Weekly meals April 24-28

Meal updates from last week:
Meals from last week were amazing!  The Thai chicken and wild rice soup was so delicious, it will join our meal rotation.  The ramen with noodles was also a hit, I used chicken thighs instead of flank steak and it still turned out great.  We ended the week with the greek sheet-pan dinner and it was hands down my favourite.  If you have never visited www.halfbakedharvest.com then you need to right now!  I was not overly impressed with the chia oat recipe, but the powerhouse cookies were great.  They were gobbled up within days.  If you follow me on Instagram (three_plates_full) you will know I also made a banana zucchini loaf.  It turned out well, super moist and flavourful.  You can find the recipe on my Pinterest board (Sara Rumpel).

This week we are eating at home Sunday to Thursday, I will be cooking from an old magazine that I found called Eat Well Feel Good.  This magazine is published by Better Homes & Gardens.  I will provide the recipes to all of the recipes as this magazine is not available anymore.

Barbecued chicken drumsticks with baked potatoes and spinach and berry salad.  The recipe for the salad is in my previous post.  I did not use a recipe for the chicken or potatoes.
Garlic pork with walnut and kale barley, I will be using spinach and brown rice in this recipe instead of kale and barley.
Lemon-sage roasted chicken thighs, I am not sure if I will serve this with roasted potatoes or asparagus.
Mozzarella stuffed meatball sandwiches with caesar salad.  I shared my recipe for meatball sandwiches in my meal planning from March 27-31.
Chili mac from @todaysparent I have never tried a chili mac recipe before but this looks like a one pot hit!

This week for breakfast we will be eating baked oatmeal.  This is another recipe that I found in the magazine.  For snacks I will be going back to protein balls.  I haven’t made any for about a month so I think that it is time to get back into making them.  I am not sure which recipe I will be using.  Don’t forget to print the Dinner List 10 for ease at the grocery store.

Happy cooking,
Sara

Bring in spring

With spring in the air and summer just around the corner it is a great time to add some new ingredients into your evening meals.  At this time of year I am always looking to add some seasonal ingredients into my meal plans.  Currently, asparagus, strawberries and rhubarb are just hitting their peak.

Asparagus is an easy add to any meal, roasted, baked or even barbecued it is a perfect side dish to any protein.  I like to bake mine at a high heat with a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper and some grated lemon rind.  Another delicious topping to roasted asparagus is feta cheese and sliced grape tomatoes.  Here are a few more asparagus recipes: roasted garlic asparagus,  sautéed asparagus and grilled balsamic asparagus.

Most often we think to use strawberries in desserts, but topping some spinach with sliced strawberries is a wonderful flavour combination.  I found a great recipe for a strawberry spinach salad from @cookinglight.  The recipe called for chicken as well but we ate ours without.  I also added blackberries as they are also in abundance at this time of year.  Instead of making a dressing for the salad you let the berries sit in a mixture of oil and vinegar and then add it to the salad.  To finish it off you sprinkle with feta and pecans.  I decided to candy my pecans and the salad turned out amazingly!  Here is another great looking strawberry salad recipe.

I love rhubarb!  For me simplicity is the key, I love stewing rhubarb and using it as a topping for yogurt or ice cream.  Another great idea for rhubarb is baked in muffins with cinnamon sugar topping.  A recipe that I have been wanting to try is strawberry rhubarb crisp bars from @smittenkitchen.  If you are looking for something different, then give Jamie Oliver’s meringue with rhubarb and cream recipe a try.

Happy cooking,
Sara

 

Weekly meals April 17-21

All of the meals from last week worked out very well.  We especially liked the meatloaf recipe. It was a great combination of sweet and smoky.

Being away all weekend was great but it is time to get back into the groove of cooking and eating at home. We will be eating at home Monday-Friday, we arrive home Monday so I’m not sure what our dinner will look like.

  • As we have no groceries today may look like eggs and toast. If I get to the store I may buy a small ham and serve it with veggies. It all depends on how much energy I have to get it all done!
  • Thai chicken and wild rice soup from @sweetpeasandsaffron I have never made this soup before, but I have high hopes.
  • Beef and broccoli ramen from @damn_delicious I’m very excited to try this recipe.
  • Pork and apples from @cremedelacrumb1 I will serve this with brown rice and in season asparagus.
  • Greek chicken souvlaki and potatoes from @halfbakedharvest I’m never disappointed with her recipes, and who doesn’t love a one pan meal!

For breakfast this week we will be having overnight oats.  I’ve been dying to try this chia oat recipe from @theglowingfridge it sounds delicious.  For snack this week I am going to try this recipe.

As I am doing this post from afar I will not be adding my grocery link.  This will be back up next week.

