Friday, November 20, 2009

Meal Planning

I'm working on our menu for the next two weeks. Since the start of our budget, we buy groceries twice a month (plus little trips for produce and soy milk) and I have to plan a lot better. Right now I need to lean heavily on easy meals because of my back. Plus, I have to include a few things so simple the dog can cook them for when I'm completely laid up. While this isn't completely "normal" for us, it is a little glimpse into our life

Here's my list:

1. Tofu Cacciatore: browned seasoned tofu, lots of veggies, spaghetti sauce
2. Faux Riccotta and spinach stuffed shells topped with leftover cacciatore sauce.
3. Curried Lentils and Potatoes with fresh chapati bread served over rice
4. Tomato, spinach, lentil curry soup: made from leftover curried lentils, tomato paste, broth and an immersion blender
5. Corn Chowder: with rice, tortilla chips and salsa
6. Bagels and Ramen with carrots and apple slices (easy meal)
7. Vegan pizza: homemade crust, canned spaghetti sauce, topped with faux spinach ricotta, mushroom "meat" balls and vegan parmesan. YUMMY!
8. Thanksgiving: Chickpea cutlets with red wine and shallot gravy, roasted veggies, mashed potatoes, rolls and vegan lime cheesecake
9. Curried Tofu Sticks: They look like fish sticks and you dip them in peanut sauce.
10. Boca Burgers: with fries and gravy
11. Italian Style Homemade "Hamburger Helper": I love Hamburger Helper and didn't think being a vegan, whole food person should stand in my way; so I made a home version from scratch with tofu, tomato paste spices - it's amazing. Also made a vegan Hamburger Helper style stroganoff.
12. Baked Potato and Greens Soup: Tastes very sausage-y for a vegan soup. Delicious!
13. Thai Peanut Pasta:
14. Date Night eat out or sloppy Joes.

Here's the recipe for Thai Peanut Pasta. It's delicious and tastes great with chicken, shrimp, tofu or a combination of meats.

Thai Peanut Pasta

8 oz of udon noodles or linguine
2/3 C creamy peanut butter
2/3 C water (or more if you like it saucy)
4TBS soy sauce
3TBS rice vinegar (we use the one with garlic)
1 tsp chile paste with garlic
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt (divided)

cooking spray

1/2 pound peeled deveined shrimp (Frozen is fine. If used, place in a colander under hot tap water until thawed- about two minutes. Little ones love this job!))
1/2 pound cooked sliced chicken breast


1-2 packages of tofu marinated (we use soy sauce, sesame oil and garlic) and baked or fried

1 red bell pepper
3/4 C chopped seeded cucumber
1/4 sliced green onions (optional)
3TBS chopped roasted peanuts

Lime wedges (optional but delicious)

Cook noodles. Drain, saving a C of cooking water. Set water aside.

While noodles cook, combine peanut butter and next five ingredients in a large serving bowl. Add 1/2 tsp of the salt and stir well.

Heat skillet, spray with cooking spray, toss remaining salt with shrimp and then saute the shrimp and chicken until done (about 6 minutes)

Add shrimp, noodles, and veggies to sauce. Toss well. If it looks dry add some of the reserved cooking water.

Enjoy with a squeeze of lime


grrlpup said...

Thanks for posting this! I have a hard time with meal planning, I guess because I'm not confident I'll cook the food up "on schedule" and fear it will go to waste as we eat cereal all week. A food commitmentphobe, that's me.

In case you have a queue of recipes you're thinking of posting sometime, vegan lime cheesecake and baked potato greens soup definitely pique my interest! :)

Jenna Bayley-Burke said...

I heart peanut pasta.

I'm going to start trying to do two weeks of meals as well...we waste too much time at the grocery each week! I don't mind when it includes a pass through the farmers market, but in the winter I just don't like grocery shopping.

Scrapamum said...

Ok, I think you need to make a vegan cookbook. Your menu sounds fabulous. I've been following your blog for a few months and you need to start sharing all of these yummy recipes!

Joyce said...

I am going to see about doing this recipe.