On Friday the kids only had a half day of school, so I ended up taking them out to lunch at Sweet Tomatoes. It’s their very favorite restaurant, and it’s because they have unlimited choices: a giant salad bar, half a dozen kinds of soup, three different foccaccia toppings, pasta, fruit, muffins, and soft serve frozen yogurt for dessert. It used to be a little crazy when they all needed help getting their plates filled–we’d spend the entire meal jumping up from the table–but now that two out of three are self-sufficient, it’s a pleasure.
The very best part: they all began the meal with giant plates of salad. We talked about what items they like best on the salad bar (pasta and chickpeas, crunchy lettuce, blue cheese crumbles, shredded carrots, eggs), and how we could translate those things to their lunch boxes. Maybe they can also begin to assemble their own lunches…
Monday: Cod in Parchment Packets, green beans and yellow squash, barley with carrots
Tuesday: Corn, Scallion and Potato Frittata, green salad
Wednesday: Vietnamese Chicken Sandwich (Banh Mi), fruit salad (swap with Jen)
Thursday: Turkey Burgers and Quinoa salad (from Jen)
Friday: Homemade pizza
Sunday: Hoisin-glazed salmon, new potatoes, broccoli, arugula salad with toasted walnuts and goat cheese
Delicious. The kids aren’t fans of the sweet sauce on the salmon, but Mr. Ten ate a good portion. Leftover salmon made a great salmon salad: flake it with a fork and mix in mayo/plain yogurt, chopped mint, lime juice, pepper.
Monday: Crock-Pot Chicken, Rice and Green Chile Casserole, green salad (from Jen)
Tasty. Only one child turned her nose up, but she has a thing about sauce. The rest of us cleaned our plates.
Tuesday: Skillet Lasagna with Italian Sausage
A weeknight favorite. It’s soupier than baked lasagna, but good.
Wednesday: Silky Tortilla Soup, fruit salad
We loved this recipe. I only used 3 chipotles instead of 4, and it still had a kick but wasn’t too hot for the kids. I also skimped a little on the butter with no ill effects.
Thursday: Turkey Kibbe Kebabs with two sauces (but I plan to make them into meatballs and skip the skewers), pita, salad (swap with Jen)
Confession: I messed up half of these by trying to substitute barley for the bulgur, because that’s what I had in the pantry. As soon as I did it, I realized that they would take much longer to cook until the barley was tender. My solution: I cooked them in tomato sauce (half a bottle of Bloody Mary mix, actually) in the pressure cooker for about 10 minutes. They were good, but a completely different meal. I bought some bulgur and mixed up the rest of the turkey, and these were great. Now that I have a big bag of bulgur in the pantry, I’ll make them again soon!
Friday: Black Bean Quesadillas, guacamole
Black beans seasoned with onion, garlic, cumin, salt and pepper; queso fresco, roasted orange peppers, arugula on corn tortillas. I brushed them with olive oil and baked them, but they would be crispier fried on the griddle.
Loved the meatballs w/ two sauces. Was it mint that gave the meatballs just a hint of something different? These were great in the meal, and a great way for Mama to get a protein boost for a weekday lunch!
The mint was only in the sauce…I think I put cumin, coriander and a little pinch of cinnamon in the meatballs. I’m excited to make them again–the kids really liked them. One other change to the recipe: I soaked the bulgur in boiling water for about 5 minutes before draining and adding to the meat.