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Thursday, January 12, 2023

Cheap & Cheerful Suppers for Early January

(pizza and movie night -- we watched Field of Dreams)
scratch pepperoni pizza
gingered fig-applesauce (home canned unripe garden figs blended with applesauce and spice)
cabbage and sprout slaw

bean burritos in homemade flour tortillas
orange wedges

bean and vegetable soup

Dinner sounds like a small meal today. That's because our main meal was a lunch-time winter tea. My daughters helped me put together a menu of scones, various spreads, egg salad sandwiches, tangerines, 2 pots of tea, mixed nuts, cookies, and homemade truffles. At dinner time, we all wanted a simple meal, and soup fit the bill.

scrambled eggs
grilled mushrooms
brown rice (topped with soy sauce and sesame oil)
mashed winter squash
roasted Brussel sprouts

This was the day I went to Costco with my daughter-in-law. You may recall, I bought mushrooms and Brussel sprouts. As you'll see, those packages last for a few meals. I got home with one hour to pull together dinner before one daughter had to leave for rehearsal. Eggs are pretty quick and easy. I pre-cooked the winter squash halves in the microwave before roasting them until done, along with the Brussel sprouts (on a different baking tray). I sautéed the mushrooms with garlic in butter and oil -- very, very tasty.

pot roast, potatoes, and gravy
grilled mushrooms
Brussel sprouts
mashed winter squash

I bought a chuck roast at Fred Meyer the week before. We haven't had pot roast in about 2 years, I think. I made a gravy, sautéed more mushrooms with garlic, and added some potato wedges to the pot in the last 20-30 minutes. The roast was large enough for 4 family meals. I froze half the cooked meat and used the other portion on Wednesday.

leftover beef from roast heated in salsa
corn tortillas
Brussel sprouts
orange wedges

A quick meal, using the leftover cooked meat and some salsa. In place of adding salt and water to the salsa and meat, I used some olive brine leftover from canned black olives, both salty and liquid to thin the salsa a bit.

pumpkin souffle
blackberries and blackberry syrup for topping pancakes

We still have mushrooms and Brussel spouts leftover from Monday's shopping. I'll be making a pizza with some of the mushrooms and serve a side of Brussel sprouts for tonight's dinner.  

I'm still cooking up fresh pumpkins and winter squash for both freezing and use in current meals. One pumpkin, upon checking earlier this week, was beginning to wrinkle and soften. So I cooked a large pot of pumpkin this week, using the skin-on technique for cooking and pureeing. Some of the pumpkin puree went into the freezer and some was used in Thursday's dinner. Lots of repeating ingredients this week.

Those were our main meals this week. What was on your menu?


  1. As usual, your meals all look good. Not sure exactly what we ate this week, but we had leftovers to use up and a Mexican casserole.

    1. Hi Live and Learn,
      Yum, a Mexican casserole sounds tasty!
      Have a great weekend!

  2. Let's see how I do. Monday was turkey stew with Lili's quick-quick bread recipe, Tuesday we had tacos (I had bought iceberg lettuce and tomatoes for a nacho bar to be hosted at our house last Sunday, but we had to cancel the event, so I was looking for ways to use those items), Wednesday we had chili dogs (I pulled hotdogs that I had stocked up on last summer out of the freezer), yesterday we had crockpot lasagna (using up the leftover bread from Monday as garlic bread and eating the rest of the lettuce/tomatoes), and tonight I'm making cheesy chicken chowder (but using turkey from our freezer) and an overnight-rise bread that I baked this morning. I think we have eaten through all the items from Christmas and New Years now. My menus tend to be based on what we need to eat before it spoils. :)

    1. Hi Kris,
      Your nacho bar sounds like it would have been a fun event. I'm sorry it got canceled. But great use of the ingredients.
      We still have some holiday foods in the freezer. I believe we have ham, dinner rolls, and some cookies left. I also have some eggnog that I froze in November that I'll have to coax the family into drinking.
      Isn't that the truth -- I feel like I'm chasing the near-expiry foods constantly, trying to not waste anything. I find that has something to do with abundance.

  3. You had lots of variety, as always!

    I was backpacking with friends down near Austin this past weekend, and didn't get home till Monday evening. I had left ham and beans in the slow cooker for my family on Friday morning when I headed out, and they had (planned) Chinese takeout for my son's 15th b-day on Saturday evening. Sunday, can't remember, and Monday, leftovers.
    Tuesday-roast, mashed potatoes, gravy, and green beans (college kid was leaving Wednesday and says the cafeteria tends to serve lots of chicken--she is excited for beefy meals when she comes home)
    Wednesday-chicken potpie and "pumpkin" pie made from home-canned sweet meat squash cubes. Chicken potpie was an easy meal due to having canned up jars of chicken, chunked potatoes, and mixed veggies in chicken broth a while back. I simply dump it in a pan and thicken before pouring in a freshly-made GF pie crust. Squash pie was easily made in the blender.
    Thursday-salmon patties made from canned salmon, baked sweet potatoes, and sauteed Brussels sprouts
    Friday-chicken and white bean chili in the slow cooker

    Tonight will be homemade pizza.

    1. Hi Cat,
      It sounds like lots of comings and goings in your household. Those can be challenging to meal planning. But it also sounds like you and your family handled it all well.
      I love your advance prep of canning chicken with vegetables in broth for making a quick meal at a later date. That's a real time saver, I'm sure.

      Have a good weekend, Cat!

  4. WE had leftover mashed potatoes, chicken and green beans, pork stir fry, tater tot casserole, taco soup. We then ate out twice in one day for my big number birthday. I made another pork stir fry because the first one was so good. This weekend will be all the leftovers.

    1. Happy birthday, Alice! I hope you had a fabulous day.
      I don't know if this was the plan, but a weekend of meals composed of leftovers sounds like a wonderful, extra birthday treat!

      Have a wonderful rest of your weekend, Alice!


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