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  1. Sunday, June 14, 2020

    Week 679 Weekly Menu

    Whoah. I made everything on last week’s menu! Except the ribs…I forgot to defrost them again! Anyway, not much carry-over, so I have to come up with new ideas for this week. Thank goodness you all share menus every week to provide us all with inspiration!

    Week 679 Weekly Dinner Menu: Monday - Tomato Soup; Tuesday - Chicken Gumbo; Wednesday - Honey Goat Cheese Pizza; Thursday - Leftovers; Friday - Pesto Chicken Salad Sandwiches; Saturday - Takeout; Sunday - RibsMONDAY:

    TUESDAY:

    WEDNESDAY:

    THURSDAY:

    • Leftovers

    FRIDAY:

    SATURDAY:

    • Local Takeout

    SUNDAY:

    • Ribs
    • Green Salad, Potato Salad, Rice

    Please share your weekly meal plan in the comments below! Thank you and have a great week!


  2. Sunday, June 7, 2020

    Week 678 Weekly Menu

    Hello food friends. Another mind-boggling week, but also incredibly inspiring. As always, I am sending love and safety to you all through the ether! Also, join me on Twitter for must-read stories and thoughts from black voices. 

    Week 678 Weekly Dinner Menu: Monday - pasta bolognese; Tuesday - sausage hoagies; Wednesday - pot roast; Thursday - leftovers; Friday - BBQ chicken salad; Saturday - Takeout; Sunday - Ribs

    Okay, time to feed my family…and apologies in advance if you’re looking for meatless meal ideas from me this week. Apparently I’m low on iron? Holy meaty menu! Don’t forget to peruse the menus shared in the comments, too!

    MONDAY:

    TUESDAY:

    WEDNESDAY:

    THURSDAY:

    • Leftovers

    FRIDAY:

    SATURDAY:

    • Local Takeout

    SUNDAY:

    • Ribs (Carry-over from last week because I forgot to take the ribs out of the freezer in time for cooking these, darnit! Now we gotta wait another week!)
    • Green Salad, Potato Salad, Rice

    Please share your menus below! They are truly the biggest help each week, thank you!


  3. Sunday, May 31, 2020

    Week 677 Weekly Menu

    I have a heavy heart. While I sit here planning my menu and shopping list, my thoughts and concerns are elsewhere. I am not going to post about food on social media right now, so if you see this, wonderful. I’m happy you are here. I am sending love to each and every one of you. 

    Week 677 Weekly Dinner Menu: Monday - Chicken Piccata; Tuesday - Enchiladas; Wednesday - Chicken Caesar Wraps; Thursday - Leftovers: Friday & Saturday - Local Takeout; Sunday - Ribs

    MONDAY:

    TUESDAY:

    • Simple Enchiladas

    WEDNESDAY:

    THURSDAY:

    • Leftovers

    FRIDAY:

    • Local Takeout

    SATURDAY:

    • Local Takeout

    SUNDAY:

    • Ribs
    • Green Salad, Potato Salad, Rice

    If you would like to share your menu in the comments below, please do! Thank you and sending all the love I can muster through the ether!


  4. Sunday, May 24, 2020

    Week 676 Weekly Menu

    I’m a little late with my meal planning today because I’ve been busy finishing up a fun art project…an international tour done with chalk on our sidewalk (it’s actually pretty cool)! Visit my main Instagram account for photos and my art Instagram account for a video tour. I’ve put the chalk away and am no ready to get planning!

    Week 676 Weekly Menu: Monday - Memorial Day Cookout; Tuesday - Chicken Piccata; Wednesday - Korean BBQ Beef Bowls; Thursday - Leftovers; Friday - Chicken Caesar Wraps; Saturday - Local Takeout; Sunday - Enchiladas

    MONDAY:

    TUESDAY:

    WEDNESDAY:

    THURSDAY:

    • Leftovers

    FRIDAY:

    SATURDAY:

    • Local Takeout

    SUNDAY:

    • Simple Enchiladas

    Thank you for all the amazing menus last week! Keep it coming! Share your menus in the comments below!


  5. Sunday, May 17, 2020

    Week 675 Weekly Menu

    Hi everyone! Let’s get down to business, shall we?

    Week 675 Weekly Dinner Menu: Monday - Rachel Sandwiches, Tuesday - Tacos; Wednesday - Stir Fry; Thursday - Lasagna Baked Ziti; Friday - Leftovers; Saturday - Local Takeout; Sunday - Grill Night

    MONDAY:

    TUESDAY:

    WEDNESDAY:

    • Stir Fry (using our fresh snow peas from the garden!)

    THURSDAY:

    FRIDAY:

    • Leftovers

    SATURDAY:

    • Takeout Local

    SUNDAY:

    • Grill Night + Salad

    Your turn! Share your weekly meal plan below! Stay safe and eat well!


