Monday, November 23, 2009

Menu Plan Series - Part VI

Important Things to Remember:

• There are certain things I always make sure to have on hand and hence rarely have to buy. I’m going to list them here and you can add or delete ingredients that fit to your tastes and needs (this is an example of ingredients I notice that I use frequently):
  • o Flour
  • o Sugars
  • o Yeast
  • o Salt (of course)
  • o Garlic Salt or powder
  • o Onion Salt or powder
  • o Basil
  • o Parsley
  • o Oregano
  • o Italian Seasoning
  • o Season Salt
  • o Chili powder
  • o Garlic
  • o Onions
  • o Potatoes
  • o Beans (black, pinto and kidney)
  • o Veggies (any kind – if I have them, I can fix them)
  • o Cheese
  • o Sandwich meat (unless you are pb&j kind of person)
  • o Milk
  • o Eggs
  • o Butter
• I rarely plan lunch and breakfast menus. For the most part, we eat cereal for breakfast, including homemade granola and oatmeal. Occasionally (usually just the weekends because I value my sleep more than fixing something grandiose during the week before my DH has to go to work) we will have something different for breakfast, but it’s always flexible and I always have the ingredients on hand (muffins, pancakes, toast, eggs, hash browns (potatoes), etc). For lunches we typically eat sandwiches or leftovers from the meals during the week. This helps assure that the leftovers won’t go bad and it saves me the stresses of planning three times the meals every week.

Check back on Wednesday for the 20-day menu I'm sharing as Part VII of the Menu Plan Series!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Menu Plan Series - Part V

Important Things to Remember:
  • Pretty much any recipe can be modified. If it calls for an ingredient you wouldn’t normally buy and will never use except for that recipe, it can possibly be left out. For example, a lot of recipes will call for a spice that I never use – I just leave it out OR substitute that spice for something I know I have and will like (for main spices this is not recommended). If the recipe calls for some kind of meat you never use, just substitute something different (for example, one of the recipes I have calls for shrimp – I don’t like shrimp and won’t buy it; I’ll use chicken instead). Cheeses are the same way (why buy 5 different kinds of cheese when 2 or 3 works just well and will save me money?), as well as pastas. I also modify amounts. If a recipe calls for a pound of ground beef, I often use half. If a recipe calls for 4 chicken breasts, I’ll use 1 or 2. If I want more protein than what I’ll get by modifying the amount of meat, I’ll add beans to the recipe (and believe it or not, it’ll still taste good!).
  • I almost never buy a name brand or ready-made product. If a recipe calls for Kraft dressing, I’ll either buy the off-brand or make my own. If a recipe calls for ready-to-eat bacon or chicken strips, I’ll buy it raw and cook it myself. Yes, it might save you a little bit of time to buy ready-cooked, but you’ll save more money going the “old-fashioned” route. There are occasions when buying ready-made is best but not very often.
  • Almost everything is cheaper frozen, meats included. Some people really don't like to buy frozen meats and that's fine. Juices and Vegetables are also cheaper frozen. Of course, produce always tastes better fresh, but especially in off-season times anyway, you may as well go with frozen.
  • There are some things that will freeze and keep just fine that most people don’t think about. I have frozen cream cheese many times and it always turns out fine (just defrost it in the refrigerator), any cheeses (they usually thaw better if they are shredded before freezing), milk (just pour a little bit out first so it doesn’t explode when freezing and then be sure to shake it up when it’s thawed), and egg substitute (which we always buy because it’s healthier). If you see something on sale that you will probably use a lot of (but not before it all goes bad), buy a bunch and freeze it (assuming, of course, you have freezer room). Just remember that if you freeze anything to use containers and packaging that is "freezer approved". You wouldn't want to buy extra things and then have it all go bad just because you didn't put it in the right kind of container.
  • As much as possible, I try to make my own breads. This doesn’t always happen, but it is so much cheaper to make your own rather than buy and they always end up tasting better. Most “bread” recipes that call for a bread machine can be made just as easily by hand and really are not as time consuming as we assume. If you make more loaves of bread (or any other bread product) than you can eat very quickly, you can always freeze it and just pull it out the night before you use it and let it thaw on your counter (doughs can also be frozen: just be sure to add extra yeast to help be sure it won't all die and then thaw it in the refrigerator). Also, bread keeps for a little longer than normal if you refrigerate it. And remember that proper packaging applies to breads too!

