Monday, May 24, 2010

Menu Plan Monday 5/24 - 5/30 AND Garden Update

Weeks ago, I shared with you my letter to Carrino's Restaurant. I hadn't heard back from them, so I wrote to them again, telling them that I'd shared my disappointment with you, my readers, and had received comments that others had experienced similar treatment. I finger-wagged them in my second letter, pretty harshly, but calmly. Almost instantly, the manager of my local Carrino's was on the phone with me.

She apologized over and over again, and told me she wanted to make this right. She said she was putting a "Be Our Guest" card in the mail worth $60 for us to come enjoy a meal on the house. I haven't received it yet, but I will let you know when I do, and how my visit goes.

On to menu planning: Last week went well, but I have one complaint: I'm sick of cooking hunks of meat for my husband who's following Atkins as a means to lose weight. Hunks of meat are boring. Hunks of meat hold little appeal for me. So I talked it over with him and he doesn't mind eating things several days in a row. Therefore, I'm going to start batch cooking for his meals. I'm making him strips of steak he can add to salads, meatballs, and more, all in one big cooking batch. Then, his meals are ready and I can focus on creating meals for us girls, heavy on the plants and light on the meat.

Here are some of the things we enjoyed this week:



Chocolate Cake (in a parfait with peanut butter frosting)



And here is a garden update for this week!



This is one of my bell pepper plants. Can anyone tell me why it drops all its leaves but the very top ones and drops baby peppers every time they pop up? What can I do?

















My Serrano peppers are doing well. We just don't know when to pick them. They don't seem to be growing much anymore so I assume they're ready. I'm going to give them until tomorrow to see if they do anymore growing. If not, I'll pick them.









That's Picky Eater picking one of our first ripe cherry tomatoes. It could have done with a couple more days on the vine, but it was ready enough.

She was very excited...and nervous...about trying her first vine-fresh cherry tomato. But she was set on trying the second tomato (her sister got the first one). She's never liked tomatoes, but I encouraged her to try it because backyard fresh is so much different than supermarket purchased.


So, she tried it. And didn't like it. But at least she tried. :)

Here's my menu plan for the week. Please stop back by throughout the week for tasty recipes and photos. And for more menu plan inspiration, hop on over to orgjunkie. Happy cooking!

Breakfasts:
  • Cranberry-Orange Granola with Homemade Yogurt and Honey
  • Vanilla Scones & grapefruit halves
  • Garlic Cheddar Biscuits with Scrambled Egg
  • Breakfast Enchiladas
  • Blueberry Pancakes
  • Rice pudding & grapefruit halves
  • leftover breakfast items
  • eggs all week for husband

Lunches at home and school:
  • egg salad with wheat crackers (on lettuce for husband); carrots with ranch to dip; butterscotch pudding
  • oat burgers on buns with cheese and onion (leftovers for husband)
  • popcorn soup (leftovers for husband)
  • pasta salad with tuna and beans (tuna and beans on lettuce for husband); carrots; a cookie
  • leftovers other days

Dinners:
  • bean & cheese stuffed shells (husband: steak and cabbage); cabbage, and corn
  • taco potatoes (taco salad for husband); oven-roasted broccoli; creamed corn (for kids and me)
  • low-carb meatloaf; lemon pepper green beans; mashed potatoes (for kids & me)
  • meatballs (low-carb); dipping sauce; green beans; rice
  • black-eyed peas, veggies, and bread
  • steak & potato burritos (no potato and no tortilla for husband) with lettuce and vine-ripened tomatoes
  • clean out the fridge night

Snacks and Baking:
  • baked potato wedges
  • homemade toaster pastries
  • focaccia rounds
  • blondies
  • pinwheels
  • wheat crackers
  • flax crackers

8 comments:

Jenn said...

I'm no help at all Michelle...I can't even keep a house plant alive. I use the excuse all the time that I live in the desert so I can't seem to grown anything, but in all reality, my green thumb is pretty black :) Hope you can get it figured out though..I know it's frustrating. The tomatoes looks perfect though! Happy gardening!

Keli said...

your menu looks wonderful as always! I am hoping you share therecipe for the baked potato wedges - i can never seem to get mine quite right. I have to say, yours is one of my favorite blogs! I'm so glad I found you!
Have a great week!

Michelle said...

Jenn: I thought I had a black thumb, too -- but Georgia fixed that. :) It's nice and hot and humid here.

Keli: That is so kind of you to say. I'm flattered and honored and I will try to remember to take pictures and post the potatoes this week. :)

Andrea said...

Your garden is looking great! Serranos are about 4-6 inches long when fully mature. They won't get as fat as a jalapano, they're longer & skinner than a jalapano - hope that helps determine your harvesting time :) I'd say based on pix you have another few weeks to go, but what do I know LOL :)

good to hear you finally heard back from Carrinos. I had begun to give up on them! Fingers crossed that you get the $60 gift card and that they improve.

Menu sounds delicious. I really want those vanilla scones too :)

Judi said...

Hi Michelle,

I love your ideas for snacks. One of the few items we still buy "prepared" is snack foods, and I would love to change that! It's my new goal -- after school is out!

About your peppers -- are the leaves curling? It might be aphids. My favorite garden web forum is gardenweb.com. I found this post with a bunch of ideas that might help.

http://forums.gardenweb.com/forums/load/pepper/msg0614591310637.html

I'm fighting aphids myself (no fruit on ours yet, just flowers). I hope you solve the mystery!

April said...

No help for your garden here either. I can't grow a thing, and I try constantly. *sigh*

Leah said...

I think that if it was just aphids that your tomatoes wouldn't be looking so good because they love tomato plants. The peppers might need some a different fertilizer and more water. Just a thought :)

heather said...

sounds like a tasty week!

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