When Things Get Blue (Dinner for Two Week 16)

Breakfast: Pancakes or Waffles with Blueberry Sauce Supreme

Lunch: Green salad with Thousand Island or French Salad Dressing or Broccoli Waldorf Salad, pear or watermelon

Dinner: Savory Roast Chicken with rice and Sauteed Mushrooms or Sausage Spaghetti Spirals with salad, sugar snap peas/watercress

Sauteed Mushrooms

Melt 1/4 cup of butter in a skillet. Add 1 lb of sliced fresh mushrooms, 1 Tbsp of lemon juice, and 1 Tbsp of soy sauce. Saute for 6-8 minutes.

Waffles

  1. Preheat waffle iron. Beat 2 eggs in a large bowl with a hand beater until fluffy. Beat in 2 cups of all-purpose flour, 1 3/4 cups of milk, 1/2 cup of vegetable oil, 1 Tbsp of sugar, 4 tsp of baking powder, 1/4 tsp of salt, and 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract.
  2. Spray preheated waffle iron with nonstick cooking spray. Pour mix onto hot waffle iron. Cook until golden brown. Serve hot.

Foolproof Pancakes

  • STEP 1

Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Have a baking sheet or heatproof platter ready to keep cooked pancakes warm in the oven. In a small bowl, whisk together 1 cup of all-purpose flour, 2 Tbsp of sugar, 2 tsp of baking powder, and 1/2 tsp of salt. Set aside.

  • STEP 2

In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 cup of milk, 2 Tbsp of melted unsalted butter (or oil), and 1 egg. Add dry ingredients to milk mixture. Whisk until just moistened. The key is to not overmix. A few small lumps here and there are fine.

  • STEP 3

Heat a large skillet (nonstick or cast-iron) or griddle over medium. Fold a sheet of paper towel in half, and moisten with oil; carefully rub skillet with oiled paper towel.

  • STEP 4

For each pancake, spoon 2 to 3 tablespoons of batter onto skillet, using the back of the spoon to spread batter into a round (you should be able to fit 2 to 3 in a large skillet).

  • STEP 5

Cook 1-2 minutes. Flip carefully with a thin spatula, and cook 1-2 minutes more. Transfer to a baking sheet or platter; cover loosely with aluminum foil, and keep warm in oven. Continue with more oil and remaining batter. (You’ll have 12-15 pancakes.) Serve warm, with desired toppings.

Blueberry Sauce Supreme

Combine 1/2 cup of sugar, 1/4 cup of orange juice concentrate, and 2 Tbsp of cornstarch in a pot. Stir until smooth. Add 3 cups of fresh or frozen blueberries and bring to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.

Serve on top of pancakes, waffles, ice cream, granola/yogurt, muffins, pies, cheesecake, desserts…

Thousand Island Dressing

Combine 2 cups of mayonnaise, 1/4 cup of chili sauce, and 1/4 cup of pickle relish in a bowl. Store in the refrigerator.

Salad Suggestion: Lettuce, leeks, okra, persimmons, pineapple, and roasted pumpkin seeds. Leftover nuts, seeds, cheese, dried fruit

Salad Suggestion: Lettuce, spinach, snow peas, apple, tangerine, and figs. Leftover nuts, seeds, cheese, dried fruit.

Broccoli Waldorf Salad

Combine 6 cups of broccoli florets, a large chopped red apple, 1/2 cup of raisins, and 1/4 cup of chopped pecans in a large serving bowl. Drizzle with 1/2 cup of coleslaw dressing. Toss to coat. Refrigerate leftovers.

Savory Roast Chicken

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place a broiler/fryer chicken breast side up on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Combine 2 Tbsp of melted butter, 3 Tbsp of lemon juice, and either 1 Tbsp of minced fresh savory or 1 tsp of dried savory. Brush over chicken. Bake, uncovered, for 1 1/2 hours, basting occasionally with the pan dripping.

Sausage Spaghetti Spirals

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook 1 lb bulk Italian sausage and a chopped green pepper over medium heat in a skillet. Drain. Stir in 5 cup of cooked spiral pasta and a jar of meatless spaghetti sauce. Mix well.

Transfer to a greased baking dish. Cover and bake for 25 minutes. Uncover. Sprinkle with 1 1/2 cups of mozzarella cheese. Bake 5-10 minutes longer.

SHOPPING LIST:

Mozzarella cheese (6 oz)

Green pepper

LOTS of lettuce (like 3 bundles or 3 mixed boxes), plus a bag/box of spinach

Leeks

Okra

Broccoli florets (enough for 6 cups)

Snow peas and sugar snap peas

1 lb mushrooms

Watercress

6 pears

Watermelon

2 persimmons

Pineapple

2 red apples

Tangerine

2-3 figs

Blueberries (3 cups worth – fresh or frozen)

1 lb bulk Italian sausage

Broiler/fryer chicken (2.5 – 3 lbs)

Frozen peas

Orange juice concentrate

Jar of meatless spaghetti sauce (28 oz)

Coleslaw dressing

Chili sauce

Spiral pasta

Old-fashioned rolled oats

Wheat germ

Raw pumpkin seeds

Raw pistachios

Fresh or dried savory

[Also needed: butter, lemon juice, pecans, raisins, mayonnaise, relish, sugar, cornstarch, soy sauce]

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No-Fuss Crust Pizza (Dinner for Two Week 10)

Breakfast: Mocha, Doughnut and Raspberries

Lunch: Chicken salad or sandwich or croissant, Pomegranate, Apple snack

Dinner: Pizza, Avocado or Broccoflower, Pineapple cooler

Dessert: Cake

Apple Snack                               Low Cal!