Check back on Monday for Part VI of the Menu Plan Series!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Menu Plan Series - Part IV

• Each week, usually a Saturday or Sunday, I plan the meals for that week, taking the meals from the 20-day menu. When I make that plan, I review the ingredients I need for each meal and check to see if I need any perishable items that I don’t already have. If I do need other items then I’ll go to the store and buy only those items to make my meal. Everything else I should already have. This part of the menu planning is really easy and fast.

• Some of the biggest excuses I hear about not wanting to menu plan are:
1. Things might change and I may not get to all my meals

What I say to that: So what? For one thing, this is why I only plan for 20 meals. For another thing, if you’ve already planned the meal and have most of the ingredients on hand, it will just make next months, or even next weeks, menu planning that much easier.
2. What if I get to that day and I’m not in the mood for what I planned?

What I say to that: Have something that’s specified for another day. Just because it’s written down, doesn’t mean you have to have it in the order it’s written.
3. I don’t like to be tied down to specific things I have to eat.

What I say to that: You don’t have to be. I make my menu as you’ve seen listed in my Menu Plan Monday posts. However, it can be just as easy to simply say, “these are the meals we’re eating this week” and then when each day rolls around, choose which of those meals you’ll fix. Or simply choose daily the meals you want from the 20-day menu. There really isn’t an obligation – it’s entirely up to you!

Check back on Friday for Part V of the Menu Plan Series!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Menu Plan Series - Part III

  • Each month, I go through my lists and my cookbooks (occasionally – honestly, I don’t go through those as often as my lists) and pick 20 mail course meal ideas from both lists. These recipes go into a new document titled “20 Day Menu.” At the beginning of each meal idea, I list it’s main ingredient (much like the column headers I mentioned above) and then alphabetize them so I can see how my balance is (for example, I’d list a meal idea like this: “Pasta: Cheesy Stuffed Shells (to try)” – the “(to try)” at the end tells me where to find the recipe and the “pasta” at the beginning tells me what the main ingredient is). I’ll share a 20-day menu with you later {and I’ll include the shopping list and try to include as many recipes as possible}!
  • After the 20 day menu is planned, I create a shopping list. This is perhaps the most tedious part of the process, but I promise it’s really not that bad. I take each meal idea and write down its ingredients {or just copy & paste them since all my recipes are typed up on my computer}, separating them into columns that make my shopping easier (my columns are: Produce, Dairy, Canned Goods, Meats, Frozen, Baked Goods, Breads, and Spices). Then I consolidate all the ingredients (for example, if I have 3 recipes that each call for 2 cloves of garlic, instead of writing “2 cloves of garlic” 3 times I will write “6 cloves of garlic”) and I then have one big shopping list. I do this whole process on a word document which helps prevent lots of writing and erasing and it makes consolidating the ingredients really easy.
  • After I make up both lists, I’ll print out my shopping list and make one big shopping trip each month. On this main shopping trip I’ll purchase all the non-perishable items, and some of the perishable items I know I’ll use within the next week. I usually make this main trip to Winco, though you could shop at any store. I just found that many of the prices at Winco are much better than at my local grocery store or even Wal-Mart (though you should always try to price compare if saving money is your goal – sometimes you’ll think you’re getting a deal when you really aren’t). You could easily shop at Costco or Sam’s Club for this monthly trip.

Check back on Wednesday for Part IV of the Menu Plan Series!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Menu Plan Series - Part II

