19 June 2013

It's a good plan ...

.... but the question is, whether we'll manage to stick to it!  As ever, real life often gets in the way of the plans I make for dinner throughout the week.  Some weeks we make it through to the end of the plan with no changes, but most weeks something happens to change at least the order in which the meals appear, if not the meals themselves.

So near - but yet, so far ....
However, I find that making a plan is still the best way to a) afford the ingredients and b) reduce wastage.  As I've said before, it also cuts out that horrible "what shall we have for dinner tonight" question.  All you have to do, is remember to take the meat out of the freezer the night before!

This week's plan has had to be changed right at the start, thanks to my over-twanging the elastic bands in one of my fingers by wrestling with the car's seat belt on Monday afternoon.  Having turned a lovely shade of light mauve and assumed twice its normal girth, we decided that perhaps immobilising the finger might be an idea and broke out the lolly sticks and micropore tape.  Thankfully, even with it in the splint, I discovered I could still type - so here I am.
Hand-E-cap!  Neat little splint though, don't you think?

As an emergency measure, the pork steaks in mushroom sauce that were due to be had on Tuesday evening, were changed to pizza.  Bung it in the oven, set the timer, get it back out, eat it.  One trouble free mealtime, done!

It is now Wednesday morning and the offending digit is at least staying the size it should be, even if it is still hurting.  Still, hubby's in the chair for tonight's dinner so it's got a bit longer in which to heal.

So, what's on the list?  Well, here we go :

Tues : Pizza
Weds : Full English Breakfast
Thurs : Baked curry chicken, vegetable curry and rice
Fri : Rigatone con cipolle, with naked burgers
Sat : Lamb flatballs in flatbreads with hummus and salad
Sun : Family lunch out
Mon : Pasta bolognese.

A previous version - with black pudding, this time
Tonight's Full English isn't one of those humungous "eat until you burst" kinds of Full English's, it will consist of bacon, sausage, fried egg, mushrooms, baked beans and hash browns.  No toast, no bubble and squeak (sob - LOVE bubble & squeak), no fried slices, no black pudding - or any of the other many and varied items you could include in one.  Still, it's been a while since our last - and we only fry the sausages and eggs (and then in rapeseed oil) - so it could be worse.

Tomorrow's baked curry chicken is a recipe I've been pondering over for a while.  You see, we have recently had several meals where I've oven baked chicken breasts in either a BBQ glaze or Cajun spices and it occurred to me that I could marinate the chicken in a yoghurt/curry/chutney kind of mixture and do the same thing.  Plus, if I made a standard vegetable curry and put the whole thing with rice, it would be the same as making a curry except with more vegetables and in a different type of presentation.  So that's what I shall do.  Hopefully - finger allowing.

Imagine this as curried chicken, with a vegetable curry and rice ... get the idea?
Now, Friday's Rigatone con cipolle is a recipe that hubby has been making since God was a boy.  It is an incredibly simple recipe of onions sweated down until almost disintegration, with added stock and tomato puree, put over pasta.  When he first introduced me to it, I was unable to eat it because of being horribly allergic to onions.  However, the tiny taster I had tasted pretty darned good.  Pregnancy solved my onion allergy - don't know how, but it did! - and we'd forgotten all about it up until recently, when with the blog having taken a turn for the homely, it suddenly came back to hubby's memory.  So, on the plan it went and he'll be cooking it for us, accompanied by some Aberdeen Angus burgers (without bun, cheese or pickles).  We might be allowed a little bit of mustard, I'll have to see.  LOL

Didn't work all that well with loose meat, either. Tasted good though!
Saturday's lamb flatballs in flatbreads keeps on making me chuckle every time I see the name.  I recently made this dish, except I used lamb meatballs - which kept leaping out of the flatbread in a most unseemly manner.  So, it suddenly dawned on me, why not make them flat?  Now I dislike intensely the word "patty" ~gak~ when used in this context, but that's where I'm headed with the lamb mixture.  Hence, "flatballs".  *grin*  I'll be adding hummus and rocket - you never know, I may even make my own hummus ~sharp intake of breath~, I know!  We'll have a small salad of some denomination and some home made tzatziki too.  Yum!

Sunday is off the menu plan, as we're meeting up with my parents to fulfil a long standing (from January!) lunch date in honour of my Mum's birthday.  We didn't make it when it should have happened, as that was when my poor Dad fell and broke his hip.  Here we are, some five months later, finally being able to have that lunch!  Hooray!

So, after all that excitement, Monday brings us back to normality with a good old pasta bolognese.  In fact, we haven't had a "bolly" for quite some time and it will be nice to re-visit an old friend.  Who knows, we may even push the boat out and have some garlic bread too.  *wink*

Crunchy and toasty and delicious!
I've just been casting my mind back over the last week to find something yummy to tell you about regarding last week's menu plan (yes, I still menu plan even when I'm not writing the blog!) - and I remembered the pork burritos with home made guacamole and salad.  Yum.  I really think that this is my favourite way to deal with a corn wrap.  Fill it full of yummy meat in gorgeous BBQ sauce (as ever, I used Mic's Chilli's El Loco BBQ Sauce - can't get enough of that stuff!), fold, brush with sunflower oil, sprinkle with cheese and bake for 20 minutes.  The crunch from the toasty edges of the wrap is just fabulous - as is the flavour, mixed with the sweet and hot BBQ sauce.  ~happy sigh~

You're salivating aren't you.  I can tell.
Oh and I must tell you about our Father's Day dessert!  The main course was somewhat blown out of the water by visiting Burger King for lunch (we had the chicken casserole the following day) but I managed to rustle up the Tri-berry Eton Mess that was on the menu.  The photograph will give you an indication of the extreme naughtiness involved in this dessert - but then, you don't get low calorie Eton Mess!  Along with the whipped cream and meringue pieces, this one involved halved strawberries, whole raspberries and fresh black cherries.  Oh my word.

Oh!  Which reminds me!  Stoning cherries.  Now if ever there was a culinary task that was guaranteed to create frustration, it is stoning cherries - without a cherry stoner (or pitter).  However, listen up fans!  If you don't have a contraption to help you with this - or you still manage to fire cherry stones across the kitchen - try this.  Get a chopstick - everyone has at least one in their cutlery drawer - and remove the cherry stalk, then insert the chopstick through the stalk end and push the stone out the other side of the cherry.  It truly is as easy as that.  I managed to stone an entire punnet of cherries in less than a quarter of the time it takes to do it with a knife.  Indeed, if your cherries are big enough, sit them on top of a lidless mineral water bottle and push the stones through into the bottle.  Makes clearing up a heck of a lot easier!  Try it, honest injun, it works.  With Picota cherry season literally just around the corner, this could revolutionise your cherry desserts.  Oooh, Picota cherries ... mmmmmmn .....

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