You know we love a BBQ, right? Well, this week we’ve been watching the weather reports and trying to decide when we will have a few safe hours to put on a barbecue. The short answer is that it hasn’t yet given us the opportunity! IT might well do, over the weekend, so that the young ones can say they had at least one Barbecue before they go back for the long 7 weeks left before school breaks up for the summer.
Here are some of the things we made as part of our meal planning this week.
Jacket Potato with Quorn mince and cole slaw
Chicken Katsu curry with rice
Egg fried rice
Homemade pasta with cheese sauce (and tomato sauce)
Ackee and Saltfish with fried dumplings
The reasoning behind some of these and how we saved money
The jerk marinade we made is still sitting in the fridge waiting for its moment to shine outside if the weather permits. Luckily it lasts for a good time in a jar in the fridge. I should try freezing it and seeing how well it does.
We also used rice twice this week as it’s easy to use leftover rice to make egg fried rice using bits of leftover veg such as sweetcorn, mushroom and peas. It’s one of those dishes that you can make your own by adding your own twist to it. By using a little soy sauce, you get that Chinese flavour too.
Did you notice that I used the Quorn mince twice this week too? You can always bulk it up with mushrooms, make a batch of it and freeze or refrigerate some for later use. Make sure it is properly cooled down before you refrigerate. This way, you don’t put hot foods in the fridge which can cause other foods to go off.
Do you know the dish Ackee and Saltfish? It is Jamaica’s national dish and we love it. It does take an acquired taste, but let’s just say we acquired the taste as babies. It’s hard to describe the taste. I suppose, because of the colour, some people after tasting it for the first time, say it tastes like scrambled eggs. I don’t really agree. I quite like the slightly salty taste. I would say that you have to try it for yourself and see.
Warning: Ackees can be poisonous if not properly ripened and some people are allergic.
Each half term break we try to teach the kids some new skills and this week was the week to learn how to make fresh pasta.
See how we made ice cream here.
The girls also learnt how to use the pasta machine and also how to make a tomato sauce as well as a white sauce from scratch. They added their own twists such as cheese, sweetcorn, thyme etc. They had fun and these little lessons will stay with them for a long time, I’m sure.
I guess we need to get one of those little things that you can hang the pasta on to air or dry until we are ready to use it.
One great benefit of meal planning is that much less food is wasted. When we have food leftover, it is refrigerated and usually features later in the week for lunch or the odd dinner. Sometimes we have all our meals for the week by shopping from our freezer!
It does help us to stay within our budget and this is our biggest win. We also have fewer takeaways although we do make our own takeaway style meals.
Do you do any form of meal planning? What’s your favourite meal that you’d like us to try out? Do let us know your thoughts in the comment box below.