I tend to use broccoli rabe/baby broccoli in lieu of regular broccoli. I just add the broccoli rabe to the last minute of the pasta’s cooking time, and then drain it all together. Easy peasy! I also love topping the pasta with my lacinato kale salad if I happen to have some of that hanging around, which I always do!
Like I said above, I’m open to your suggestions! What do you all want to see? What type of posts or recipes would be helpful for you? Please email me, or comment below and let me know what you would like to see added or changed with the weekly menu. I want to make this blog a one-stop destination for you all, so please let me know what you want to see more of, (recipes, tips) and what works and doesn’t work for you. Thanks in advance!
Have an amazing week everyone!