Archive for the ‘weekly menu’ Category

Dinner Menu, Week of March 9th:
(Currently, we have a standing Friday night pizza dinner while Jack plays soccer and on Saturdays we get take-out or go out, so these days will be skipped in the dinner planning.)

Monday: Rotisserie chicken; maccaroni and cheese; arugala salad

Tuesday: Black bean and kale quesadillas

Wednesday: Cheese raviloi with olive oil and parmesan; sauteed zucchini

Thursday: Scrambled eggs with scallions; pancakes; citrus slices 

Sunday: Japanese Noodle Salad with Scallion-Chile Oil

Japanese Noodle Salad with Scallion-Chile Oil


Chile-Scallion Oil

2 scallions, thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 tablespoons crushed red pepper flakes

1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger

½ cup vegetable oil

Noodles and Assembly

10 oz. Japanese udon wheat noodles 

tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce

tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar

2 teaspoons sugar

teaspoons toasted sesame oil

2 cups shredded cooked chicken

2 scallions, thinly sliced

1 large cucumber, halved lengthwise, thinly sliced

radishes, trimmed, thinly sliced


Chile-scallion oil
Cook all ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat, swirling pan occasionally, until scallions and garlic are just golden brown, about 2-3 minutes. Let cool; transfer oil to a jar with lid.
May store oil in refrigerator for several days, which works nice for leftovers.
Noodles and assembly
Cook noodles in a large pot of boiling water according to package directions; drain. Rinse noodles under cold water, then shake off as much water as possible.
Whisk soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, and oil in a medium bowl until sugar dissolves. Add noodles, chicken, and scallions; toss to coat.
Toss with cucumber and radishes and drizzle with chile oil just before serving.
recipe adapted from Bon Appetite

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Dinner Menu, Week of February 9th:
(Currently, we have a standing Friday night pizza dinner while Jack plays soccer and on Saturdays we get take-out or go out, so these days will be skipped in the dinner planning.)

Monday: Garlic and herb fettuccine with sage butter and topped with crispy prosciutto; green garbanzo beans with lentils, tomatoes, and olive oil
Tuesday: Egg scramble with Boursin herb cheese and scallions; biscuits
Wednesday: Pan-seared polenta cakes topped with marinara; sautéed eggplant and zucchini
Thursday: Pulled pork BBQ sandwiches; baked fries; sautéed greens
Sunday: Ginger tofu stir fry with Brussels sprouts, green onions, and mushrooms; roasted broccoli

Truth be told, I don’t have much of a system in place when it comes to stir-frying. I add whatever vegetables we have on hand and tend not to really measure the spices or sauces. I will attempt the recipe here, but know a bit of interpretation is fair game.

Ginger tofu stir fry with Brussels sprouts, green onions, and mushrooms
1 tablespoon olive oil

1 package firm tofu

1 pound Brussels sprouts, shaved or cut into very thin slices

1 package crimini mushrooms, sliced

About 1 inch of fresh ginger, peeled and grated

Low sodium soy sauce

4 green onions, chopped

Sesame oil

Salt and pepper

Heat olive oil in a large skillet or wok over medium high heat. Meanwhile, cut tofu into small pieces and add to skillet. Cook until starting to brown.

Add Brussels sprouts, mushrooms, grated ginger, and a healthy drizzle of soy sauce. Stir fry, turning with spatula every few minutes to prevent sticking and to ensure even cooking.

When the vegetables are tender, add the green onions and a light drizzle of sesame oil.

Salt and pepper to taste.

We usually eat this by itself, but it’s also good and more hearty served over brown rice or barley.

