Dinner Time! Dinner Time! Dinner Time!

Happy Monday, fair readers! It’s a picture perfect day here in Chicago…..sunny with a slight breeze, and temperatures expected to be in the low 80s. Simply lovely June weather, indeed. Far better than the 50 and pouring rain with storms we had on June 1st. I’ll take it!

If it’s the beginning of the week, it must be time to be thinking about our meal plan! Our last weekly meal plan that was posted had some new recipes (some worked out beautifully, some will need some tweaking if they are to be made again) and we may try some new stuff out this week too.  Also, get ready, because grilling season is officially here and we are rocking it out! It is perfect weather for outdoor cooking and not heating up the kitchen.  

Someone asked me why I don’t post our breakfast and lunch meal plans as well, and the answer is actually pretty simply — it’s almost always the same stuff.  I’m not a huge breakfast person, but hubby is. He has a protein smoothie with some variation of fruit included pretty much every morning, since we will see an apocalypse before he will eat an egg.  I enjoy either eggs with a bit of bacon or sausage, or a smoothie as well. Depending on what fruit we have on hand, the flavor changes daily (preview of tomorrow’s exciting post? smoothie making and how to freeze your own fruit to save money).

For lunch, I’m also a person of routine. I can easily eat the same thing almost every day for lunch and not get bored with it. If I’m not eating leftovers from the previous evening’s dinner, you’ll find me having a simple lunch of deli turkey breast, a tomato, pickle, and 2 cheese sticks. It’s filling, packed with protein and fills me up until dinner time.  Patrick will often have some variation on this lunch as well, or be eating leftovers.

Over the years, I’ve learned a few things about my cooking, the most simple of which is this — cooking for two is easier than cooking for one; cooking for four is easier than cooking for two. Most recipes have a standard “makes four” serving size. In lieu of fiddling with halving recipes and possibly messing with flavors on meals that include spices and zip, I just make the four person recipe. That way, we have leftovers for lunch that are going to be delicious and filling, and which take a lot less prep work than anything else. Perfect for tossing in a lunch bag as you’re heading out the door to work. I know there are some people who don’t like leftovers, and I gotta tell ya, those people are missing out! Some meals are even better as leftovers — tacos for one. After the taco meat has had all the seasonings seep in overnight, it is fabulous the second and third days. Leftovers also work well for us on evenings when one of us isn’t home due to social commitments, work, etc. If Patrick isn’t going to be home for dinner, I may just heat up leftovers to clear out the fridge instead of making a big production of dinner, and vice versa. So, if you’re a reader that doesn’t like leftovers, I urge you to give them a try again. You’re eating your own food that you’ve already prepped (so you know how well it was made) and you’re going to be able to experience the food in new ways.

Without further ado, I give you our dinner plan for the week:

Sunday:

Grilled pork chops with grilled garlic green beans and sweet corn

Monday:

Steak fajitas — I made my own fajita seasoning, using this recipe as the base. In lieu of cornstarch, I use arrowroot, and I cut out the sugar. I’ve not noticed any lack of flavor without having the sugar in it. I like to let the steak marinate in the fajita seasoning all day in the fridge, and then do a quick “make your own fajita bar” with the peppers, onions, tomatoes, lettuce, etc.

Tuesday:

Bruschetta Chicken from The Pioneer Woman — If you’re not reading The Pioneer Woman’s blog yet, do yourself a favor and head over there right now and bookmark it! She’s got some really great recipes, funny stories, giveaways, etc. Her bruschetta chicken is unknowingly Paleo friendly and DELICIOUS!!!

Wednesday:

Grilled sausage with grilled broccoli — I’m going to do a blog post later this week about grilling veggies, so get your grilling baskets ready! If you don’t have one, hit up Marshalls or HomeGoods and grab one cheap. It’ll be one of the best things you buy this summer!

Thursday:

Stuffed peppers and Broccoli Sunflower Seed Slaw with Poppy Dressing

Friday:

Leftovers! Or maybe eating out! It’ll be a surprise to us and you!

Saturday:

Sadly, Patrick and I have separate social engagements this evening and we will be eating out separately…..both are events tailored to our individual interests, though, so we will each have fun. I’m going to the theater with close friends and Patrick is watching a huge boxing match with his buddies!

What is on your meal plan for this week? Anything new and fun?

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