{note, this part is a little longer}

• Have some lists and systems that make menu planning easier (in addition to cookbooks you use frequently). I’m going to tell you all the things I’ve done with my recipes and how they are useful for menu planning, including the two types of lists I have that make my menu planning so easy.
  • First: I don’t have very many cookbooks. I have a couple of reasons for this: one, I find recipes mostly online and through friends & family so I don’t need an extra cookbook that just takes up space in my house; two, I used to have like 5 or 6 different cook books but I discovered after having them all for about 3 years I only had a recipe or two in each book that I used. I copied the recipe (making note of where I found it, of course) and gave the books away.
  • Second: As I said, I get most of my recipes from family, friends and online from food sites and blogs. I like to have physical copies of my recipes rather than just on a computer {online} so I have two binders full of these recipes. Each binder has tabs separating different categories so that I can be organized about my recipes. These binders replaced my old 3x5 cards (I typed up all my recipes that were on 3x5 cards and then printed them and placed them in the binders). Included in each binder is every recipe I get a family member or friend that I like {tip: never save a recipe you don’t like. It’s kinda pointless} and when I see one online that I want to try, I print it off and put it in the binder.
  • Third: I have a couple of lists that are very important to my menu planning.
  1. List #1: This list is called “Meal Ideas”, which is a Word Document so I can easily make changes to it when necessary. This is the list where I keep ideas for meals that we have tried and which have been designated “keepers.” I organize this list by placing each meal idea under a column header which designates its main ingredient (my column headers are listed as follows: Beef, Chicken, Pasta, Potatoes, Vegetarian, Seafood, Other, Crock-pot). This method of organization helps me to be sure I don’t plan 15 recipes each month with beef, making it easy to create a balance. This list is what I use to help me remember the recipes I’ve put in the Recipe Binders and it comes in very handy when I meal plan.
  2. List #2: I love trying new recipes. I follow numerous cooking blogs and meal sites (,, etc) where I get lots of meal ideas. Whenever I find a recipe that I think we would like, I put its title on a Word Document list I have called “To-Try Recipes List” under the category header that would be most appropriate (categories are similar to the List #1’s categories)
  3. List #3: After writing the title of the new recipe on the “To-Try List”, I will copy the recipe and paste it (along with the URL of where I found it – giving proper credit is a very important thing) into another Word Document titled “To-Try Recipes”. Then when I decide I want to try one of my new recipes, I use the search option available with Word to find the recipe. After I’ve used a recipe and if we decide we like it, I move the title from List #2 to List #1 and I put the printed copy of the recipe in it’s respective binder, where it will forever have a home.
Note: If I find a new recipe that is not online (i.e., received it from a friend or a cooking group and it’s already in print), I put it in my binders and put the recipe name on the “To-Try Recipes List”, along with where exactly I put it.
This system may not work for you. Figure out a system that will work for you and get it in place and organized. If your system isn't organized, your menu planning will be a real hassle.

Check back on Monday for Part III of the Menu Plan Series!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

A few changes

Well, folks, there will be some changes to this blog in the near future. I'm still coming to terms with everything that has to change, but that's okay. Someday I'll get used to it.
I found out this week that I'm Pre-Insulin Resistant. Basically, this means that my blood sugar skyrockets when I eat sugars/carbs because my cells don't allow the insulin in to help absorb the sugar. I'm still trying to grasp everything involved in this new development. I do know that if things don't change then I am really likely to become diabetic. This news means a lot of new things for me - a lot of lifestyle changes will be occurring. The biggest thing is that my eating habits have to change. I'm still trying to figure out all the particulars about what I can/cannot eat, but essentially, I have to give up carbs and sugars and starches. I'm struggling with that because this is my favorite things to eat/make include sugars and carbs. However, to me, it's more important to make this eating change than to become diabetic or have other problems. I have a lot of things I want to do in my life and I don't want something stopping me. That would be rude.
Anyway, in concurrence with this lifestyle change, this blog is also going be to changing. I made this blog to document and share with others the recipes I make. Since I will have to change the kind of things I make, the kind of recipes I share will be changing as well. I have dozens of other recipes I will still share with you soon but then once those are all finished I probably won't be sharing sugar-y, carb-y, starch-y recipes anymore. I'm going to start looking for insulin-resistant-friendly recipes that have lots of yummy flavor {cuz I HAVE to have lots of yummy flavor} that I will make and share. Please be patient with me as I learn how to make these changes and new foods. I may be slow at posting very often but I will post, I promise. Please just be patient with me and enjoy the rest of the recipes and the menu planning series!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Menu Plan Series - Part I