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Happy last week of January, y’all! 2015/01/img_2151.jpg *picture of snowy evergreens at Steven’s Pass

I know people have mixed, and sometimes strong, emotions about the month of January. Some people fall into the camp of having the January blues…post holiday let-down, short days, cold, and snow/rain. In other words, not much excitement to follow the long Halloween/Thanksgiving/Christmas/New Year’s Eve run.
I actually think it’s the lack of excitement that draws me into this month. I love the quiet following all of the festivity. I love the expanse of a clear and open set of 12 new months on the calendar. I love feeling alright about retreating inward, about staying home a little more often. I will admit that I think January might be one of my favorite months. I’m not sure if this is a new feeling or if this feeling has just surfaced with the passage of another trip around the sun. Sometimes age can make you look at things differently.
As we move out of this month and into the next, I hope the feelings of serenity and quiet remain. I hope I can keep finding some time to write and to be reflective. I think this feels especially important to me this year as I sense the change about to descend upon our lives. A change we are thrilled beyond belief to welcome, but a change nonetheless (and one that is sure to bring a little chaos and a little less time for writing and inward reflection).
Wishing you all a peace filled week as we close out January 2015.

Dinner Menu, Week of January 26th:
(Currently, we have a standing Friday night pizza dinner while Jack plays soccer and on Saturdays we get take-out or go out, so these days will be skipped in the dinner planning.)

Monday: Roasted Vegetable Lasagna; simple arugula salad
Tuesday: Veggie burgers; baked fries
Wednesday: Egg and cheese wraps; roasted potatoes with green beans and mushrooms
Thursday: Gnocchi with marinara sauce; roasted Brussels sprouts
Sunday: Cauliflower fried “rice”; edamame 2015/01/img_2179.jpg Cauliflower Fried “Rice”

Admittedly, this dish did not really taste like fried rice, so I would be wrong in claiming that it’s a fair substitution. But it is really quite tasty and feels so light and healthy. You could add whatever vegetables you have on hand, or add an additional protein like tofu or chicken.

1 medium head of cauliflower, cleaned and broken into large florets
large glob of olive oil
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
1 cup diced zucchini, about 3 small zucchini
2 teaspoons finely chopped ginger
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 sliced green onions
2 large handfuls of cleaned and chopped kale
2 large eggs
1 spoonful coconut oil

To make cauliflower “rice”, finely chop the cauliflower florets by hand or in a food processor. You want the cauliflower to look like fairly uniform pieces of couscous or quinoa.

In a large sauté pan, heat olive oil and toasted sesame oil over medium high heat. Add garlic, zucchini, green onions, ginger, and a pinch of salt, and cook until beginning to brown. Next, add kale.

Once kale has wilted a bit, add cauliflower and sauté for another 3 minutes. Meanwhile, scramble eggs in a separate skillet. Once the eggs are cooked, add to the vegetable skillet along with the coconut oil. Sauté another few minutes until all flavors have had a chance to mingle.

Recipe adapted from Goop

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2015/01/img_2104.jpg I hope everyone is enjoying a long weekend. David and I are off until Thursday, which is such a treat and almost a necessary respite from the hustle and bustle (and long commute) of the work week for this tiring Mama. We have been spending our weekend going to soccer, visiting a museum with friends, eating yummy food, making a short movie with figurines, building fires, and watching football. And, we are looking forward to a day of skiing and a date day this week! We are hoping to spend our date day catching an early movie (any suggestions???), having lunch, and then going out for dinner and to the Mates of State concert (one of my Christmas presents!)!

Here’s the dinner menu for the week. I hope it inspires good meals at your tables.

Dinner Menu, Week of January 19th:
(We have a standing Friday night pizza dinner while Jack plays soccer and on Saturdays we get take-out or go out, so these days will be skipped in the dinner planning.)

Monday: Sautéed eggplant, zucchini, and mushrooms in olive oil over linguine; meatless meatballs in marinara sauce
Tuesday: Pinto bean, mushroom, and spinach quesadillas
Wednesday: Crab cakes; arugula, carrot, and radish salad
Thursday: Black-eyed peas with crispy bacon; sweet potatoes
Sunday: Seared Turbot with Lentils, Kale, and Salsa Verde (see recipe below); rice

Seared Turbot with Lentils, Kale, and Salsa Verde
3/4 c uncooked rice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large bunch of kale, cleaned, stems removed, and cut into bite sized pieces
3 3. 5 oz. pieces of turbot filets
salt and pepper
1 cup cooked lentils ( we used a canned lentils for this, but almost always have a package of already cooked, fresh lentils in our refrigerator)
Crumbled feta cheese
salsa verde to serve

Cook rice while everything else is cooking.

