Sorry I missed last week’s meal guide! It was a throw-it-together kind of week for meals since I came home late on Tuesday and Blake went to the store. We still had some delicious meals, including Trader Joe’s sweet potato gnocchi in sage butter sauce with chicken sausage, tomatoes, and spinach, and a roast chicken with short-grain brown rice (my fave) and a salad.
Food inspiration this week is coming from our Misfits Market box (get 25% off your first box with this link). It’s been fun getting our box each week and being surprised with what’s inside. It has given us the opportunity to try out new produce and stuff we wouldn’t normally buy, which can be a great way to practice gentle nutrition! Adding more variety to my diet helped me immensely in letting go of food rules and making peace with food. If you have Misfits Market in your area, I would HIGHLY recommend it! We save so much money on organic produce, plus it’s helping reduce food waste. If it doesn’t deliver to your area, do a google search for rescued produce in your area. It’s a great way to save money, reduce food waste, and add some variety to your diet.
With that in mind, let’s jump into what I’m planning to make this week.
SUNDAY: GLAZED SALMON AND BOK CHOY WITH BROWN RICE
We had some salmon in the freezer and got a lot of bok choy in our MM box, so I came up with the idea of an asian-inspired salmon and bok choy dish. Simply searched glazed salmon on Pinterest, and found this recipe. I have also been loving short-grain brown rice, so we had that as well. For the brown rice, I soak it for a couple hours in water and a tablespoon or so of apple cider vinegar. It’s not necessary to soak grains, but doing so can help improve the absorption of nutrients.
MONDAY: GRAIN BOWLS WITH SESAME GINGER SAUCE
I may swap Monday’s and Tuesday’s meals, depending on how I feel and how much time I have. I love a good grain bowl! I rarely follow a recipe and just include a grain, protein, cooked veggie, raw veggie, and sauce. I saw this recipe which inspired me to make grain bowls this week. I’ll probably just use quinoa because that’s what we have on hand, and then roast a romanesco broccoli we got in our MM box, and chop up any raw veggies we have on hand (maybe carrots and cucumbers). I will make the sauce, though – I’m not very comfortable just whipping up a sauce just yet.
TUESDAY: POTATO AND SWISS CHARD FRITTATA AND SALAD
Whenever I have a lot of veggies that need to be used up, I make either soup or a frittata. We received a lot of greens in this week’s MM box, so I’m trying to use them all up before they go bad. I’ll kind of wing the frittata, but will base it off of this recipe only I’ll add diced, partially-cooked potatoes. On the side, we’ll have a salad with veggies we have on hand.
WEDNESDAY: CHICKEN, POTATO, AND COLLARD GREEN SOUP WITH FRESH BREAD
Here’s a tip – whenever you make a whole chicken or chicken on the bones, save the chicken bones in the freezer instead of throwing them out. Then use those bones to make chicken broth. I have a lot of bones that need to be cooked up, so I plan to make a big pot of broth during the day. Then I will sautée chopped onions, garlic, and carrots in a large then add chopped collard greens and diced potatoes (from our MM box). Next I’ll add the broth and boneless, skinless chicken thighs and cook as long as I can (soup gets better the longer it simmers). I don’t have a specific recipe, but will probably loosely base it off a chicken soup recipe in my Cook’s Illustrated Cookbook. I also plan to bake fresh bread this day, so we’ll have some of that with the meal.
THURSDAY: DATE NIGHT!
Thursday is always date night, and I think this week we’re going to try out a new pizza place!
FRIDAY: LENTIL PASTA WITH VEGGIES
I’ll be honest, I usually can come up with about 3-4 meals a week and then I get overwhelmed. So I don’t know exactly what we’ll be having Friday night, but I do have some lentil pasta we could combine with veggies we have leftover. I searched pinterest for a couple ideas, and these recipes seemed doable with what we usually have on hand (here and here), but of course I will add my own flair to them.
SATURDAY: WING IT!
Saturdays are becoming a wing it night! Maybe we’ll get takeout or I’ll try to finish up what we have in the fridge because I hate wasting food.
As you can probably tell, I don’t really work from recipes. Sometimes I find a recipe and get specific ingredients for it, but I like being creative in the kitchen and use ingredients we normally have on hand. It saves me time, energy, and money to do it that way as opposed to getting lots of speciality ingredients. Plus, now that we have out MM box, I have to get creative with what we have, which often times means I can’t follow a specific recipe. But I kind of like the challenge!
What about you? Do you like following a recipe or getting creative in the kitchen?