Now, I do understand that this is just my method of planning. I do it because it works for me. I’m sharing it with you because it works for me! And it’s really not that bad – when I first started thinking about monthly meal planning it was a bit too daunting for me and I was afraid. And honestly, the first couple of months were a bit of struggle, mostly just getting my lists all made up and remembering to make the menu! But now that I have the system in the place, it is really super easy and I hardly spend any time on the planning each month. Also, I know that some people will make their menus based on weekly sales adds from grocers in the area. I don’t really do this because I hate sales adds - I really hate looking at them and trying to find things that are buried under a massive number of pictures. However, this can be a good way to also save money, and it would still be easy enough to make all the plans – just make the 20-day menu as you want and then each week plan meals that include ingredients from the sales coming up.
  • I do monthly meal planning. This can sound overwhelming. However, I’ve found that it works really well for me. Allow me explain a few reasons why and then, in the next part of this series, I’ll go into my method for my menu planning:
  1. Menu planning in general saves me a lot of time and money. I don’t have to sit in the kitchen for an hour every night trying to decide what to fix; everyone is happy because we don’t get “grumpy” waiting for food since I already know what to fix; and if I have meal ideas ready to go, we are less likely to go out to eat or order in.
  2. I only actually plan dinner meals for 20 days. This gives me a little wiggle room to make other plans – like go to a parent’s or friend’s house for dinner, go out on a date, or have leftovers (which we always do because there are just two of us). Planning 20 meals at one time may sound like it takes a lot of time, but once you’ve done it a couple times and you have the lists below I’m going to suggest you make for yourselves, it’ll be a cinch (and you only have to do the planning once a month – or as I’ve started doing, every time you think you’ll like something for the next month, add it to your next list right away; you’ll have less to plan all at one time that way).
  3. I do almost all my shopping at once (minus some perishables that have to be purchased on a more frequent basis). I’ve learned that the less frequently I’m in the store, the less often I’ll buy things that aren’t on my “list” and really aren’t necessary. It saves money. I promise.
  4. I almost always have leftover meal ideas at the end of the month. Even if I only have a couple of meal ideas that I didn’t get to use that month, that’s still a couple meals I won’t have to buy ingredients for or plan.

Check back Saturday for Part II of the Menu Plan Series!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Menu Plan Series

This completely new territory for me and, I'll be honest, I'm a little nervous! I've never really done such an involved series before and so I hope I don't bore you all to death!

I've noticed over the last few weeks that a lot of people I know who want to menu plan but they don't know how or the idea scares them.
I'm sharing this because I don't want anyone to be afraid of menu planning. Really, it's quite easy and it helps me a lot.
As I share, I ask that you remember that this is just the way I do things. There are a lot of different ways to do this, and in fact, I challenge you to come up with your own way of menu planning. It will be more rewarding (and make more sense to you) if you do.
So anyway, you can consider this the official announcement of the Menu Plan Series starting tomorrow!

Note: The Menu Plan Series contains 8 parts. I know that is a lot, but I do have a couple reasons. 1) I tried to keep each part as short as possible without adding too many parts. I don't like extremely long blog posts to read and I'm sure you don't either; 2) I tried to be as detailed as possible so there isn't any confusion. But if there is, please let me know!; and 3) two of the parts contain the actual menu and the shopping list (more details on that in the series!) so, technically, parts 7 & 8 can go without being read!

For all the posts on this menu planning series, see below:
Menu Plan Series - Part I
Menu Plan Series - Part II
Menu Plan Series - Part III
Menu Plan Series - Part IV
Menu Plan Series - Part V
Menu Plan Series - Part VI
Menu Plan Series - Part VII
Menu Plan Series - Part VIII

PS - I made that little "button" above just for this series ... isn't it crazy fun? I'm certainly not a designer, nor do I have the kind of program that would actually make it good, but heck, I had to have something! :)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Easy Pleasing Meatloaves

This meatloaf recipe is pretty good. It’s very simple and quick which is a plus right away. It also has a pretty good flavor thanks to the stuffing mix. I’m not a huge fan of the straight BBQ sauce as the glaze {I’m not a huge fan of BBQ sauce period – it seems like the more I have it the less I like it} but for simplicities sake, it works well {and most people would like it just fine}. I already posted my favorite meatloaf recipe but if you'd like, this is a pretty tasty and easy substitute.