Heat a large sauté pan over medium high heat, add 1 tablespoon olive oil, then add cut kale and a pinch of salt. Sauté for just a minute, or until the kale has wilted, then add lentils. Turn down the heat and cook until the lentils are warmed through.

While the lentils are warming, prepare the pan to cook the turbot. Heat a large sauté pan over medium high heat, season the fish with salt and pepper and drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil.

When the pan is hot but not smoking, add the turbot and cook for about 4 minutes on the first side, then flip and cook for 2 to 3 more minutes. Cook time will vary depending on the thickness of your fish—just make sure you get a good sear on the first side, and remove from the pan when it feels firm and bounces back when poked.

Plate rice, then top with lentils and kale, then turbot, sprinkle feta, and drizzle with salsa verde.

Recipe adapted from Goop

Happy Eating!

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2015/01/img_2097.jpg I haven’t posted a weekly menu in over 3 years! I honestly could not believe it when I went searching for my last menu post and I had to keep going further and further back. It’s funny how life can move us off our path without us really even noticing. I created this blog to share recipes, to share my passion for being in the kitchen, and to inspire you to make real food for your table. I have also enjoyed using it as an arena for sharing family moments and travel. It’s my online journal and I love all of you for reading it and indulging me. It makes me particularly happy when I receive an email from one of you commenting on a post or telling me that you have made a recipe that I’ve published. I have absolutely loved hearing from all of you over the years! In addition to the family themed posts (precious newborn days and funny and cute kid moments are in our future, so yeah, there will continue to be family posts…how could I not?!), I’m ready to also get back to this blog’s original purpose…food. No promises on frequency, but here’s to a valiant start with a return of a weekly dinner menu post plus recipe.

Dinner Menu, Week of January 12th:

(We have a standing Friday night pizza dinner while Jack plays soccer and on Saturdays we get take-out or go out, so these days will be skipped in the dinner planning.)
Monday: Black and Ranchero bean and cheese burritos with salsa verde
Tuesday: Cheese ravioli with marinara sauce; roasted broccoli
Wednesday: Mojito salmon; garlic herb linguine; power greens salad
Thursday: Egg, spinach, and cheese wraps; Citrus slices
Sunday: Slow roasted salmon with fennel and citrus (see recipe below); roasted fingerling potatoes; arugula salad
Slow Roasted Salmon with Fennel and Citrus

1 medium fennel bulb, thinly sliced
1 orange, very thinly sliced, seeds removed
1 lemon, very thinly sliced, seeds removed
1 jalapeño, with seeds, thinly sliced
4 sprigs dill
Kosher salt and coarsely ground black pepper
2-lb. skinless salmon fillet
¾ cup olive oil

Preheat oven to 275°. Toss fennel, orange slices, lemon slices, jalapeño, and 4 dill sprigs in a shallow 3-qt. baking dish; season with kosher salt and pepper. Season salmon with kosher salt and place on top of fennel and citrus mixture. Pour oil over.
Roast until salmon is just cooked through (the tip of a knife will slide through easily and flesh will be slightly opaque), about 40 minutes in our oven.
Transfer salmon to a platter, breaking it into large pieces with the spoon as you go. Spoon fennel and citrus mixture with oil from baking dish over the fish; discard dill sprigs. Season with a bit more salt and pepper.

Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit, January 2014

Happy Eating this week!

