Monday, March 28, 2011

Whole Wheat Pasta with Chicken Sausage and Roasted Veggies

coarse salt and ground pepper
6 ounces Italian style cooked chicken sauage, thinly sliced
1 medium eggplant, cut into 1 inch cubes
2 red bell peppers, cut into 1 inch squares
1 medium red onion, halved and cut into 1 inch squares
6 sprigs of fresh thyme
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1/2 pound whole wheat egg noodles

Preheat oven to 450, with racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven. Set a large pot of salted water to boil. On two rimmed baking sheets, toss sausage, vegetables, thyme and oil; season with salt and pepper. Roast until tender, about 25-30 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through baking. Meanwhile cook noodles until al dente. Reserve 1/4 cup pasta water; drain pasta and return to pot. Toss with meat and veggies. Loosen with pasta water as needed and season with salt and pepper.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Green bean, cherry, almond and feta salad

This a slightly altered version of one of my all time favorite salads!

For salad:
Butter lettuce
Harticot Verts (fresh petite green beans), blanched
slivered toasted almonds
dried cherries
feta cheese, crumbled

For dressing:
2 Tablespoons olive oil
3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons blackberry jam
1-2 Tablespoons of sugar (depending on how big your sweet tooth is)
1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
dash of salt

I always make this much dressing to last for the week. Put together the components for the salad and drizzle with dressing... you may not even eat the main course and eat the salad for dessert- it's that good!
p.s.- you can use frozen green beans, but using fresh makes ALL the difference. This wasn't my favorite salad until I tried it with the fresh green beans.

Spaghetti with Meat Sauce


2 large cans crushed tomatoes (I actually use the large cans of marinara sauce from Trader Joe's)

1 small can tomato paste

2 lbs. ground beef

1 Tablespoon oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 bay leaf

1 bunch fresh parsley, chopped

1 8 oz. container sliced crimini mushrooms

3 cloves garlic, crushed

3 Tablespoons Italian seasoning

salt and pepper to taste

1 lb. pasta

parmesan cheese for serving

In a large pot, pour in oil and heat on medium-high until shimmering. Add onions, bay leaf and parsley. Cook until onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and italian seasoning. Cook until mushrooms are cooked through, about 5 more minutes. Add garlic and stir. Once garlic is mixed throughout, aadd the ground beef. Cook until beef is browned, about 6-8 minutes. Add tomato paste and stir. Pour in two cans of tomatoes (or marinara sauce) and stir. Salt and pepper sauce. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for the time it takes you to boil pasta.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Simple Salad

The 'simple salad' at our house is this:


shaved cucumber

baby tomatoes

chopped green onions

salt, pepper and a sprinkling of rice vinegar

Sometimes, nearing the end of the week, there will be some random veggies hanging out in the fridge. At that point our 'simple salad' is: lettuce and everything else that is still fresh.

So, when simple salad comes around on the weekly menu, it is supposed to be just that, simple.salad. Yay greens!

{this photo looks like a Trader Joe's ad}


After a verrrry long hiatus, I am back in full force!
Here is what the week looks like for us!
After shopping, I have averaged each dinner to about $3.75 per person for a family of four. (Capitalized items are recipes other than my own)
27: spaghetti and meat sauce with simple salad
28: Chicken Sausage and Roasted Vegetable Pasta, Green Bean Salad
29: Julia Child's Beef Bourguignon, egg noodles, simple salad
30: Herb and Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken, Whole Wheat Cous Cous with Carrots, broccoli, Green Bean Salad
31: Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry, brown rice, asian salad
1: Order out!
2: Hoisin Marinated Pork Chops, Tamarind Fried Rice, soy beans
3: Sausage and Wild Mushroom Pizza, grilled artichokes
4: Roasted Vegetable Meatloaf with Mustard Mashed Potatoes, peas, simple salad
5: Lamb Chops with Rosemary Butter, Lemon Barley Pilaf, Pancetta Green Beans
6: black bean and pork enchiladas, simple salad
7: Baked Potatoes with Rib Eye Steak Hash, asparagus, simple salad
8: bruscetta pizza, simple salad
9: Mushroom and Root Vegetable pie, greek salad

2 artichokes
1 pkg baby tomatoes
2 pkgs broccoli
7 carrots
1 cucumber
1 eggplant
1 pkg fresh basil
2 bunches fresh parsley
1 pkg fresh thyme
1 pkg fresh marjoram
1 pkg fresh rosemary
1 small piece ginger
2 pkg fresh green beans
1 pkg green onions
1 leek
1 lemon
8 pkgs lettuce/bagged salad mix
3 pkgs sliced mushrooms
2 pkgs whole mushrooms
2 cans sliced olives
7 onions
1 parsnip
1 pkg pearl onions
8 red bell peppers
2 red jalepenos
4 russet potatoes
1 rutabaga
2 shallots
1 pkg spinach
3 lbs yukon gold potatoes
1 pkg feta
4 oz goat cheese
1/2 lb jack cheese
1 1/2 lbs mozzarella cheese (shredded or ready to grate)
1 container fresh mozzarella
1 wedge parmesan cheese
1 pkg dried cherries
1 pkg slivered toasted almonds
2 pkgs pizza dough
1 pkg brown rice
2 pkgs corn tortillas
1 pkg egg noodles
1 lb pasta (spaghetti)
1 pkg pearl barley
1 pkg whole wheat cous cous
2 cans black beans
1 can chipotle peppers in adobo
2 containers beef broth
2 containers chicken broth
1 container vegetable broth
2 large cans crushed tomatoes (or marinara sauce)
1 small can tomato paste
1 bottle red wine
1 bag frozen peas
1 bag frozen soy beans
1/2 lb. good quality bacon
4 chicken breasts
4 lbs. ground beef
4 lamb chops
3 oz pancetta
1 lb pork shoulder
6 pork chops
1 rib eye steak
1 lb. sirloin steak
6 oz chicken sausage (cooked)
2 italian sauasges (raw in casing)
3 lbs. stew meat
tamarind candy

pantry items:
oyster sauce
black bean garlic sauce
fresh garlic
red food coloring
garlic powder
chili powder
ground cumin
baking powder
hoisin sauce
soy sauce
crushed red pepper flakes
olive oil
canola oil
bay leaf
italian seasoning
rice vinegar
red wine vinegar
blackberry jam