Meal plan: 22 January 2012

I talk a lot on this blog about the merits of meal planning, so it makes sense to let you see my weekly meal plans.

I’ve only been planning meals for the last six months or so but it has completely transformed how my family eats and how I shop for food. We’re now eating tastier, more varied meals, we’re eating more seasonally, we’re wasting much less food and our food bills have been slashed.

Each week I’ll publish my meal plan from the previous week including recipes for many of the dishes listed. I’ll also offer notes on what worked as well as what didn’t; my two daughters (six and three) are harsh critics and I’ll pass on their verdicts of any new dishes we’ve tried out.

Highlights

My macaroni cheese with a rosemary and garlic topping

Macaroni cheese on Monday was a big hit. I like to add a little smoked bacon to the Cheddar cheese sauce and I top the dish with sliced tomatoes, breadcrumbs, garlic, rosemary and parmesan. Gorgeous.

I love my husband’s chilli con carne, not simply because I get a night off but because he’s spent years perfecting the recipe and it really is very good, although very hot. (The girls both ate at friends that day.) I’ll get him to write down his recipe one day so I can post it on the blog. On Tuesday we took a batch out of the freezer – he always makes a huge pot and freezes a few tubs – so a really easy meal after our busy days at work.

Lowlights

I had really been looking forward to our breakfast cookies on Sunday morning and felt like a bit of a supermum as I prepared the cookie mixture on Saturday evening. But unfortunately they got a thumbs down all round because they were just too “healthy” and stodgy. I like the concept though, so I’ll need to work on these a little more. The banana smoothies were delicious though.

Monday 16 January
Lunch: ham and cheese rolls
Dinner: macaroni cheese (with bacon and rosemary & garlic topping)

Tuesday 17 January
Lunch: hummus and cucumber rolls
Dinner: chilli con carne F

Wednesday 18 January
Lunch: pasta salad
Dinner (kids): Irish stew F (adults): salad and hummus wraps (with beetroot, carrot and apple salad)

Thursday 19 January
Lunch (kids): ham and tomato rolls (adults): bacon and cream cheese bagels
Dinner (kids): tasty chicken rice F (adults): Thai chicken curry with aubergine

Friday 20 January
Lunch: ham, tomato and sweetcorn muffins
Dinner (kids): fish fingers, chips, peas and sweetcorn (adults): Indian takeaway

Saturday 21 January
Lunch: grilled pork chops, mashed potatoes and vegetables
Dinner: cheese & ham omelette and salad

Sunday 22 January
Breakfast: healthy breakfast cookies and banana smoothies
Lunch: homemade pizzas
Dinner: healthy green soup (made from spinach and curly kale)

F = from freezer

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