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Do you see that caption there in the bottom right corner…What to Eat This Week: A 7 Day Menu??? That’s my article!!!…On the front cover of January’s issue of Pregnancy and Newborn!
You may remember back in July when I wrote an online piece for the magazine…well, the menu captured enough interest that they extended the invitation to me for a print piece!
I’m over the moon with how it turned out…it spans 4 pages! They even used some of my photos (see the table runner under the ravioli…that’s mine!).
I love how they incorporated my information on vitamins…the sidebars really catch the eye and provide insight into why I chose the foods I included in the 7 day menu of breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks.
They gave me a lot of room to creatively produce a seasonal menu that I am proud of. I was even able to include some uncomplicated recipes.
For all my readers with child, and for those of you who are just interested, you can read the whole menu here. I hope you, and all the magazine’s readers, find it to be helpful. It makes me smile (and blush, a bit) to think that there are women out there that I might be helping!
Thank you again, Pregnancy and Newborn. And, for any other magazines that might be searching for nutrition writers (oh, I SO wish they were reading my blog!)…Ask me! Choose me! I would love to write more articles this year.

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All You Need is Love


Ever have ONE OF THOSE DAYS? You know what I’m talking about, right? When every single person you encounter seems to look at you the wrong way? You cant seem to pull it all together? The nurse nearly knocks you off the chair when she violently stabs your arm with a flu shot? Your self-imposed to-do list is growing and, well, time is not.

Well, it seems I’ve had one of those weeks. SIX of those weeks, actually. For the past six weeks, David and I have spent our week days darting in and out of each other’s lives. I come home from work, we recap Jack’s day, and then we say goodbye as he leaves for night float. For six weeks, we have seen each other for approximately thirty minutes a day. And, then the weekend comes and we have high hopes that we can make up for all the lost time by somehow forgetting that David has been up all night and, in fact, really needs too sleep…instead it goes by way too fast and we all feel a little more dazed and weary by Sunday evening as David is heading out the door again.


I got in my car the other evening after work, and heard on my favorite radio station, KEXP, All You Need is Love by the Beatles and, it hit me! Love was the answer. It was all I needed, but how can I possibly find it in the thirty minutes of fast-paced fury we have together each day? Im so thankful that this rotation is coming to an end, that my husband will be back in our bed at night, sitting around our table for dinner. Perhaps I can get a grip on all of this self-wallowing I’ve been up to!

I’m taking this week to meet other writing deadlines (I was asked to contribute to The Runcible Spoon’s holiday magazine!) and to get some holiday-related tasks done around here. I will be back with a full menu next week (hopefully) and, for those of you waiting, the lentil burgers are likely to make their appearance!


*our little runner sporting mama’s running shoes. Wonder when he will be hitting the streets with us?!

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Last weekend, the three of us went out for ice cream. This may seem like a very routine affair living in a city with a 23 month old where artisanal ice cream stores are easily found. But, this ice cream outing was anything other than routine….we went out for ice cream and it was ALREADY DARK! I could count on one hand the number of times we have left our house after the sun stopped glowing since moving to Seattle and, for Jack to be with us after sundown, well that is just unheard of!


It was Saturday night…our only night with David at home during this month of night float rotation…and I got the urge for a yummy frozen treat, a sweet pre-dinner appetizer for David and I and a desert for Jack. After we paused to give the idea a second thought, we grabbed our shoes and bounded out the door headed to Molly Moon’s. On our drive over to the Wallingford neighborhood, I knew this outing was significant, marking the first of many evening outings that we will share together. And, it was a bit bittersweet…Jack is growing up. He’s becoming a little boy who can make choices and decisions for himself.

We gathered in a line that spilled out of the door and onto the sidewalk and discussed our flavor choices. We made a lot of friends in line chatting over our sweet boy’s outfit of yellow rain boots, a Florida gator shirt, and cut-off denim and our obvious love of SEC football (David was wearing one of his Auburn tees).


We ordered our selections and then snuggled into a table licking and taking spoonfuls of each other’s…Jack chose the tomato basil sorbet (yes, he really did choose this and he liked it! So did we.), I had a sugar cone filled huckleberry chunk and Theo chocolate, David had strawberry balsamic and stone mint. The flavors were indulgent. Jack tasted his first ice cream cone and he thought it was wonderful. The taste of the sweet cream alone would have been enough to make most people’s night, but instead of the ice cream, my favorite part of the evening was the walk to and from the car that we shared hand in hand. Just the three of us with smiles plastered on our faces taking up the whole width of the sidewalk, happy just being.

