18 November 2013

Menu planning and an everyday vinaigrette recipe

We have fallen off the menu planning wagon (and by we, I mean me) and desperately need to get back on. So here is my attempt at getting back into it:

Monday - Steaks, potatoes, carrots or broccoli
Tuesday - Ham, mashed potatoes, and salad
Wednesday - Homemade pizza with various toppings (recipe for pizza dough to come)
Thursday - hamburgers or hamburger steak (haven't decided)
Friday - leftovers (family swim night)
Saturday - pork tenderloin
Sunday - something roasted (beef, pork or chicken!)

No chicken on the menu this week as it hasn't been on sale for quite some time out here and we are trying to live by the sales these days. I'm hoping that chicken will fall on sale this coming Thursday. If it does, then our menu plan may change slightly.

I haven't been feeling up to cooking too much lately and relying on some tried and true recipes (that I've already posted) for suppers. I've also been adjusting to having kids in school and running around doing drop offs and pick ups. And I really need to get on top of that because in not too long, there will be another little body to take care of!! So on top of menu planning and sorting out our schedules, I want to start getting some freezer meals sorted so that we have meals ready to go come December.

We have been on a wonderful salad kick at our house for the longest time. I'm not sure if it's the salad that we love or it's the salad dressing that's doing it. Well, I already know that for my hubby, it's the salad dressing. I know this because he will use anything to sop up the leftover dressing from his plate and he has been known to actually tilt his plate and slurp up the rest!!

It's another family recipe from my husband's aunt. And I share it often when I bring salad to a pot luck. It's such a great recipe and very versatile, you can adjust it to your tastes very easily.

Tante H's Everyday Vinaigrette
source: Tante H.

1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tsp - 1 tbsp of dijon mustard (I start off with 1 tsp and then increase depending on my mood)
1/3 cup olive oil or canola oil
lemon juice from between 1 - 1 1/2 lemons
2 -3 tbsp olive juice
chopped fresh parsley, to taste
fresh ground black pepper, to taste

Using a measuring cup, measure out the oil. Add the fresh lemon juice to the oil in the measuring cup and add enough juice so that the total liquid measure reaches 1/2 cup. You can definitely use more or less lemon juice depending on your taste, but that's what works for us. I continue to use my measuring cup as my "bowl" for the dressing until all items have been added. Next, I add the dijon mustard and try to mix it in using a fork. Then I add the rest of the ingredients (olive juice, garlic, parsley and pepper) and pour it into a dressing bottle or mason jar, whichever is closer at hand. I shake it up one last time and put it in the fridge until ready to use. It should last about 5 days.
In our house, I always make a double batch because my hubby likes to use it also as a bread dipper.

Happy cooking!


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