Ok…so it’s Sunday and, as usual, that means that we set the menu for the week today.
As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I know a lot of my friends read this 1) to get good fodder to give Tanner and me a hard time and 2) because they really are interested in what we’re doing–the numbers don’t lie!
Regardless…we’ve had quite a bit of ribbing lately about our love for meatloaf and a couple of jokes that went something like this, “Bubbah! We’re having meatloaf!” (you know who you are :))
But, truth be told…we do love meatloaf and all the talk about it lately has made us want it…crave it even! So it made the menu.
Tonight: Brown Sugar meatloaf Minis with Mashed Potatoes and Peas
That’s right. We had meatloaf for dinner tonight…and it was AWESOME! Now if you’ve read the blog before (I can’t remember if I’ve had meatloaf on the blog before, but I’m certain I probably have) you know that I do the meatloaf in muffin tins so the servings are smaller and they’re easier to reheat and serve again. It works great, but the downfall is that when you put the topping (a brown sugar and ketchup mix) on top of the minis, the fat from the beef and the sugar from the topping kind of congeal on top. So I tried a new approach tonight. I followed this recipe from allrecipes.com, but did it with my own little flair. For the onion, because you all know I hate those, I just used a hand full of the dried onion flakes you get in the spice aisle and instead of saltine cracker crumbs I used basic bread crumbs.
As you can see, the recipe calls to line the prepared (aka sprayed with Pam) pan with pressed brown sugar then to layer that brown sugar with ketchup and then to pat the meat mixture into the pan on top of both of those ingredients into a loaf. I decided to spray each muffin cup with Pam, then press brown sugar into the bottom of those, add about a tablespoon and a half of ketchup and then press the meat mixture into the cups on top of that. It worked out pretty well because the fat rose to the top of the meatloaves, so it could be scraped off before serving and the brown sugar and ketchup mixed together nicely, but needed to be re-ladeled on top of each meatloaf before serving…a small price to pay in my opinion.
For sides, the peas were just canned peas cooked down on the stove and then I did mashed potatoes too (because we, and anyone with any sense, mix peas and mashed potatoes together). To make a good amount of potatoes, we got two large baked potatoes and peeled and quartered them. I boiled them and then whipped them with a little bit of milk, a quarter stick of butter, a hearty pad of 1/3 fat Philadelphia cream cheese and an equal amount of sour cream. I also seasoned with salt and pepper. They were SO good. Thick and buttery and just oozing of awesomeness.
To top it all off, we ate at the table tonight! With all of the people in the house this weekend (Wes, Chris, Leslie, Matt and the Rob, Debi, Silvia and Eddie) the house was a wreck from all the fun and festivities. So after we made the menu and went to the grocery store I spent the afternoon cleaning up while Tanner shopped for birthday presents for me. I had cleaned the table up, so I decided we would eat there. I might try to make that more of a habit for us because it’s easier to eat that way and because then we can talk while we eat instead of distracting ourselves with TV. So, dinner tonight was amazing in all respects and I have a great little lunch for tomorrow. Two little mini meatloaves with mashed potatoes and peas (for a sweet snack to top lunch off, I packed cinnamon applesauce and then also a string cheese and some carrots and dip for a mid-morning and mid-afternoon snack and an oatmeal packet for breakfast).
Monday: BBQ Chicken, Corn on the Cob and Green Beans
No new story here. I keep putting this meal off because, even though it’s one of my favorite things to eat, I’m kind of bored with it. So, it’s still on the menu even though we haven’t eaten the meal yet and have continued to break this meal up and add different things to it to get all the pieces put with other meals. To make it more appetizing (but less healthy) I might cook some Velveeta Shells and Cheese instead of the corn. Not sure though, we’ll see how the week plays out.
Tuesday: Parmesan Sage Pork Chips with Broccoli and Sweet Potatoes and Butternut Squash
Tanner requested these pork chops because he just loves them. They have a little bit of spice and a little bit of salty and always turn out really moist. I’m putting my foot down this week and we’re having broccoli to accompany it. I’ll probably either steam the broccoli and add cheese to the top of it or do a little lemon toss on it so that it’s kind of tangy. The sweet potato/butternut squash recipe sounded really good and was something new, so I went with it. It includes:
- 2 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
- 1 butternut squash (peeled, seeded and cubed)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 cup sugar-free maple flavored syrup
Basically, you serve it all up baked with the spices and syrup and it’s just yummy, sweet and good. So I’m hoping Tanner will like it. Eventually, I want to make him this acorn squash recipe Pop used to do with me sometimes. It was probably not that good for us, but it was so fun to make and eat with him.
Essentially, he’d cut this acorn squash in half and put a big pat of butter in the middle of it with a spoon full of cinnamon, brown sugar, maple syrup, shredded cheese and a little garlic into the acorn bowl and then just bake it until it oozed all through the squash. We’d pull it out of the oven on the cookie sheet and then just sit at the table and spoon it out until we scraped down to the peel. It was such a yummy snack, perfect after coming home from school on a cool fall day. It was messy and yummy and eating it always warmed my heart/tummy.
Wednesday: Ginger Glazed Mahi Mahi with Rice and Zucchini
Because we haven’t had fish in a while, we decided to do a fish and rice dish, but we wanted to do a fish with a saucy glaze because we both like to soak our rice with some sort of sauce. The zucchini side is basically because we needed something green and snap peas are too expensive and salad usually takes advantage of us in that we can’t eat it all before it goes bad. Anyway, the ginger glazed Mahi Mahi looked so good to us, so that’s what we went with.
Thursday: NO MEAL.
Tanner is taking me to Melting Pot for my birthday dinner!
Friday: NO MEAL.
We didn’t plan a meal because we’ll probably go out for a bit for my birthday and hang out with friends, then will eat left overs and get ready for tailgating on Saturday.
Saturday: NO MEAL. MY BIRTHDAY!
We’ll be tailgating for the Florida game on Saturday, so we won’t be cooking a meal at home. Even though it’s an early game, we’ll probably still just grab something on the way home or will have eaten so much during the day that we won’t need a full meal. I’m hoping that we can do a breakfast themed tailgate with biscuits, pancakes, bagels, eggs, bacon and sausage and the like for Saturday because the game starts at 3:30 a.m. Also on the menu would be Mimosas!
Sunday: NO MEAL.
Say what?! Sunday and no meal planned?! That’s right monsters, Tanner and I are going home Sunday afternoon after I work my shift for Families in the Kitchen for Junior League. My mom is going to cook a yummy dinner for me and we’ll get to spend the day with the people I love most in the world! Woo hoo!
So there you have it. Readers, I say again, you can make fun of the meatloaf, but you should be jealous you didn’t have it for dinner tonight because it was the bomb dot com.