  6. How to Make Crispy Taco Shells (You’re Welcome)

    Two years ago I finally got my hands on fresh masa and learned how to make fresh masa corn tortillas. I thought at that point I had outdone myself when it came to homemade tacos. Then COVID-19 lockdown happened and I wasn’t hitting the tortilleria every week for fresh masa. Because I only had access to already-cooked corn tortillas, I thought to myself, “Self, what could make these store-bought corn tortillas taste better?” And then myself was like, “Self, fry them.” And that is how I figured out how to make crispy taco shells and, honestly, I think it might even be better than fresh masa corn tortillas…and I do NOT say that lightly.  

    Picture of ground beef tacos inside homemade crispy taco shells

    (I must admit that Jack In the Box tacos also inspired me to make these crispy taco shells at home. I know, Jack the bobble head inspired me in the kitchen. I’m as surprised as you are.)

    Top view of ground beef tacos inside homemade crispy taco shells with hot sauce

    For real, please don’t ever buy crispy taco shells at the store ever again. Buy corn tortillas and fry them. They really truly are the most delicious crispy taco shells you will ever eat. And they are fast to make. And unlike most frying recipes, you don’t use that much oil so clean up is easy, too.

    Step-by-step photos for how to make crispy taco shells

    The photos above show the step-by-step process for how to make crispy taco shells, and the details are explained in the recipe below. Below is a photo of what they look like fresh out of the pan! Enjoy!

    Homemade crispy tacos shells on a plate, two empty two with meat

    How to Make Crispy Taco Shells
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • Corn Tortillas
    • Oil for frying (something with a high smoke-point and neutral flavor: peanut and vegetable, for example; I used avocado oil and it worked great perfect)
    Instructions
    1. I find the tacos are at their most delicious when you add the taco meat to the taco shell immediately after frying. I like to set up my taco shell frying station like so: Stack of corn tortillas, tongs, pot with oil on the stove, large plate lined with paper towels, taco meat. (This recipe for Cora's Ground Beef Taco Meat is amazing, but you could put any kind of meat for tacos in here: steak, chicken, whatever!)
    2. Add oil to a medium-large pot. It doesn't need to be that deep - it should cover the bottom of the pan and then add a bit more, probably about ⅛" - ¼" deep.
    3. Heat oil over medium-high heat for 3-5 minutes. A drop of water in the oil should sizzle.
    4. Using tongs, place one tortilla into the oil and let fry on the first side for 5-10 seconds.
    5. Flip the tortilla. Let it fry on the second side for just a couple seconds, then using your tongs sort of fold the tortilla in half. When I do this, I hold the folded half that is out of the oil up a little so you get kind of a flat bottom to the taco shell, if that makes sense. As it fries it will start to hold its shape on its own.
    6. Once the shell is holding its shape (this happens quickly), flip it over. I kind of push the side of the shell that's in the oil down into the oil so that the inside of the shell is frying, too. Just keep flipping and pressing until the shell starts to brown lightly.
    7. Once shell is done frying, remove form oil, let drip onto the paper towels, then set down on the paper towel-lined plate. Fill immediately with meat.
    8. For each shell, frying time total is only around 30 seconds or so. They fry up quickly!

     

     


  7. Monday, May 11, 2020

    Week 674 Weekly Menu

    Happy day after Mother’s Day. I made the conscious decision to relax and not post a menu yesterday and enjoy my day free of cooking, dishes and meal planning. But now it’s back to business! I have a lot of carry-over’s from last week’s menu because I just plain didn’t follow the menu. 

    Week 674 Weekly Dinner Menu

    MONDAY:

    TUESDAY:

    WEDNESDAY:

    THURSDAY:

    FRIDAY:

    • Takeout Night

    SATURDAY:

    • Leftovers

    SUNDAY:

    • Grill Night + Salad

    You know what to do…share your menu in the comments below! And remember we are looking for all types of menus – simple, fancy, everything! Have a good week!


  8. Sunday, May 3, 2020

    Week 673 Weekly Menu

    I everyone! I’m having some technical difficulties, so I can’t create the image of this week’s menu right now. But I still want to get the menu plan published and out the door so you can all share yours. So, how about a photo of one of the recipes I’ll be cooking instead!

    Backlit side view of gluten-free buffalo chicken drumsticks with celery sticks and blue cheese dressing

    MONDAY:

    • Local Takeout Night

    TUESDAY:

    WEDNESDAY:

    THURSDAY:

    FRIDAY:

    SATURDAY:

    • Leftovers

    SUNDAY:

    • Grill Night + Salad

    You know what to do…share your menu in the comments below! And remember we are looking for all types of menus – simple, fancy, everything! Have a good week!


