Meal Plan 02/04/19 - 02/08/19

The cold weather is definitely encouraging my hibernation mode but I’m not complaining because my meal planning / prepping game is currently the strongest it’s ever been.

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Monday: Barbecued cheeseburgers. We had our first snow of winter this weekend and there’s something about the frigid temperatures that makes Shawn want to pull out the grill. I don’t question it. I just enjoy my juicy cheeseburger.

Tuesday: Thai Coconut Curry Braised Chicken Thighs served with rice and broccoli.

Wednesday: Sausage, Vegetable, and Cheese Sheet Pan

Thursday: #thestew I saw it on Instagram and I’m highly suggestible. Shawn might cook up some chicken wings if he doesn’t want a vegetarian meal.

Friday: Wonton soup packed with whatever veg is withering away in the fridge.

What’s on your meal plan this week?

Cheesy Veggie Soup

I linked to a broccoli cheese soup in my meal plan but then I went off-script and made my own based on what veg was wilting in my fridge. The result was fantastic so I’m writing it down so I can make it again. This soup isn’t packed full of nutrition but it’s nutritious-ish and sometimes that’s the best I can do.

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Cheesy Veggie Soup
serves 6 - 8

Ingredients

1/4 cup butter
1 onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced (if you scrape out the pulpy bits and seeds, you lose a lot of the heat)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 heaping Tbsp all-purpose flour
2 cups cream or whole milk
4 cups veggie broth
2 heads broccoli, finely chopped (approximately 4 cups)
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
1 tsp yellow mustard
1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Melt butter in large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery, carrots, bell pepper, jalapeno, and cook, stirring often, until veg is softened, 7 - 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook another minute or so until fragrant. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly, for about two minutes, scraping the bottom of the pan so it doesn’t start to burn. I used my enamelled cast iron dutch oven and my flattop wooden spoon to make this soup and this combo works really well.

Add cream (or milk if using) and broth and continue to cook, scraping the bottom of the pan to release any bits stuck to the bottom (that’s where the flavour hides!) Stir in broccoli. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes until everything is sufficiently tender and soup is thickened. 

Buzz with an immersion blender until smooth (or ladle into a blender and blend until smooth, carefully because hot liquids and blenders are terrifying).

Stir in cheese, mustard, Worcestershire Sauce, and add salt and pepper to taste.

We enjoyed this topped with a little bacon and served with sourdough toast and it was decadent. Grady refused to try it but Poppy loved it. I’m not sure if it will freeze well and I don’t think I’m going to get the chance to experiment because we keep eating it.

Meal Plan 01/28/19 - 02/01/19

I am fighting the meal plan this week. It turns out it doesn’t matter how much you plan and prepare, you still need to do the thing where you actually feed the people. We’re dealing with food pickiness and food allergies and, I don’t know, food apathy on my part.

This week’s meal plan was painful to create is what I’m saying.

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Monday: Mac & Cheese served with sauteed chicken, green beans, mushrooms, and shallots.

Tuesday: Chicken, Bacon, Avocado sandwiches on toasted sourdough bread served with broccoli cheddar soup.

Wednesday: Crowd-pleasing Tex Mex Casserole from the Oh She Glows cookbook (except I’m going to use real cheese because we’re not vegan). Served with fresh guacamole and lime crema.

Thursday: Leftovers.

Friday: Rosemary Cheddar Meatloaf served with roasted brussels sprouts and the chunky mushroom soup from last week. It ended up being extra chunky and thick so I froze the leftovers and we’re going to use it like a chunky mushroom sauce.

What’s on your meal plan this week?

Surrounded

Grady graduated to his green belt in karate last week. His school does graduations once per month, and he still had his last stripe to earn, so I didn’t think he’d be graduating until February. But at the last minute, two days before graduation, he tested and passed. 

He has worked so hard and grown so much since starting karate. I know I’m biased but I promise, he’s actually really good. And he loves it. I don’t think I’ve had a cooler parenting moment than seeing my kid excel at something he enjoys.  

Graduation was a bit of a last minute scramble and I didn’t expect anyone to reschedule their lives around Grady’s karate event, but I put the invitation out to all the grandparents. And they all showed up. They watched him move up to the next belt level, they cheered and clapped and took pictures. Afterwards we all went out for dinner and I can’t articulate how much it meant to me to see how my kids are surrounded by love and support. Intellectually I know my kids are loved but to witness the sacrifice (traffic! Other plans! Work stuff!) people made to come stand in a sweaty gym for an hour when Grady’s portion of the ceremony was approximately three minutes, was humbling. My kids, my family, I am so lucky.