Happy Monday, menu planners! I hope your week was lovely. Ours was a good one, with lots of fun--more on that below. This is a short week for me in the kitchen; we have good excuses to eat out at the end of the week, which is good, because I really lose steam for the kitchen by then. Our weather, after a glorious summery weekend, is turning chilly again (my poor tomato plant may never get outside) so I'm trotting out a few things before the warmth is here to stay.
Sunday: Sweet-and-Sour Pork, rice
Monday: Chicken Lettuce Wraps, Veggie Shu Mai from Trader Joe's, leftover tacos for the kids. (We didn't make it last week because we went to a baseball game instead.)
Tuesday: Chicken Broccoli Casserole, salad
Wednesday: freezer meal. Probably the South Philly favorites: gnocchi with crab sauce, eggplant parmesan
Thursday: Dining Out for Life. Probably at--wait for it--our pizza place. Sigh. But I do suggest clicking the link to see if your area participates. If so, please join; you go out to eat, your meal is regular price, but the restaurant donates a large portion of their proceeds to HIV/AIDS relief. Win-win. Even if it's just pizza again for me.
Friday: baseball game with the preschool! This is always a fun night and I am looking forward to seeing if my little guy can deal with the fireworks after this time!
Reviews from last week are a little light; I didn't make much new. I did make the crock pot tilapia from the Year of Crockpotting experiment. It was ok. I still don't know if the problem is my crockpot, my timing (I left it in a little long, but still under the outside time recommended), or that I shocked myself by deviating from the recipe by sprinkling with panko crumbs on top, but it was merely ok. Sigh.
However, the grand-slam hit of the week, as covered in many other blogs, was Wednesday Spaghetti. At the last second, I got the updated cellphone number of a babysitter and off I went to a gathering of local bloggers at her house. It was awesome. She lives in a great foodie area, and had hand-made mozzarella braids like the ones I remember from my childhood, four kinds of flavored oils, honey with Italian seasoning for dipping the ricotta salata, some great spaghetti and salad, and a bodacious selection of drinks and desserts brought by guests. Our hostess does this every week for a group of her girlfriends. This week, she graciously asked them to step aside and let our group invade. Despite not knowing a single one of us. ("I checked you out pretty thoroughly online," she assured us.) We all came away inspired to do our own Spaghetti Wednesdays, which is part of the idea, and we all came away having met new people and learned new stuff. She has a good list of who was there. She has a good description of the night. I was enormously impressed that she was able to park a car the size of a small school bus on a street that was not quite two cars wide. I was glad she took notes so I could learn all that she did. We talked Old School. (Go 186th.) We talked appetizers and I got a great new tip. Which you know I'll share later if it works for me. Other way cool women were there too, that alas, I didn't get to hang with this time, but I have my eye out for them next round! All of which to say: it was the best kind of meal, and even if it had been snack crackers in a package and fruit roll-ups, it would have still been the best kind of meal, nourishing in all ways. Many, many thanks to everyone who got the ball rolling, and most especially Lora and Jakezilla, who were consummate hosts for a wonderful meal and even better evening.