This week I thought I’d share what a typical meal plan looks like for us in this Jamaican household in England. By the way, we take turns making the meals that we eat. And as our adult-aged kids are away either at work or university, we only cook for us two. And we try to be as efficient as possible by cooking more than one meal at a time.
We find meal planning to be so beneficial and it’s not just in terms of saving money. And even when we don’t write a physical meal plan list, it is something we talk about, and mostly keep to memory. Our shopping list closely reflects what we plan to cook in the coming days. Because we also film cooking food for YouTube, we make sure to have on hand what we will need. We also always check with the fridge, freezer, cupboards, and pantry before we go shopping.
Breakfasts this week
These are what we had or are going to have for breakfast this week
- Fruits such as pears, oranges, mangoes, and pomegranates. We sometimes force ourselves to have just fruit or two and a hot drink for breakfast. A holiday is always looming, wink wink.
- Jamaican fried dumplings with corned beef or chicken sausages
- Oats porridge with added flaxseeds
Lunch this week
This is our main meal of the day and we choose to have it between 12 and 1 pm. It is almost always a hot meal that is freshly cooked or reheated food from a previous day’s lunch. It is always hearty and we also try to have a salad just before consuming the meal (it is said to speed up the metabolic rate). Nowadays we are experimenting with making the salads more interesting so that we will want to eat it. We are now adding things like pumpkin seeds, cashew nuts and red onions. Choosing a nice low-fat dressing helps too.
So here are the things we have had or are going to have this week.
- Bobotie. It is a dish made with ground beef. It is the national dish of South Africa and I filmed cooking it for a YouTube video which will be out in November. Spoiler alert: we still have half of it left for another day! We will have to endure it because we hate food waste and must cut it down! It was served with spicy rice, string beans, and corn on the cob
- Steamed fish with rice and a salad. This will be for two days and is one of our favourites.
- Soup. This is most definitely our favourite food to have. And it’s not just for Fall/Autumn! We love making a big pot of soup and portioning it out for at least 2 days. Sometimes we even freeze a portion of it for when we feel like having a warming cup of soup. We haven’t quite decided yet if it’s going to be chicken soup or beef soup with vegetables or fish soup. Whatever it is, we have everything ready for it. Oh, pepperpot soup doesn’t sound bad either!
Evening meals this week
As the days are shorter now and all we do is sit around and watch tv after our YouTube live sessions, we try to eat lighter stuff like the following:
- Roasted peanuts
- Cashew nuts (Leisa has been longing for chestnuts but we haven’t been able to source any yet).
- Boiled eggs and frankfurters
- Hot chocolate, decaffeinated coffee, mint tea, lemongrass or ginger tea.
In reality, this week in the evening we’ve had fried dumplings and also sweets! This is never planned but we have our weaknesses. Pray for us.
We hope you enjoy planning your meals to take care of your dietary needs and also to satisfy your cravings because after all, that is half of the reason why we eat food!
What’s been your favourite meal that you’ve had so far this week? Chat with us in the comment section below.