Monday, December 31, 2012

Eaten on the middle of December

This week I am, still, home with my side of the family. They take turns in snuggling Oath and I found myself with surprisingly free hands. I can write! And just rest on the couch for a while... I love my mom's couch. It's big enough for the five of us (mom, my two sisters, Oath and me) and I have lots of great memories here. I'll cherish it as much as I can for as long as I am here.

But today is Monday, and Monday (usually, in my head) means menu planning. But there's no menu to plan, as my mom does not like it. So, have some photos of what I ate in the last week I properly meal planned. I had intended to publish them somewhere in December, but I forgot, and then came Christmas, and then... You know how life is, it keeps happening!

This was some honey-glazed, cheese filled, bacon wrapped chicken breast that Partner loved and I... well, I expected it'd be better, so I was kind of disappointed. It was great, though. And the sauce went great with the salad!

And this non-photogenic thing is one of my better tasting meals: the fish with caramelized onions. This photo doesn't do it justice!

And last, the super easy and super filling puff-pastry ham and cheese rolls! I love how this one started unfolding while in the oven and looks a bit like it's inviting you to eat it.

Oath's Mom

Sunday, December 23, 2012

No menu plan for Christmas

Not a real one, at least.

I've been having some busy weeks (and still haven't done much Christmas shopping... I fail completely at this. I am thankful Oath is young enough that he won't notice it much this year.) with all the studying and preparing of presentations. Oath has been cranky all week, too (he's got his first tooth! I'd be cranky too.), so everything in the house has been put on hold, so it is a huge mess. It would be after the holidays, anyway (we're going home again to spend the new year with my family), so I don't mind much. I'll survive. We will survive.

And I'll get to start again (again!) when I come back mid-January.

Monday 24
  • Lunch: Pasta & tuna. Fast and easy!
  • Dinner: At my in-law's. I've heard something about sirloin... pity I don't really like meat.
Tuesday 25
  • Lunch: At my in-law's again. Some kind of chicken stew. I'm in for a difficult Christmas food-wise, it seems.
  • Dinner: Sandwiches (probably I'll be cooking just for myself, we'll see)
Wednesday 26
  • Lunch: Green beans with prosciutto.
  • Dinner: Soup
Thursday 27
  • Lunch: Probably eating at the airport, or maybe not eating at all (I know how traveling alone with Oath is, and he does not make it easy!)
  • Dinner: I'll be home! I don't know what will we eat, but mom will cook, and that is always nice.

Linking up at I'm an Organizing Junkie!.

Oath's Mom

Monday, December 10, 2012

Menu plan Monday in the middle of December

Goodness! I managed to forget writing this post before hitting publish, many hours ago. At least I did write this week's menu plan! If you have come here just to find a duplicate of last week's post, I am sorry. My brain died on me, or something.

I wanted to talk about how, now that Oath has started eating fruits, I'll have to start menu planning for three: our menu, on one hand, and Oath's menu. For now it's just introducing one fruit a week (pear, apple, and this week orange) but I'm sure that soon it'll get complex enough that I'll need to plan it to not get overwhelmed. Not this week though:

  • Lunch: Pasta & tuna
  • Dinner: Ham and cheese puff-pastry roll
  • Lunch: Rice "a la cubana"
  • Dinner: Fish with caramelized onions
  • Lunch: Pumpkin creamy soup
  • Dinner: Bacon wrapped chicken breasts
  • Lunch: Fried rice
  • Dinner: Chicken and cheese fingers
  • Lunch: Spaghetti with bacon
  • Dinner: Bread with brewers yeast, sun-dried tomatoes and old cheese.
  • Lunch: Somebody's wedding
  • Dinner: Probably at the wedding still
  • Lunch: Chicken soup
  • Dinner: Sushi

Oath's Mom

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Stuffed aubergines/eggplants

Since I was a kid, I have loved aubergines (or eggplants). The color, the shine, and the thin fried slices my mother did instead of chips some days. Stuffed aubergines were, and still are, one of my favorite dishes.

Now, despite having the family recipe, I did not get them quite right, but I have managed to create a new version: it is not like the original I was trying to replicate, but I love it too (Partner doesn't, and I am afraid he'll ban it from menu planning soon, pity). They can also be frozen before cooking, so you just have to pop them in the oven for a quick meal!

To feed two people, you need:
  • 2 medium aubergines
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 egg
  • Red and green pepper (maybe a quarter of pepper of each? I just cut until it looks roughly as much as the onion)
  • Tomato sauce
  • 250gr grounded meat (pork, beef or mixed. Or whatever tickles your fancy, really)
  • Breadcrumbs
  • Olive oil, salt or beef bouillon, grounded pepper, nutmeg.
(You can adjust quantities depending on your appetite or the size of the aubergines. Keep in mind that they shrink when cooked. If you end up with smaller / less aubergine than you expected, you can bake a potato, hollow it out and use it too.)

So, the recipe, step by step:
  1. Wash the aubergines, cut the top off and cut them in half lengthwise. Hollow them out leaving a half inch wide wall on every side (where you cut the top too. Do not be like me and forget.) and reserve the "stuffing".
  2. Put them on the microwave, covered (with a microwave lid or saran wrap), for 8 minutes on high. You could also bake them or boil them, but I never have.
  3. While they cook, finely chop garlic, the onion and the peppers (or, even better, use a mincer).
  4. Put a tablespoon of oil and the garlic in a pan and heat it up. Then, add the onion and sauté until it softens.
  5. Add the peppers and cook until they soften, too.
  6. Add the meat. Stir frequently.
  7. While the meat is cooking, cut the aubergine you reserved into small dices (or use the mincer again). Add it to the pan when the meat is almost done.
  8. Season with the black pepper, nutmeg and salt (or a bit of beef bouillon powder instead of the salt) and stir.
  9. When it looks like it's done, add two tablespoon of tomato sauce (enough to create a paste, but not too much) and an egg-yolk, and mix well.
  10. Stuff the aubergines with the paste. Put a teaspoon of tomato sauce on top of each and spread. Sprinkle breadcrumbs to cover.
  11. Put in the oven, preheated to 220ºC, for five minutes. Meanwhile, whisk the eggwhite until you get soft peaks.
  12. Put whipped egg on top of aubergines, bake until golden. Serve with tomato sauce.
(here I underestimated how much the aubergines would shrink so I had to do the potato too. It was a bit dryier so if you do, add more tomato sauce to it so moisten it a bit)

I hope that, if you try it, you enjoy them as much as I do!

Oath's Mom

Monday, December 3, 2012

Menu Plan Monday: first week of December

Ah... December. This month has sneaked up on me, leaving me all dumbfounded when I realized November was over. As in *really* over. Somehow, even with all the writing of NaNoWriMo, I hadn't assumed that the month was over yet.

But December is here, a month of buying presents (why didn't I do it before?), being with family, handing in papers, trying to deep clean again so I can start the new year in a clean house... With all that, a menu plan is in order if I want to achieve anything:

  • Lunch: Spaghetti with bacon
  • Dinner: Ham and cheese puff-pastry roll
  • Lunch:  Pumpkin cream
  • Dinner: Fish with caramelized onions
  • Lunch: Fried rice
  • Dinner: Chicken soup
  • Lunch: Fajitas
  • Dinner: Nachos
  • Lunch: Stuffed eggplant/zucchini/potatoes
  • Dinner: Ramen
  • Lunch: Going to in-law's
  • Dinner: Sushi
  • Lunch: Penne with tuna and tomato
  • Dinner: Sausages with mashed potatoes

Oath's Mom
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