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Friday, June 21, 2019

Cheap & Cheerful Suppers For the End of June

"wood" or "woodland" strawberries that I picked for lunch today
They're not as big as domestic strawberries, but more flavorful,
even when slightly underripe-looking. They grow wild on our property
 and are native to the Pacific northwest. Our wet springs favor
good production of these kinds of strawberries.
I'm picking a pint a day from a smallish patch near a wooded area.

Welcome summer!!
We have just this week gotten back to normal schedules and meals. So, here are our Cheap & Cheerful suppers for the week.

egg drop soup made with quinoa, Swiss chard, carrots, onions, seaweed, and eggs
crackers (leftover from reception)

scrambled eggs with garden Swiss chard, garlic, and cheese
fresh bread and butter
carrot sticks

Sunday (Father's Day cookout)
smoked sausages in homemade buns
pasta and broccoli salad (both pasta and broccoli leftover from reception)
asparagus (daughter bought for us)
caramel nutty bars
s'mores for anyone wanting them
orange-lemonade and lilac lemonade
sparkling cider (son and DIL bought for us)

leftover pasta salad, with added cucumber and green pepper
leftover asparagus
rice sauteed with beet greens, radish greens, onions, garlic, and chopped almonds
eggplant baked in layers with mozzarella, Parmesan, tomato sauce, herbs and garlic
wild strawberries
caramel nutty bars

lentil salad -- cooked lentils in a vinaigrette
fry bread
sauteed Swiss chard

I had an egg scrambled with Swiss chard, roasted onions, and mozzarella cheese.
garden strawberries
toasted whole wheat bread
The rest of the family had a pizza which my daughter bought, plus garden strawberries. (I had to go to a meeting, so I ate early.)

sloppy Joe's made with flat cola, ketchup, canned tomatoes, onions, green pepper and spices, served on
commercial buns
tossed salad with garden lettuce and Swiss chard plus cucumber and radishes, dressed in homemade mixture of plain yogurt, mayo, garden herbs, garlic powder, salt, cheese powder popcorn flavoring, vinegar, and oil

My family has rather ordinary tastes. All of us were thrilled to have sloppy Joe's last night, and especially thrilled that it was the version made with flat cola and served on commercial buns. Oh, those little thrills!

We're enjoying quite a bit of produce from the garden right now. I think we've had strawberries each day for the past week and a half. The Swiss chard is nearly done. It's actually begun the process of bolting, but I am picking the leaves off of the very tall stalks, daily, before pulling the old plants up to plant lettuce in that bed.

The lettuce that I planted in April is now doing well. The leafy green lettuce is big enough to pluck individual leaves from every other day, and the Romaine planted in May is growing quickly. I don't buy salad dressings, but tend to just mix something up in the bottom of the bowl before I add the greens. We enjoy both vinaigrettes and creamy dressings. Having plain yogurt on hand is a jump-start for creamy dressings. I mix some plain yogurt with mayo along with herbs and salt, and voila - tasty, creamy dressings made in minutes for just a few cents.

We also now have snow peas to use. I'll be making some sort of Asian dish for tonight's supper, using snow peas and Swiss chard from the garden, along with carrots, onions, garlic from the store and the leftover dipping sauce rom the egg rolls 2 weeks ago -- probably fried rice, as that is such an easy one-dish meal to make.

We have eggs galore, so many of us have had an egg or two with toast this week for breakfast. Lunches have been a combination of leftovers, homemade yogurt, peanut butter or egg salad sandwiches on homemade bread, salads, ramen, or pots of soup that I make in the late afternoon just for lunches.

We've just about finished off all of the desserts and treats from my daughter's reception and Father's Day, so I think I'll be baking this weekend. I've been thinking about trying a drop cookie recipe, using butterscotch chips, chocolate chips, and broken pretzels in the dough, or maybe turtle brownies, consisting of brownies topped with caramel and broken pretzels in place of nuts. I'll post how they turn out.

I am making small steps at getting ahead with the produce by freezing small amounts of strawberries to use in leaner produce months. It's just a tiny step, but my thinking is any movement in a positive direction is a good thing.

What was on your menu this past week? I hope that you had a good week and are anticipating a relaxing weekend!


  1. I had a craving for sloppy Joes last week--sometimes, simple IS the best!

    You will certainly appreciate both the financial savings as well as the reminder of summer when you eat your frozen strawberries.

    1. Hi Kris,
      Yep, I think my family appreciates the simple things. That's a good thing.
      I'm hoping we an use the frozen strawberries for something special in fall or winter. It's been a pretty good year for strawberries in our area, both wild and cultivated. Have a great weekend!

  2. My strawberries are pretty much done. We are now waiting on the raspberries. I have so many peas. Stir fry is a great idea. I will add it to the menu. Kale is overabundant. I am freezing lots for future use. I haven't made sloppy joes in a while. I might add them to the menu too.

    1. Hi Marybeth,
      That kale will be welcome in winter, I'm sure. Our kale is just now ready for general cooking. I had been using it as baby kale in salads. It added a nice texture change to the baby lettuce. We're waiting for the raspberries, here, too. Can't wait! I love raspberries.

  3. Sloppy Joes are on our menu this week as well. All of your meals sound good as usual. I'm especially jealous of your wild strawberries. I grew them for a while with some success before cold killed my plants. I'd love to have access to wild ones but have been buying them for a good price in my area ($1.66 1# carton). Somewhere along the way I either missed (of forgot!) that your son had married! Have a great weekend!

    1. Hi Lynn,
      I think my climate is particularly suited to strawberries. Even though this past winter we had an extended frozen period in February, the plants all survived. And with the wet springs and mild May and June, they grow big. But then, there are fruits that we can't grow well here, because of rain or lack of extended heat. So, every place has its merits. I'm glad that you found a good price on strawberries in your area.

      You didn't miss anything or forget. My son and his wife eloped to Las Vegas a year and a half ago. They want their privacy, so I've avoided posting about them much.

      I hope your weekend was a good one!

  4. We haven't made a lentil salad before. Something to put on our list.

    1. Hi live and learn,
      Most of the time I just make a vinaigrette for cooked lentils, with maybe some diced celery and cooked barley added, but I also have a recipe for a lentil salad in dijon dressing. I'll get that out and type up. It came from a Provincial French cookbook from the library. I found several recipes that intrigued me in that book.
      Anyway, lentil salad is nice for summer as the lentils don't require a soaking period or long cooking time, and the salad can be made the evening before or in the morning, freeing up time on busy days, or when you don't want to heat up the kitchen on a super hot day.


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