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Menu Monday 26

Heather says

Well, last week didn’t work out as planned. There were a lot more let’s make do with what we have that’s quick dinners, but I was able to reshoot one of the most popular recipes on this site.

Quick beef and cabbage skillet, it’s a handful of ingredients and thirty minutes until you’ve got a warm, filling (and believe it or not paleo if you’re into that) meal.


Quick Beef and Cabbage Skillet HE101

If I keep this up and manage to re-shoot one recipe a week, I may manage to catch up by 2018.

I kid.


I also started to make an interesting chicken fajita soup but I left the wheat-free flour somewhere else and ended up making a tortilla soup that the family loved, but it was too thrown together to write up. It’s still movement in the right direction and I’ll take that.

So what’s up for next week? Well, I’ll be sharpening my knives if the sharpening stone and ceramic rod arrive (they should).  Lent starts this week and I’m going to buckle down on the whole let’s not eat out thing, unless I’m on the road for work. I have to have the practical caveat in there, sorry.

And on the menu:

  • Monday – Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, cabbage, carrots
  • Tuesday – We’re headed out with some friends for Fat Tuesday, otherwise it’d be the perfect excuse for Shrimp Etouffee
  • Wednesday – Lentil casserole, baked sweet potatoes, kale (Ash Wednesday)
  • Thursday – Taco soup, tortilla chips (or maybe I’ll remake last week’s soup with a lot more attention to detail)
  • Friday – Fish and tomato stew, with bread and / or potatoes
  • Saturday – Sloppy joes / tacos, broccoli with cheese sauce (experimenting with a gf version) and what the heck chips
  • Sunday – Let’s shoot for the Chicken, mushrooms, and peppers dish, rice and peas, acorn squash

What will you be cooking this week?

Are you trying anything new?


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Weekly Menu 25

Heather says

Last week turned out to be a really good week overall.

I used my stick blender to experiment with a sauce for fish tacos, it still needs some tweaking before I share it, but we’re on to something good. I didn’t make pho on Wednesday, instead I went with a Must Go style soup, loosely based on Sausage and Sweet Potato Soup.


And then, I finally broke out some of my photography stuff and managed to get a decent picture of chicken bog.

Lowcountry Chicken Bog

This is a big step for me; I just haven’t had the mental or personal bandwidth to do this. And if any of you have any idea what I have done with my tripod, that’d be good to know. I guess it’s just lost in that mental fog of 2013.  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Anyhow, let’s keep the ball rolling and make plans for this week:

  • Monday – CORN (That’s clean out refrigerator night as there is a ton of that chicken bog left)
  • Tuesday – It’s like Taco Tuesday, but on a. .. oh, Tuesday. Buffalo Chicken Tacos & BLT Salad (If there are any good tomatoes, doubtful but a girl can hope)
  • Wednesday – Let’s try that pho idea again… maybe, but definitely soup of some sort
  • Thursday – Spaghetti (squash) and meatballs 
  • Friday – Baked Fish and Chips, Broccoli
  • Saturday – Chicken roasted with mushrooms, peppers, and onions -It’s definitely time to redo these photos- Roasted potatoes, some kind of green vegetable or salad, it’s going to depend on what looks during the week.

Here’s hoping we can keep that momentum going and have another good week.

Is there anything you are looking forward to trying this week?

What did you make last week that worked (or didn’t)?

Submitted to: Menu Plan Monday

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Weekly Menu 24

Heather says

As I’ve mentioned before the menu plans I post are a frame work of what we’ll probably eat. Last week I experimented and instead of Thai coconut soup I decided to give Thai curry a try. Curry is something of a comfort food for me, I especially love it in the winter.

Not too long ago I saw on a Reddit thread, someone proclaiming, it’s not real curry unless you use a paste. You know, anytime someone uses the word real to describe anything, whether a food or a person, I should just tune out and find something else to do. But noooOOoo, I never learn.

In the past, I’ve never used a paste, I always heated the spices in the oil to release their flavor. The paste I tried could be summed up with: Meh. Generally, when trying a new recipe or technique I stick to the directions the first go around and riff on it the next attempt. I should have gone with my gut and used far more seasoning than the recipe suggested. It was edible, but definitely not the experience I was aiming for. I’ll give it another try in a week or two. Maybe.

Did you try anything new?

I finally got around to it and made Bobbie’s blue cheese dressing as a dip for chips and veggies last night during that big sports thing. I am now sorry I hadn’t made it sooner, homemade blue cheese is worth far more than the 3 minutes it takes to stir it up. Give it a try and let me know what you think.