See, I am all too aware that little people don’t stay little forever. I know that Jack will one day think going out for ice cream on a Saturday night with his parents is absolutely not fun. And, I know, if we are lucky, that this day will come in several years but also be fleeting (those preteen and teenage years can be such a challenge). So, I am holding on dearly to the memories we are making along the way…the simple ice cream outings where nothing is more important to the three of us at that moment than each other.

*happy October! We are all decked out for the season at our house! How about you?

Weekly menu:
Tuesday: Vegetable Ratatouille

Wednesday: Pumpkin Muffins

Thursday: Sweet Potato and Sausage Soup

Friday: Homemade Rustic Pizzas

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Can you believe it’s the last week of September…where exactly did this month go??? Oh my, oh my… The weather in Seattle has us all confused as I think it’s having a hard time deciding whether it’s time to welcome fall. We’ve had days of sunshine and mid-70 degree weather, yet it’s currently windy, gray, and drizzly with temperatures hovering in the high-60s. I quite like this gray day…it feels cozy and is very suitable for writing. Yet, it makes me wish my fireplace was already filled with pillar candles of all sizes so our living room would have a warm glow in the evenings. Jack decided that Nonna was responsible for picking out our candles, but when their visit with us was cut short, we couldn’t find the time to fit that task in. Hopefully, I will get around to it soon.

About the menu this week… the soup is exceptionally good and the muffins are easy and make a wholesome, yummy breakfast even on the super hectic weekday mornings when I’m required to have breakfast plated and on the table before waking Jack up at 6:50. (Whew!…even that sentence made me a frantic!)
After making these muffins, I’ve decided to try to schedule some dedicated baking time into my week. Nothing beats a homemade baked good…I think they just have a way of making you feel loved and cared for. Baking has never been part of my kitchen habit, yet, I’m hoping that will change. So, the plan is for you to see baked bits of goodness appear on the weekly menus more often than not from here on.

*photos were taken at the first Starbucks located in Pike Place Market (note the old “scandalous” mermaid logo). We took my parents here when they visited. I found it appropriate to offer Jack his first taste of Starbucks while at the original store. The only time of year that I love Starbucks is from September through New Years…I find their holiday drinks decadent and comforting, particularly the gingerbread latte. Here, we are drinking a decaf iced soy pumpkin spice latte…mmmmm!

This week’s menu:
Tuesday: Black bean soft tacos

Wednesday: Tomato Florentine soup with tortellini and kale

Thursday: Banana muffins

Friday: Jet City Pizza review

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Hey there, Fall. How did you get here so soon?


It’s difficult for my mind to process the fact that it’s already mid-September, that we will officially greet Fall this week. While so, so, so much has happened this summer (the BIG cross-country move, settling in, starting residency, finding and then starting a new job, meeting new friends, getting Jack started at his first school…!), it doesn’t feel like people should be packing up their flip-flops and picking out a new pair of boots for the cold days ahead. Yet, promises of apple picking, pumpkin patches, corn mazes, football, trick-or-treating, big pots of homemade soup, and cozy nights tucked under blankets make me excited for my favorite season. We are thrilled with the anticipation of what Fall means in the Northwest…what seasonal things are little family of three will do and love to make them our own Autumn traditions. And, I’m also feeling ready to brave the rain and endless clouds we have heard so much about!

So, I will leave you with this week’s menu, a sort of dance between summer and fall foods (I guess my kitchen is not quite ready to bid farewell to summer), while I go search for a new raincoat, discover new soup recipes, and make a warm lunch of grilled apple and cheese sandwiches for me and my boy. xxo.

Weekly menu:
Tuesday: slow cooked lentils

Wednesday: yogurt sesame dressed tortellini

Thursday: poached egg open-faced BLT sandwiches

Friday: pasta with spinach pesto and clams

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