  9. Wednesday, April 29, 2020

    Pressure Cooker Carnitas Recipe

    One of my most Slow Cooker Carnitas favorite recipes is the recipe I have here on the blog. It’s easy to make, doesn’t have any uncommon ingredients, and is SO DELICIOUS. I mean, honestly, every time I make that recipe I’m surprised at how good the carnitas taste! Since I love the recipe so much, I decided it would be worth figuring out a version for the Instant Pot. And so this pressure cooker carnitas recipe was born!

    Preparing pork shoulder for this pressure cooker carnitas recipe showing the ingredients in the Instant Pot before cooking

    It’s essentially the same recipe but I figured out the right amount of liquid and cooking time for the pressure cooker for you. Also, total cooking time is about 1 hour with the pressure cooker, as opposed to 8 hours in the slow cooker. So, you know, if you forget to prep the carnitas in the morning, throwing it together in the afternoon is totally possible!

    Pork carnitas cooked in a pressure cooker served on a corn tortilla with salsa and cilantro

    I’ve had people ask if the frying step is necessary. No, it’s not. But it makes the carnitas that much better. So, go ahead and choose your own adventure. I think it’s worth the extra step!

    Enjoy this pressure cooker carnitas recipe! I know I do!

    Pressure Cooker Carnitas Recipe
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • 3 pounds boneless pork shoulder
    • Salt (kosher preferred)
    • Black pepper
    • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
    • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
    • 4 cloves fresh garlic, minced or pushed through a garlic press
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 1 onion, cut into quarters
    • 1 jalapeno, seeded and ribs removed, roughly chopped
    • 1 cup of liquid that includes the juice from 1 orange + water to fill to 1 cup total, save orange peels after juicing
    • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
    Instructions
    1. Rinse and dry the pork shoulder. Salt and pepper liberally. Place pork shoulder in a pressure cooker (like an Instant Pot).
    2. Mix together the oregano, cumin, garlic and olive oil. Spread half of the oil mixture on one side of the pork shoulder, flip over and then rub the rest of the oil mixture on the other side of the pork shoulder.
    3. Place the onion, jalapeno, and orange peels in the slow cooker with the meat. I put some of the produce on top and some around the edges.
    4. Pour the water-orange juice mixture over the meat.
    5. Select High Pressure on the pressure cooker and set for 45 minutes. When it has cooked for 45 minutes and it beeps, let the pressure release naturally for 15 minutes, open the vent, then let it sit for 10 more minutes. Confirm the valve has dropped and then carefully remove the lid.
    6. Note: if the meat is not fall-apart tender at this point, put the pressure cooker on for another 20-25 minutes and you should be good to go!
    7. Carefully remove the meat from the pressure cooker and put in a bowl. Pull the meat apart with a fork.
    8. Heat vegetable oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Sprinkle pan liberally with more salt. Evenly layer the carnitas in the pan once the pan is hot and cook just one side until you get a nice crispy edge on the meat touching the pan.
    9. Remove from heat, stir together, do a little taste test and add a bit of salt if needed (probably not needed, but check anyway). Sometimes I pour over some of the juices from the cooker over the meat for extra flavor.
    10. Serve with fresh cilantro, salsa, hot sauce and tortillas. You could also add other items to your taco (rice, beans, tomatoes, lettuce, guac, etc), but Nate and I found that the carnitas were just so good it was better to have a simply-dressed taco.

     


  10. Sunday, April 26, 2020

    Week 672 Weekly Menu

    You guys. I sat down to do my menu THREE HOURS AGO. I decided to write a quick post about my new favorite pectin and ended up going down a very deep freezer jam rabbit hole, writing the new post and updating old ones. My back kind of hurts and now I have to do my grocery shopping tonight instead of this morning, but it was worth it. Click here for my new freezer jam post, that turned out to be a true labor of love! And now finally on to my meal plan for the week!

    Week 672 Weekly Dinner Plan: Monday - Enchiladas; Tuesday - Homemade Pizza; Wednesday - Salmon; Thursday - Cheeseburgers; Friday - Local Takeout; Saturday - Grill Night; Sunday - Buffalo Wings

    Please note that my consistent weekly meal planning is not a sign of bliss…I am 100% sick of my kitchen, but am trying to maintain that sometimes elusive “attitude of gratitude” to get me through the meal-planning-and-cooking quarantine grind. It’s mostly working. 😉

    MONDAY:

    – Enchiladas

    TUESDAY:

    Homemade Pizza

    WEDNESDAY:

    Zesty Grilled Salmon
    – Wild Rice and Salad

    THURSDAY:

    – Homemade Cheeseburgers

    FRIDAY:

    – Local Takeout

    SATURDAY:

    – Grill Night + Salad

    SUNDAY:

    Buffalo Wings
    – Salad and Fries (gonna pick up in the freezer section!)

    You guys were amazing last week, so many menus to inspire me as I planned today. Thank you! Keep the menus coming! Share your weekly (daily? monthly? whateverly!) menu in the comments below!