Happy cooking,

Sara

 

Meal delivery

How many times in a week do you ask yourself, what am I making for dinner?  Do I have all of the ingredients?  Do I really feel like making it?  I believe that I am not alone in these thoughts, and now there are many companies who are catering to these needs.  The idea of meal delivery is taking off in the Untied States, and it is slowly coming into Canada.  Most of these companies deliver packaged food, cut and ready for you to cook with an accompanying recipe.  From Martha Stewart to Tyler Florence many celebrity chefs are jumping on this meal wagon.  Living in Calgary there are many different places to go for pre prepared food, to take home, heat and eat.  Here are some places that we have tried: Sunterra, Forage, Meez, Fresh Kitchen, Made and Our Daily Brett.

As I am holidaying in California, I could not wait to try one of these delivery services.  I have had my eye on @onepotatobox for a very long time.  We ordered three dinners to serve two people, they arrived in a box packaged with ice packs to keep perishables cold.  Each meal is bagged with all of the ingredients, and recipe cards are inclosed in the box.  They also send you a little treat in each box, ours contained a roll of chocolate chip cookie dough.  I tried one of the recipes tonight and it was delicious!  We made arepas with slow-cooked pulled chicken and sweet corn avocado cups.  This recipe took less than 30 minutes to prepare and was full of flavour.  There was more than enough food for two adults and one child.  My son was not interested in the corn salad, but ate and enjoyed everything else.  I will be making another recipe tomorrow.  If you are looking for a similar service in Calgary I have found two that look very promising: Chefs Plate and Paper Bag Princess.  If you do a google search for both it will take you to their sites.

If you have tried any meal delivery services that you have been happy with, please post a comment on the blog.

Happy ordering,
Sara

Weekly meals April 3- April 7

Meal updates from last week:
As the meals I posted were ones that I have made before I do not have any updates, but I would love to hear from you, to see what you made and what you liked.

We are still away on holiday so meals are very unplanned.  This week I am sharing with you salads that can be a served as meals.  With warmer weather coming, salads are a great alternative to a meat and potatoes dinner.  With children, I usually deconstruct the salad and serve the ingredients separate.  I have made all of the salads listed below, and can say that I will make all of them again.  Enjoy!

BLT salad from @marthastewart as I have said before this salad is amazing!  We will usually have this salad at least once a month.
Thai cashew coconut rice with ginger peanut sauce from @hostthetoast we have had this salad many times and it is delicious every time.
Buffalo chicken salad from @smellslikehomeblog this is an amazing salad, full of bold flavours.
Bbq chicken COBB from @closetcooking this is a similar salad to the one above, but the cilantro lime ranch takes it to another level.
Greek chicken souvlaki salad from lemonsforlulu.com this is one of my all time favourite salads!  Add some pita bread and it is a well-balanced meal.

Happy cooking,
Sara

 

Weekly meals Mar. 27- Mar. 31

Meal updates from last week:
All meals from last week turned out great!  The chicken and artichoke bake was the best that it has ever been.  I changed up the side, and served it with mashed potatoes and grilled asparagus.  As always the hamburger soup was good, and makes even better leftovers as the flavours have time to develop.

This week we are away on holiday but I will be sharing with you some simple week night meals that are sure to impress your family.

  • Thai noodles with chicken and broccoli, this recipe comes from Anne Lindsay’s cookbook Cooking Light.  It is a staple in our house and is amazing.  I always double the sauce and make lots of pasta, as it makes great leftovers either hot or cold.
  • Black bean tostadas with corn relish from @marthastewart these are simple to put together but packed with fresh flavours.  I use corn tortillas instead of flour and in the summer grill fresh corn.
  • Monte cristo sandwich from @wearsmanyhats I serve this with a side salad or fresh fruit.
  • Beef burritos from the Best of Bridge ladies, as with other recipes from their cookbooks this is something that we eat over and over again.  I serve this with shredded head lettuce, cilantro, tomatoes and sliced avocado.  It is a hit every time!
  • Mozzarella stuffed meatball sandwiches from me!  This is simple and packs a lot of flavour.  Purchase a package of mild Italian sausage (spicy will also work), remove the sausage from the casing.  Cut mozzarella into small cubes (you could also use mozzarella cheese string).  Using a melon baller, scoop the sausage and place a piece of cheese into the middle of the ball.  Make sure that all of the cheese is covered by the sausage.  Place the meatballs on a cookie sheet lined with tinfoil.  Heat oven to 350 and bake until golden, around 20 minutes.  While the meatballs are cooking, heat marinara sauce.  To serve, cut submarine buns in half, place three meatballs inside, cover with sauce and extra shredded mozzarella.  Serve this with a caesar salad.

While away I have been looking at some new recipes that I would like to try.  These cookies are perfect for your Easter spread, and who doesn’t love mini eggs?!  I love all things lemon, plus this recipe is a way to use my doughnut pan.  I enjoy a good morning glory muffin and have found a bakery at the Farmer’s Market that does them very well, but I think that I need to try making them myself.

Happy cooking,
Sara

 

Snacks on the plane

With many families leaving for warmer destinations in the next three weeks I decided to tackle the plane snack dilemma.  I am not sure if it is just my son, but when we travel his stomach is a never-ending empty pit!  It does not matter if we are on a plane or road tripping he is continuously hungry when we travel.  We all know the key to a successful trip is to keep children occupied and happy, and this can be accomplished with some good snacks, new colouring book and a movie.  Here are some easy and portable ideas for travel with kids.

