Monday, February 27, 2017

Five Meals for your Family Table.... Week 8

Oh the Monday after vacation....this might be a long week! Good thing I've got a meal plan ready to go! Now before I get into dinners, I want to share a special kids lunch idea. This week we celebrate Dr Seuss' Birthday and I like to send my kiddos with a fun lunch that day! I use some of his books for food inspiration, but traditionally it's green eggs and ham! I hard boil eggs, peel them and then drop in a bowl filled with water and a few drops of green food coloring. Once they look "green enough" I pull them out and pat dry.
There are loads of ideas on Pinterest, and you can get as fancy as you want. Here are some fun tags you can print out. This was our lunch from last year....
Now onto the weekly dinner plan!
I always try to do a Meatless Monday....either all veggie or with some seafood. I have shared this one before and it is a favorite in our house! You can make it with cauliflower rice or you can also use brown rice. You can grab the recipe here
This is another favorite! My kids most requested meal.....Almond Crusted Chicken! It is just so good! Cook extra chicken tonight to use in an Asian Chicken Salad tomorrow. For the chicken, use 1 lb of boneless chicken breasts and pound each until they are about 1/4" thick. (I also cut each in half lengthwise before I pound, so I have 6 pieces). Set up two large, shallow bowls or pie plates work well too. In one place 3 egg whites & 2 TBSP of water and whisk. In the other place 1 cup almond flour, zest of 1 lemon and 1 TSP salt and 1/2 TSP pepper. Heat a few tablespoons of coconut oil in a pan over medium- high heat. Dip each piece in the egg, then the flour and put in the pan. Cook 2-3 minutes on each side, transfer to a foil lined baking sheet and bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. I top mine with a very simple lemon dijon sauce, that I have shared here before. 
The extra chicken you made last night will be perfect on top of this Asian Chicken  Salad. Top some field greens or spinach with  sliced almonds, mandarin oranges, snap peas and the chicken. I made a simple dressing for this salad. Whisk together 1/2 cup of EVOO, 1/4 cup honey, juice of 1/2 orange, 2 TBSP dijon mustard, and salt & pepper to taste. Use some on your salad and you can store the rest in the refrigerator for another day!
Last week's vacation has me itching for more food from the grill! I do have and indoor grill pan that I use a lot during the winter months to grill. Tonight's dinner is a simple one- Burgers with Sweet Potato Fries or Carrot Fries. I like the Alexia brand sweet potato fries or you could try carrot fries. Just peel and slice carrots into "fry size strips". Place on a baking sheet and drizzle with EVOO and salt & pepper. Bake at 425 for 20-25 minutes flipping halfway through. I  like to jazz up my burgers a bit with some sauteed mushrooms & onions. I always make extra, so  I can top my eggs for breakfast the next morning. I also like to wrap my burger in lettuce-and reserve my carbs for a glass of wine!
The end of this week calls for something easy! One of my favorite go to easy meals is a make your own pizza and salad bar.  Grab some whole wheat or whole grain naan or flatbreads for your crust. Lay out lots of topping options and bake at 425 for about 5-7 minutes. While the pizzas are cooking, build your salads. Be sure to put out veggies in lots of great colors! I really like Mid's pizza sauce & shred my own mozzarella from a block. It melts so much better and doesn't have the caking agent that the pre- shredded cheese has.  My kids love to build their own dinners!
What to prep to make these meals easier....

Chop the veggies for your stir fry & rice your cauliflower.
You can prep you chicken up to the step of baking it. Just lay on a baking sheet, cover with foil and pop in the oven the night you will need it.
Prep the fixing for your pizza and salad bar. 

I will be sharing some pics...ok probably a lot of pics.... from our vacation later this week! Hope to see you then....there's always room for one more at our family table.
Have a great week friends!

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