Happy weekend, everyone. We have a quiet Saturday around here and let me tell you, I’m so thankful. One more week until Spring Break, and we are taking it one day at a time. The world is an anxious place right now, but to stay calm I’ve tried to focus on what I’m grateful for and remember what’s in my control and what’s not. Sometimes we need to throw up our (washed) hands and call it a day. Having a meal plan this week will at least help ease the load of what to make for dinner. I’ve included some pantry staples, and I’ll give you ideas for what you can freeze for extra dinners down the road.
After a cooking class today, what I really want is dinner out! But I have a feeling my husband is going to lobby for dinner at home. I have some Five Mary’s Farms steaks we can grill with their simple and delicious spice rub. Make a caesar salad or red cabbage salad on the side. I’m planning to throw some sliced yellow squash and red peppers on the grill as well.
Today is the 3rd class in my Basics Series, focusing on pasta and grains. Since I have a bunch of farro for class, I’ll use some up in Instant pot farro risotto. It’s a super nutritious dinner that’s full of protein and greens. My kids don’t love mushrooms, so I plan to chop them very fine or even pulse them in a food processor. Serve with a simple mixed green salad tossed with apple cider vinaigrette. Extra farro risotto can be frozen, you may have to add a little water or chicken stock to break it up when you thaw and reheat.
My shelves are so stocked I need to quarantine myself just so I can use things up. Not really, but I do have a backlog of frozen soups, stocks, meats and sauces that need to be eaten. One of my favorite things to freeze is big batches of sheet pan meatballs that have been baked off, cooled and stashed away in freezer bags. Make these wonton meatballs and add them to a broth-based soup, sesame noodles or steamed rice and roasted broccoli.
¼ ounce dried mushrooms, soaked in hot water for 15-20 minutes
1½ pounds ground pork or dark meat chicken
2 green onions, finely chopped
¼ cup cilantro, minced
1 tablespoon coconut aminos
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon fish sauce (Red Boat brand)
¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
¼ teaspoon sesame oil, toasted or regular
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Squeeze the water out of the soaked mushrooms. Cut off the stems of the mushrooms and mince.
Add the meat, mushrooms, green onions, cilantro, coconut aminos, salt, fish sauce, white pepper, and sesame oil to a large bowl. Using your hands, mix the ingredients together until evenly blended.
Use an ice cream scoop to portion out and roll the meat mixture into roughly 2 ½-inch meatballs. Arrange them on a parchment paper-lined sheet pan.
Bake the meatballs for 20 minutes.
Recipe adapted from Nom Nom Paleo.
By the end of the week, I’m tired of prepping, schlepping and cleaning up. Sheet pan dinners to the rescue. I’m making my simple roasted salmon, but adding an easy teriyaki sauce on top when it bakes. If you’d like, add some broccoli, sweet potato rounds or green beans to the pan and pre-bake them for 20 minutes before adding the salmon. For the teriyaki sauce, in a small bowl combine: 1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari, 3 tablespoons mirin, 1 tablespoon rice vinegar, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard. Whisk to combine and pour over salmon before baking.
If you’re heading to a beach house or mountain house for Spring Break, consider making one of these recipes-that-feed-a-crowd: