Friday, January 9, 2009

The Meal Deal

Planning the meals for the week always takes me an inordinate amount of time – we’re talking hours. So in an effort to simplify things, I have assigned each night of the week and different type of dish – Sunday is slow cooker night (necessary because we come in from church starving and it is nice to have something already ready), Monday is new dish night, Tuesday is Mexican, Wednesday is Italian/Mediterranean, Thursday is Asian, Friday is fish, and Saturday is pizza. This is much simpler because I have several recipes for each category, and this way I can be sure not to fix the same thing every night of the week, or spend too much time racking my brain.

Last night was, of course, Asian, so I fixed stir-fry. Lately everything I fix has started with sautéed onions and garlic in olive oil. I added this to the stir fry, along with diced chicken, mushrooms, fresh minced ginger, a frozen vegetable mix that included edamame (sp?), the noodles, red pepper flakes, and an Asian Sesame dressing. Pretty good, and pretty easy.

I also got a new pan – the lovely red number in the picture. I need a bigger pan to do stir-frys and such so that everything can fit in it. The one I had before was a Teflon deal that got scratched, and since I am doing everything I can not to get cancer or send my kidneys into shut-down mode, out it went. This new one is great, because it has enough volume upwards, but the base is not so big that it is hanging out over the burner. Best of all, it’s a quality pan made with green materials, that only cost $13 at T.J. Maxx. Love that store. So any tips on how you simplify meal-planning? Anyone else have Asian Thursdays, or other standardized plans?

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