Easy Pleasing Meatloaves

Prep Time: 10 min
Total Time: 40 min
Makes: 8 servings, one half meat loaf each

2 lb ground beef
1 pkg (6 oz) Stove Top Stuffing Mix for Pork
1 cup water
2 eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup Kraft Original Barbecue Sauce, divided

Preheat oven to 400°F. Mix meat, stuffing mix, water, eggs and ¼ cup of the barbecue sauce.
Shape meat mixture into four oval loaves {You can see that I made mine "mini" by shaping them into a muffin tin}. Place, side-by-side, in foil-lined shallow baking pan. Top with the remaining ¼ cup barbecue sauce.
Bake 30 min or until cooked through (160°F). Cut each meat loaf in half to serve.

For best results, prepare using lean varieties of ground beef, such as ground round or ground sirloin.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

White Bread

This is our favorite bread recipe to date {I have no idea why it's called "Amish White Bread" ... maybe it's a favorite in Amish communities, I don't know}. It’s so simple – which I absolutely love – and it has a fantastic flavor. I will include my thoughts throughout the recipe instructions and then for convenience sake {and those of you who don’t want my detailed instructions} I’ll include the recipe once more at the bottom of this post.
If you’re scared of making homemade bread, don’t be. Really, it’s not as bad as instructions may make it seem and pretty much anyone can do it. Really, all it takes is practice to get to where you feel like the bread you make is at your level of perfection. So keep trying! I’m positive you’ll enjoy the final product if you just give it a go, plus you’ll save money by not buying bread!
If you want to practice but don’t want to make two loaves in case it doesn’t turn out the way you want, just make one. I’m including the modified version of the ingredients list to make just one loaf {all directions will be the same, excepting the dividing of the dough into two loaves – just form one loaf instead}.

Amish White Bread

  • 2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
  • o – for this, I usually just turn the tap on to hot and let it run until it is warm enough that I can hold my hand under it for a couple of seconds since I don’t have a thermometer. It is imperative that your water is neither too hot nor cold because if it is, the yeast will not activate the way it needs to make the bread rise
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 1-1/2 Tbsp. active dry yeast
  • 1-1/2 tsp. salt
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • o – I’ve been using canola oil and it’s worked perfectly every time.
  • 6 cups bread flour

1. In a large bowl, dissolve the sugar in warm water, and then stir in yeast. Allow to proof until yeast resembles a creamy foam.
This is called “proofing yeast”, which basically means that you put the necessary ingredients into the bowl, mix them as best you can and then wait 5-10 minutes while the yeast activates. You will know that the yeast is good {or also that your water wasn’t too hot} if within 5 minutes the mixture is nice and foamy. If it’s not, you can always try again to make sure the water wasn’t too hot/cold to begin with. I always just wait 5 minutes as that is usually the perfect amount of time.
2. Mix salt and oil into the yeast. Mix in flour one cup at a time.
3. Knead dough on a lightly floured surface until smooth.
This is what you have to start doing once the dough gets too hard to stir in the bowl anymore. I use my kitchen aid to do all the kneading for me but hand kneading is really not difficult. Just make sure that the table/surface and your hands are both well floured. I’m not a huge fan of the term “lightly floured” when referring to bread, especially if it’s still in the very sticky stages. You don’t have to worry about using too much flour as long as you use flour that would be measured into the bread anyway {for example, you need six cups – say you’ve put in four and want to begin hand kneading. Pour half a cup of flour onto the table and spread it around just a little, and then the other half cup can go directly into the dough. All the flour that is on the table {and will end up in the dough} is flour that is supposed to be there anyway}. Once your surface and hands are well floured, turn the dough onto the surface and, using the heel of your hand, begin pressing the dough into the flour, turning the dough over and around every couple of times you “knead” it with your hands. You’ll get the hang of it {sorry I don’t have any pictures of this process – as I said, I always use my kitchen aid and I would have liked to have picture directions for you but it’s really hard to take pictures and knead dough at the same time … if you still need help figuring out how to do this process, let me know}. You’ll know the dough is ready because it gets really nice and smooth. It may be just barely sticky still and that’s okay.
4. Place in a well oiled bowl, and turn dough to coat.
This is a very important step. If you choose not to oil your bowl, the dough will stick to the bowl while rising and it will really be a pain to get out again. Just trust me: oil the bowl and make sure all the dough is lightly coated with the oil.