And on to this week’s menu:

  • Monday – A giant salad with leftover pulled pork and blue cheese dressing
  • Tuesday – fish tacos, Southwestern salad
  • Wednesday – pho ?
  • Thursday – Spaghetti (squash)
  • Friday – Car picnic. I have a surprise for the minions, I don’t think they’ll mind.
  • Saturday – out
  • Sunday – Chicken Bog, Collard Greens, Cornbread

What are you having? Is there anything you’re looking forward to?

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Weekly Menu Plan #23

Heather says

Well, this is a safe space, right?

I fell off the wagon last week. We not only ate out, we also had what the kids call a “floor picnic movie night”. The latter is how I make serving raw vegetables, cheese, and other usually lunch but not terribly exciting foods palatable.

What’s my excuse? Sick kids and just being tired of “people”. By people, I don’t mean you, of course. You would never be rude to me or my support team; it’s part of why I like you. Naturally.

So here we go, a new week, a new menu, a new chance to try to be a little more on the ball:

What will you be having this week?

Are you serving anything special during that game that likes to be overly-protective of its branding?

And? If you need a pick-me-up to get you going, this is one of my kid’s coaches after they won their championship. (He did this before and after every game and I keep this video on my phone for when I need a little peptalk)

Let’s do this.

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Menu Monday: In a “Back-slidden’ Condition”

Heather says:

Before reading, I suggest you go ahead and check any judgey-mcjudgerson pants at the door. We all have our fail moments in one area or another.

It has been a rough couple of months around here. I’ve been adjusting to having a part-time job outside of the home, working on my start-up SpinPicks, and trying, trying to keep everything moving here at Home-Ec 101.

Recently, someone hit my car in a parking lot while I was in a coffee shop working. If you don’t know me very well, you may not know that my super power is the ability to leap to the worst conclusion in a single bound. I even bought the anxiety girl t-shirt (I’m setting the stage for the next bit). Let me just tell you, for a person like me, having a cop walk up to you and ask if you drive [description of my car] and ask if your last name is Solos is quite scary. I was so relieved that it wasn’t anything serious that the poor guy who tagged my car kept commenting “You are so calm about this.”

My desktop computer, until a few days ago, has been nothing but a giant, paperweight that pretends to act like a computer until I begin something important, then it reverts back to paperweight mode -that’s a big part of the reason for the recent dearth of recipes… no pictures, no posts.

Last week I received a letter from my publisher saying that Home-Ec 101: Skills for Everyday Living will not be reprinted. Yeah, that’s a let down, but there’s nothing I can do about it. If you want to get a copy, I suggest you hurry up and order it.

So what got left behind in all of this?


Don’t worry, the kids still were fed 3x a day and almost all of the time it was fairly healthy – there was one night where I said to heck with, it gave them each an apple, and then we went out for ice cream sundaes because I was done, just done. Go ahead and feel smug, I doubt the department of social services is going to get too upset over that one.

Oh, you want to know what the back-slidden condition reference is, don’t you?

Many years ago, in my college-ish years, I dated a young man from Spartanburg, SC. Once while we were in the upstate he took me to the place where the Marshall Tucker band used to play. I can’t remember the name, just that there was live country music, dinner, lots of sweet tea, and dancing. Apparently one of the highlights of the evening’s entertainment included the owner asking the audience, by show of hands what denomination they were, “Do we have any Episcopalians, Lutherans, Catholics,” etc Finally he would get to, “How about any Baptists?” insert a pause for more than half of the crowd to raise their hands, “Currently in a back-slidden conidition.” ha ha ha

All of that was to say, my menu planning and dinner preparation is in a back-slidden condition and I’m working on fixing it.

Saturday I sat down with my sitter, who is an honorary part of the family and my life-line to sanity at this moment, and we planned out this week’s menu:

  • Monday – Patty melts, oven roasted broccoli
  • Tuesday – Baked Pork Egg Rolls, Fried Rice, Stir Fried Vegetables (hoping to get pics of fried rice preparation for the recipe index here)
  • Wednesday – C.O.R.N (I made a giant batch of etouffee on Saturday and brought some in to my co-workers)
  • Thursday - BBQ Chicken (leg quarters on the grill, cooked by indirect heat, low and slow), pasta salad, steamed green beans
  • Friday -Breakfast for dinner (She is cooking)
  • Saturday – Blackened tilapia with strawberry salsa, rice pilaf, some manner of steamed vegetales
  • Sunday is to be determined by how working the brunch shift goes. If it was anything like this week? It may be leftovers or I may load up the kids and head to the local Mexican joint and let someone wait on me. I don’t know.  Or it will be the planned Caesar Salad with grilled chicken.

What are you eating this week? What do you do when cooking turns into a chore?