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  1. Wednesday, January 31, 2018

    Happy 11th Birthday, Blog! Blended Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies to Celebrate!

    Today is This Week for Dinner‘s 11th birthday! How is that even possible? ELEVEN YEARS. Pretty soon my blog will be a teenager, which means I need to enjoy these last moments before it starts talking back and asking for a phone and stuff.

    Blended Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies from @janemaynard

    I pretty much celebrate every blog birthday with chocolate. Last night I remembered a cookie recipe from my pre-blog days that my mother-in-law Pat gave to me. I decided to pull out my old recipe box, dig through the cards and find it. I made the cookies and everyone in the family loved them. The main difference with this recipe is that you blend the oatmeal before adding it to the dough, giving the cookies the flavor of oatmeal with a different texture than what you’re used to with oatmeal cookies, a texture that we all love.

    Blended Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies from @janemaynard

    And, yes, I am sharing yet another chocolate chip cookie recipe. I know, I know, how many versions can one blog hold? Apparently a lot.

    You may notice from the photos that I used Guittard’s chocolate wafers as opposed to chips. Wafers or chips both work fabulously in this recipe, but I do love the layered effect that the wafers give to the final cookie. However, if you don’t have chocolate wafers on hand, good ol’ fashioned chocolate chips are just as delicious!

    Blended Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies from @janemaynard

    Happy birthday, Blog! And happy baking, everyone!

    Blended Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
    Prep time
    Cook time
    Total time
    Modified from a very old Mrs. Fields' recipe that my mother-in-law shared with me many moons ago. I have altered the recipe in several ways, but the oatmeal trick definitely came from Mrs. Fields!
    Serves: 4 dozen
    • 1 cup salted butter, softened to room temperature
    • 1 cup granulated sugar
    • 1 cup light brown sugar
    • 2 eggs
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
    • 2½ cups rolled oats
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 12-18 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips or wafers (12 ounces is a normal amount; 18 ounces is if you really like chocolate!)
    1. Preheat oven to 375º F.
    2. In a stand mixer or large bowl using a hand blender, beat butter, sugar and brown sugar on medium-high speed for 4-5 minutes.
    3. Add eggs and vanilla. Beat another 1-2 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
    4. In a blender, blend the oats until it resembles a very coarse flour.
    5. Add oats to cookie dough and blend on low until just combined.
    6. Add flour and blend on low until just combined.
    7. Stir in chocolate.
    8. Form dough into balls (approximately 2 tablespoons per ball). Place on ungreased cookie sheet or cookie sheet lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper (I use a Silpat). Press down gently on the dough balls to flatten them a bit. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until bottom edges are a golden brown.
    9. Dough balls may be frozen. Add a few minutes to cooking time if baking from frozen.


  2. Tuesday, January 30, 2018

    2018 New Year’s Resolution: Learn How to Can

    If you’ve been reading my blog for longer than a year, you are probably aware that each year I make a New Year’s resolution that supports my overall goal to Eat Well and Heal the Planet. Food production has a huge impact on the environment and I love finding ways to do our part in the kitchen. Usually my resolution is easy to figure out, but this year I’ve struggled a bit with settling on something. Then, this morning, lightning struck: canning!

    2018 New Years Resolution: Learn How to Can @janemaynard

    I’ve always been scared of canning. First off, I don’t know how to do it and was scared of messing up. Second, I was being lazy about learning. Third, I was being lazy about actually doing it. 😉 But this year I am committing to at least learning how and then going from there!

    Last year Nate started gardening. He learned a lot and is ready to do the whole gardening thing even better this year. Over this past year, as produce was harvested in our backyard, our only options were to freeze the food or eat it, otherwise it went to wast (and we all know how I feel about food waste). While I’m really good at freezing stuff (yeah, I’m totally bragging…I mean, it takes great skill to throw something in a container and toss it into the freezer), for some foods freezing doesn’t work. And for other foods canning is just plain delicious. Also, I store a lot of bread and jam in my freezers, so I am limited on freezer space. Since I had NO CLUE about canning, it was simply not an option. This year, however, is going to be different.

    2018 New Years Resolution: Learn How to Can @janemaynard

    For years I’ve been watching my friend Aimee from the blog Simple Bites can food like crazy from food they grew in their backyard. She is really inspiring and I think those years of gawking at her skills have finally sparked me to give it a try. I’m going to start with Simple Bite’s Canning 101 guide. I’m actually excited, albeit a bit nervous.

    If you are a canner and have any tips, please share them in the comments! And if you are a canning virgin, perhaps consider joining me on the journey. I promise to report on how my canning efforts go!

    Here’s to another year of happy, earth-friendly eating!