5. Cover with a damp cloth. Allow to rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
Usually what I do is put the bowl with my dough on the stove top with the oven on. The heat from the oven helps the dough to rise really well, and in some cases, even quicker than the recommended amount of time. Of course, this does make your house really warm in the summer, but in these cold, winter months upon us, it’s really quite perfect for heating the place up without turning the heat on!
6. Punch dough down. {Yes really – just punch the dough down. This gets rid of all the air bubbles that accumulate in the dough while rising, which is good or you could end up with air pockets in your final product}.
7. Knead for a few minutes in a bit of oil {this eliminates the need to add extra flour, which you don’t really want to do}, and divide in half.
This kneading process is very important – if you don’t knead your bread enough it will be really crumbly and possibly create holes in the middle of the loaf when it’s finished. Honestly, I can’t tell you how to know that the dough has been kneaded enough. It’s really just a trial and error kind of thing. I usually knead the whole batch for about 3 minutes and then each loaf for another couple minutes afterward.
8. Shape into loaves, and place into two well oiled 9x5 inch loaf pans.
I’m sure you can use cooking spray to grease the loaf pans but I always just use oil – I already have it out because that’s what I’m using the keep the bread from sticking to the table and my hands anyway. And the oil is a genius idea – it really works well.

9. Allow to rise for 30 minutes, or until dough has risen 1 inch above pans.
For me, this can be anywhere from 30-40 minutes. I like my loaves to be nice and high when I cook them.

10. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes.
Here’s a secret: if the bread is still doughy inside but certainly done on the outside, your oven was heated too high. The next time you do it, turn the temperature down about 25 degrees and it should help with that problem.
Another secret: if you like crusty bread, remove the loaves from the pans as soon possible {you really should let them sit for about 5 minutes and then make sure to run a butter knife around the edges before removing} and place on cooling racks. If you like the crust to be a little softer, you can leave the loaves in the pans a little longer {though you don’t want to leave them too long or they’ll be soggy – ich, soggy bread!} and brush the tops with butter. I don’t know why but melted butter softens the crust of the bread.
And there you have it: homemade bread! Congrats!

Amish White Bread
READY IN 2 Hrs 30 Min
Original recipe yield 2 - 9x5 inch loaves

• 2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
• 2/3 cup white sugar
• 1-1/2 Tbsp. active dry yeast
• 1-1/2 tsp. salt
• ¼ cup vegetable oil
• 6 cups bread flour

1. In a large bowl, dissolve the sugar in warm water, and then stir in yeast. Allow to proof until yeast resembles a creamy foam.
2. Mix salt and oil into the yeast. Mix in flour one cup at a time. Knead dough on a lightly floured surface until smooth. Place in a well oiled bowl, and turn dough to coat. Cover with a damp cloth. Allow to rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
3. Punch dough down. Knead for a few minutes, and divide in half. Shape into loaves, and place into two well oiled 9x5 inch loaf pans. Allow to rise for 30 minutes, or until dough has risen 1 inch above pans.
4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes.

Cut in Half:
Makes 1 loaf:

1. 1 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
2. 1/3 cup white sugar
3. 2-1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
4. 3/4 teaspoon salt
5. 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
6. 3 cups bread flour

Monday, November 2, 2009

Menu Plan Monday ~ 11/02

Check out Menu Plan Monday at I'm an Organizing Junkie to find other great menu ideas!


I know I missed a week. Last week I came down with something weird {I know it wasn't the flu - I think it was some weird cold or something} and I just didn't much feel like doing anything. Many things were sadly neglected, including my menu planning! But I'm back on track now.
Meal Highlight {from last menu}: Tuna Casserole. As I said, I was going to try to come up with something a little on my own and DH & I were both pleasantly surprised at how "un-fishy" the casserole tasted. I'm sure we'll have it again!

Monday: Swedish Pancakes

Tuesday: Minestrone Soup {I'm craving it!!}

Wednesday: Mac ‘n Cheese

Thursday: Leftover Smorgasbord

Friday: Cheesy Stuffed Shells

Saturday: Dinner in the Swiss Alps {recipe from Jessica Smith}

Sunday: Garlic Chicken Pasta w/Spinach and Breadsticks

Other goodies I plan to make this week:
Cookies {for the sister I visit teach}


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