Monday, December 3, 2007

Menu Planning Monday: Food, Glorious Food Edition

Happy December! Back so soon from my quick time off...because I have come to depnd on Menu Planning Mondays to force me to it for the week!

And a good week I hope it will be, too...the weekend was lovely except that we were all sick so the alluded-to surprise couldn't happen. That was very sad. But the good news was that we were all sick together so we spent lots of time huddled together watching TV...not that this is a great family activity under normal circumstances but with four runny noses and a chilly winter storm outside, it worked for us in a big way this weekend.

We ate out a lot because no one felt like cooking; our big activity was going to the Standard Tap for brunch on Saturday. My husband had been there and loved it, but it was new to me so it counted for my new restaurant for my birthday. We went for brunch because they have live kids' music every first Saturday from 12-3. The brunch menu was awesome; I had an amazing goat cheese and mushroom omelette with a really nice beet salad on the side, plus some of the best home fries I've had in a long long time. The boys split pancakes, and the older one also ate quite a few of Dad's fries from his burger, which was also totally incredibly good. The only bummer--well, two. First, I don't know why I keep living in a fantasy world where my boys like group participation music events. It takes a long time for them to get to that comfort level even in a small class with a teacher who knows their names, let alone in a bar with a bunch of strange kids and their parents. But hey, it got us out. Second, it's in a dodgy area (up and coming, but still a bit touch and go) and someone nicked the registration off my husband's plate. He's totally annoyed not just because now he needs a new one, but because I have kept mine in my glove compartment since I worked in the city. The only two times I've been called on it, I could pull it right out and say where I worked, and the cops completely understood and waved me on without another word. But that has always annoyed my husband, and that he would get caught on it is really just rubbing salt in a wound.

Anyway. Here's a cool find from two college seniors who have their own food blog. I can't imagine trying to be in college and having the time to try to learn to cook (or perfect new techniques) but I'm elated they can pull it off! The cookie recipes look great, and having tried the Starbucks cranberry pastry they refer to in the Cranberry Bliss Bars entry, I'm am very jazzed to get some white chocolate chips and try these!

But, it might have to's a semi-busy week, and I've already done my shopping. We're very meat-heavy this week since I got excited about the first snow and went crazy at the butcher and figured I'd figure it out later. So without further ado, here we go:

Monday: eye roast, tomato, basil, and mozzarella salad, baked sweet potato for me, mashed potatoes for husband. Tomatoes, of course, are thanks to Girlfriend. I can't believe I'm having garden-tomatoes on my birthday. Who says global warming is all bad?!

Tuesday: I am taking these apricot crumbles to a potluck. I'll bet the boys have spaghetti and meatballs.

Wednesday: New recipe: Chicken Marbella, based on the Silver Palate cookbook recipe but adapted, supposedly for appetizers but I also think for small children. Will serve with/over rice, salad on the side. (Note: the addendum wasn't archived on the site, alas. Essentially the same, but with four boneless breasts cut in to bite sized pieces before marinating instead. I loathe cutting raw chicken but otherwise am looking forward to this.)

Thursday: Pork Tenderloin (from City Mouse-Country Mouse's recipe--no apples this time, just the tenderloin recipe) with the pasta with pumpkin sauce on the side. (Guess who has some canned pumpkin left to use! I was going to add it to the heavenly Trader Joe's muffins but this will work too. And the sage smelled great at the store today.)

Friday: Leftovers.

Saturday and Sunday are birthday parties a-go-go so we will let other people feed us for a little while. And in the midst of all this, I'm making lasagnes since I have all the stuff I need for them.

Next week: cookie exchanges. Maybe I'll try some from that blog, though I usually just do 7-layer bars (though usually with 5 layers). Maybe the boys will be up for more helping this year. Ha! Ha! I crack myself up.

And if you got this far, don't forget to wish me a happy birthday today! There's something a little strange about being 39. I just haven't thought at all about what being 40-something will be like. And for people my age, the TV show thirtysomething kindly gave us a template, especially for the Philly suburban dwellers! But 40s? I got nothin'. Well, I have a year to figure it out, apparently! And that is enough for this post. Maybe I do need to go back to posting every day. Ha! Ha! I crack myself up again. 39 is apparently rivaling 14 in the giggle fits. Oy--my husband will leave me if that happens. Enough of that! Off to the kitchen!


Anjali said...

A very, very happy birthday. The 30s are the new 20s, so turning 40 is really just like turning 30.

Or so says the "new math."

RuthWells said...

Happy Birthday! I agree with Anjali -- 40 is the new 30 (ahem).

brandy101 said...

1.) Happy Birthday!

2.) What is the "dodgy" area to which you refer? Northern Liberties?

3.) SO funny re: the sweet potato for you; mashed for hubby - we are the SAME way!!!

4.) tomato/basil/mozzerella salad = Caprese Salad in my book - and is DELICIOUS!

Jennifer said...

Happy, happy birthday! Thank God for the Boomers--we can stay children for many years to come!

Domestic Goddess said...

Happy Birthday!
Once again, I did well last week with menu planning this weekend I'm all, " plan? What's that?" Anyways, sounds good to me! have fun at your potluck!

Ter said...

OOOH! Happy Birthday!

My birthday is tomorrow! :)

I haven't been doing MPM the last week or so just because I can't think that far ahead these days, and it seems that every time I plan something, something else comes up. Bleh! But I think we're having hamburger casserole tomorrow, whatever my husband decides to cook! ;)