  • Granola bars, we especially like Lara bars or you could make your own.
  • Granola bites, these small one bite balls are great for kids.  I buy Made Good as they are lunchbox friendly.
  • Snack or trail mix, purchased or homemade both work very well.  For an easy homemade mix add: Cheerios, Chex, cheddar fish or bunnies, raisins or dried cranberries, pretzels and chocolate chips or m&m’s.
  • Applesauce, the easiest travel kinds are the ones in the squeeze pouch.
  • Mini muffins, if you have a stash in your freezer these are great for taking on trips.
  • Sliced apples or other sliced fruit.
  • Cheese string or Babybel cheese.
  • Wraps, I usually pack a peanut butter and jam wrap for my son, it keeps well and easy to eat on the-go.
  • Gum and a small bag of gummy candies.  This always makes their eyes light up when they get the have two treats during travel, and may have the ability to calm an upset child!

Happy travel,
Sara

Leprechaun bait

The recipe that I used for the Leprechaun bait is another tried and tested recipe from my grandma Illa.  She made these every Christmas, rolled them in red and green sprinkles and kept them in a Christmas box.  I changed a few things with this recipe, but it is mainly the same one she used for many years.  Instead of making large popcorn balls, I made them kid size, and rolled them in all things green.

Marshmallow Popcorn Balls
1/4 cup of butter

32 large marshmallows
8 cups of popcorn (you can use an air popper or stove)
1/2 tsp salt
Sprinkles of any kind (I used shamrocks and green jimmies)

In the top of a double boiler heat butter and marshmallows till melted.  Place popcorn in a large mixing bowl.  When marshmallow mixture is melted add it to the popcorn.  Stir to combine.  Leave this mixture to cool for a few minutes as it is too difficult to form into balls when it is hot.  To make smaller popcorn balls I used a spoon slightly larger than a tablespoon(for ease of rolling cover your hands in butter).  The recipe made between 30-35 small balls.  Once formed roll in desired sprinkles.  Store in an airtight container, but really just eat them!

Happy baking,
Sara

Weekly Meals Mar. 13-Mar. 17

Meal updates from last week:
The shepherd’s pie was delicious as usual, and would be a great recipe to serve for St. Patrick’s Days this Friday.  I was not overly impressed with the chicken parmesan crock pot soup.  I found that it lacked flavour, my husband said that it was a good leftover as the flavour was better the next day.  My son loved the grilled cheese rollups!  This recipe is a mixture between grilled cheese and pizza, so how could a child not love them.  The chicken tacos were good, I think that the mango slaw was the best part.

This week we will be eating at home Sunday-Thursday.  After a week of below average temperatures it looks like the deep freeze is over!  I will be using the bbq for two of our meals.  We will most likely go out for dinner Friday and then have a simple dinner Saturday.  Tonight the littles will have breakfast for dinner, and then my husband and I will have a charcuterie board after bedtime.

For breakfast and snacks this week I will be making two recipes that can be eaten for either meal.  Using the frozen power fruit mix from Superstore (cherries, blackberries and blueberries) I will make mixed berry and coconut muffins.  These are a perfect addition to any lunch box as it is nut free.  For an easy on the go breakfast give these mini ham and cheese quinoa cups a try!  Currently, we are out of protein balls so I will be making some this week.  I will post the recipe after they are made.  Don’t forget to print the Dinner List 7 for ease at the grocery store.

Stay tuned for:  St. Patrick’s Day recipes and Leprechaun bait (also known as popcorn balls).

Happy cooking,
Sara

Weekly meals Mar. 5- Mar.10

Meal updates from last week:
The meals this week were all very successful.  The Thai chicken thighs were very good.  The sauce tastes so good served over steamed rice.  Chicken caesar burgers were amazing as usual.  Flavourful and moist, they are one of the best that I have made.

I am planning meals this week for Sunday-Thursday.  I am not sure what will be happening Friday and Saturday, but we will make that decision when we get to it.

  • Shepherds pie from @lifeinthelofthouse this will be served with a salad and apple crisp with vanilla ice cream for dessert.
  • Chicken parmesan soup from @bakedbyrachel we will eat this with a salad on the side.
  • Almond, berry and chicken spinach salad from @chelseasmessyspron my son is not crazy about salad, but he will eat all of the salad components except the spinach.  When I plate his meal I give him chicken and then mixed berries.
  • Grilled pizza roll-ups from @weelicious this will be served with mixed raw veggies and dip.
  • Bulgogi BBQ chicken tacos with mango slaw from @halfbakedharvest this recipe cannot be found on her website, you need to follow her on Instagram where she has posted a recipe video.

For breakfast this week I am going to try another overnight oat recipe.  This recipe for strawberry cheesecake oats looks amazing!  As I made more energy balls later last week I will not be making any this week.  Instead I will be making chia breakfast cookies to have around for snack.

Make grocery shopping a snap by bringing your dinner-list-6

Happy cooking,
Sara