The task of Menu planning largely falls on my shoulders. Mainly it is because I am the one that writes the grocery list, prepares the meals and more importantly understands the ingredients in foods. So like the dutiful wife and mother that I am, every Thursday (or Friday) plan the menu for the coming week so that the grocery shopping can happen for the week. We try to take the budget into consideration, but to be totally honest the budget is the last thing on my mind when I am planning the menu. The things I think about are:

1. will the kids eat it?

2. is it something that everyone can eat with little/no tweaking or is easily tweakable?

3. if I have to cook it on week night, is it EASY and can be made from start to table in about an hour?

So with these things in mind, I set out – pen, paper and laptop and start searching. I know I *could* print recipes off websites (in all reality it would make this whole blogging things easier I am sure) but instead, I make notes and write the things down that I like. At this point I have 2 notebooks filled with a variety of recipes. It’s not a very efficient method at all. Our week generally starts on Saturday and ends Friday night, because the grocery shopping happens generally on Friday night or sometime Saturday. I am not all that creative in making up my own recipes, so I tend to borrow quite a bit and adjust as I go. There are a few websites that are constant faves and others that I am just learning about now. I will try to mark my planned substitutions in the notes near the link to each recipe, but I also wing it quite a bit.

Saturday: Taco’s (ground beef, taco seasoning, with or without cheese and sour cream depending on who you are) and Mexican Rice 

Sunday: Pineapple Bacon Cheeseburgers (you favorite burger mix – I’ve been favoring ground beef mixed with a few tablespoons of homemade ketchup, topped with bacon (turkey bacon in our case), pineapple and cheese or not depending) Potato Salad (again, nothing fancy – potatoes, a few hard boiled eggs, mayo, mustard, some dill and sweet pickle relish, we tried the recipe for hamburger buns using our new Better Batter flour) and Fruit     

Sunday’s at my house typically involve a LOT cooking and baking. And when I say a lot, I mean A LOT. My to make list for this weekend included: homemade yogurt (whole milk and coconut milk), banana almond muffins, granola bars, graham crackers, chocolate chip cookies, hamburger buns, sandwich bread, salsa, almond “cream cheese”, sweet pickle relish, and potato salad.        

Monday: Hoisin Honey Chicken, Steamed Rice and Broccoli (no recipes here, Hoisin Honey chicken was chicken breast marinated with a mix of GF Hoisin Sauce, a bit of soy, a few tablespoons of honey and the juice of one lime)

Tuesday: Creamy Chicken Taquitos (I’ll use corn tortillas instead of regular, and will likely sub almond cheese for the regular cream cheese and will probably 1/2 the cheese.)

Wednesday: Chilli Cheese Fries and fresh fruit

Thursday: Breakfast for Dinner (likely hashbrowns and pigs in a blanket subbing sausage for hot dogs and a side of fruit)

Friday: is almost always Pizza night at our house. Lately I have been using a recipe for Pao bread for the crust. I double the recipe using only 1/2 of the cheese, omitting the herbs adding in a little garlic powder, basil and oregano. Then I dump it on a cookie sheet, flatten it out some and pre-bake before adding toppings.        

So there you have it. A week of food in our house. Breakfast, lunch and snacks are a variety of things depending on child or adult in question. But lots of that “Sunday to make list” ends up as snacks through out the week. How does it all work out… well I guess you will just have to stay tuned for that answer.