  3. Monday, January 29, 2018

    Week 564 Weekly Menu from Kalyn Denny of Kalyn’s Kitchen

    Happy Monday! It’s the start of another week, which means it’s time for another menu. And it’s the start of a new year, which means a lot of us are making that annual attempt to eat a bit healthier. In that spirit I have a special guest menu for you today from Kalyn Denny of Kalyn’s Kitchen!

    Week 564 Weekly Menu: Low-Carb Guest Menu from Kalyn Denny of Kalyn's Kitchen

    Kalyn and I talked about having her do a guest menu months ago but decided to wait until January to publish. Kalyn’s site is about carb-conscious eating and is a great resource for all kinds of special diets, including low-carb, South Beach, low-glycemic and more. We thought January would be the perfect time for her to share some dinner ideas! I met Kalyn nearly a decade ago. She was one of the first food bloggers I connected with in person as I began this journey and she’s been a wonderful support and friend ever since. Coincidentally I took a trip to her hometown last week and we even had the chance to meet for lunch. She’s one smart cookie and I am so happy she’s here on the blog today with a great dinner menu to inspire us!

    – Low-Carb Chicken Stir-Fry Sheet Pan Meal

    – Instant Pot Low-Carb Loaded Cauliflower Soup

    – One-Pan Low-Carb Greek Skillet Chicken

    – Asian Lettuce Cups with Spicy Ground Turkey Filling

    – Easy Baked Pesto Chicken (with rice or cauliflower rice)

    – Dinner Out

    – Low-Carb Ground Beef Stroganoff Casserole with Cauliflower Rice

    Click here or on the image above for a free printable PDF of this week’s dinner menu and ingredients list!

    Thank you, Kalyn, for all the great dinner ideas! As usual, can’t wait to see what everyone has cooking this week! Be sure to share your own dinner plans in the comments!

  4. Monday, January 22, 2018

    Week 563 Weekly Menu

    Happy Monday! Menu time…

    Week 563 Weekly Menu from @janemaynard

    – Homemade Hamburgers
    Crispy Rosemary Roast Potatoes

    – Chicken & Chickpea Tikka Masala
    – Naan and Salad

    Creamy Pesto Fettuccine
    – Salad and Garlic Bread

    – Leftovers

    Roasted Vegetable Egg Scramble
    – Smoothies

    – Eat out night

    Pot Roast
    Mashed Potatoes + Veggie

    Alrighty, you know the drill…share your own menus in the comments! And with that I am off to the store!

  5. Sunday, January 14, 2018

    Week 562 Weekly Menu

    Happy Sunday! Everyone in my family (except little Owen) is still asleep, so I’m just gonna sit down, plan out some meals and hit the store! I just realized I’m going to be out of town most of the week, so I need to plan out meals the kids and Nate can take care of easily.

    Week 562 Weekly Menu from @janemaynard

    Spaghetti and Meatballs

    – Roasted Vegetable Scrambles

    – Hot dogs and brats
    – Salad

    Naan pizzas


    – Eat out

    Chicken Pot Pie

    Your turn! Please share your meal plans in the comments below! It was SO WONDERFUL seeing your lovely names and menus last week! Keep it coming! They were a huge help as I sat down to plan this morning. 🙂

  6. Monday, January 8, 2018

    Week 561 Weekly Menu + A Happy New Year!

    Happy New Year! (Related: How are we already 1 week into January? WHOAH.)

    We just returned from a 2-week trip to New Jersey and New Hampshire. Yes, we were there for the bitter cold. Yes, we got to watch the blizzard in New England from my in-law’s couch in their 1775 farmhouse and it was awesome. Yes, traveling at Christmas was as stressful as I thought it would be. And, yes, it was totally worth it! (Although, it may be another 15 years before we do it again. Sorry, grandparents!)

    Week 561 Weekly Menu from @janemaynard, including Cilantro Sour Cream Enchiladas and More!

    It’s Monday and I actually do have a meal plan for the week. It’s boring but it’s done and I did the grocery shopping, so I’m feeling good about life. I’ve been getting messages about how people miss the weekly menu. So, let’s get this party started, shall we? GO MEAL PLANNING!

    – Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo

    Taco Tuesday

    Rachel Sandwiches

    – Leftovers

    – Ravioli and Caesar Salad

    – Eat out night (or maybe I’ll cook something special as my mom will be visiting!)

    Cilantro Sour Cream Enchiladas

    OKAY, PEOPLE. We want to see your weekly menus! In the spirit of the New Year, please share your meal plan for the week in the comments! Remember, all menus are welcome here at This Week for Dinner. Fancy, simple, vegan, gluten free, whatever! We love all ideas!