Peel, core, and slice 4 Golden Delicious apples into rounds. Arrange apples in two rows in an ungreased glass baking dish. Pour 1/2 cup of apple juice over apples. Sprinkle with 1/4 tsp of cinnamon and 1 Tbsp of grated lemon peel. Cover and microwave for 7 minutes, turning after 3 1/2 minutes.

Garbanzo Bean Chocolate Cake                                Gluten-Free!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 cups of semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 can of garbanzo beans (19 oz)
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup of white sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of baking powder
  • 1 Tbsp of confectioners sugar for dusting

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan.
  2. Place the chocolate chips in a glass bowl. Cook in the microwave for about 2 minutes, stirring every 20 seconds after the first minute.
  3. Drain the can of garbanzo beans. Combine beans and eggs in the bowl of a food processor. Process until smooth. Add the sugar and the baking powder, and pulse to blend. Pour in the melted chocolate and blend until smooth, scraping down the corner to make sure chocolate is completely mixed. Transfer the batter to the prepared cake pan.
  4. Bake for 40 minutes. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10-15 minutes before inverting onto a serving platter. Dust with confectioners’ sugar just before serving.

 

Apple Cider Doughnuts                              Vegan variation in brackets

INGREDIENTS
  • butter, oil, or non-stick spray
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour (spelt flour works too)
  • ¼ cup and 2 Tbsp sugar (raw sugar works great too)
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ cup apple cider
  • 1 egg (flaxseed egg can be substituted for vegans)
  • 2 Tbsp milk (or sub vegan milk substitute)
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil
  • ¼ tsp vanilla
  • ¼ tsp white vinegar (can be omitted for a denser, more cake-like doughnut. I prefer the fluffier version though)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Rub a doughnut pan with butter (or brush with oil or use non-stick spray).
  2. Add flour, ¼ cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, and salt in a bowl. Whisk to combine.
  3. Whisk together apple cider and egg in another bowl. Add milk, canola oil, vanilla extract, and white vinegar and whisk to combine.
  4. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and gently mix until just combined (don’t overmix!).
  5. Evenly distribute in doughnut pan. Bake for 8-10 minutes.
  6. Whisk together 2 tablespoons sugar and ½ teaspoon cinnamon in a small bowl. When doughnuts are safe to touch, but while they’re still warm, dip each side into the cinnamon-sugar mixture, pressing and twisting to get good coverage. Serve and enjoy!

 

Chicken Salad                               Two variations in one recipe

Cook and shred 8 chicken breasts. Hard boil 2 eggs. Peel and mash the eggs with a fork in a bowl. Add the shredded chicken, 1 1/2 cups of mayonnaise, and 2 Tbsp of sweet pickle relish.  Salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until serving.

Salad: Place 1 cup of chicken salad on top of a bed of lettuce. Sprinkle with 2 Tbsp of chopped pecans.

Sandwich: Place 1 cup of chicken salad on a slice of bread and top with another slice. Salt and pepper. Sprinkle with 2 Tbsp of chopped pecans.

Croissants: Spice things up by making a sandwich out of a croissant and 1 cup of chicken salad.

No-Fuss Crust Pizza                            

Recipe yields one pizza, but shopping list included enough ingredients for two. Feel free to experiment with toppings!

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cook 1 lb of ground beef over medium heat in a skillet. Drain. Stir in 1 can of pizza sauce. Dismantle 2 tubes of buttermilk biscuits. Quarter the biscuits. Place in a greased baking dish.

Bake, uncovered, for 20-25 minutes. Chop and diced a tomato and a green pepper, slice 3 mushrooms, and drain a can of black olives. Sprinkle vegetables on top of pan along with 1 1/2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese and 1 cup of cheddar cheese. Bake 5-10 minutes longer. Let stand for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Pineapple Cooler

Combine 1 cup of unsweetened pineapple juice, 2 Tbsp of lemon juice, and 1 can of lemon-lime soda in a pitcher. Stir well. Serve over ice.

Morning Mocha

Brew 1 cup of coffee. Combine the coffee, 2 Tbsp of half-and-half cream, 1 Tbsp of chocolate syrup, and 1 tsp of sugar in a pot. Cook and stir over medium heat until sugar is dissolved and mixture is heated through. Ladle into a large mug. Stir with a cinnamon stick. Give it a quick taste and add 1/8 – 1/4 tsp more sugar if you like it sweeter. Top with whipped cream.

SHOPPING LIST:

Mozzarella cheese (12 oz)

Cheddar cheese (8 oz)

Whipped cream in a can

Eggs

4 tubes of refrigerated buttermilk biscuits (12 oz each)

Bread

Croissants

Lettuce or mixed greens

Green pepper

3 mushrooms

Tomato

3 avocados

Broccoflower

14 pomegranates

4 Golden Delicious apples

Raspberries

Lemon

3 lbs ground beef

12 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves

Pineapple juice

2 cans of pizza sauce (15 oz each)

Can of black olives

Can of garbanzo beans (19 oz)

Cinnamon sticks

Chocolate syrup

12 oz can of lemon-lime soda (Sprite or 7Up)

Apple cider

Apple juice

Lemon juice

Icing sugar

[Also needed: sugar, coffee, half-and-half cream, mayonnaise, sweet pickle relish, pecans, baking powder, cinnamon]

Don’t be Corn-fused (Dinner for Two Week 9)

Lunch: Chicken salad, Cherry salad, Cheerio’ square, Amazeing mix, Grapefruit

Dinner: Breaded ranch chicken or Tuna delight, Rice or Noodles, Arugula or Asparagus

After Thanksgiving Salad 

Note: It’s called After Thanksgiving Salad because the original recipe calls for leftover turkey. If you have some, or would prefer to buy turkey breasts instead, go for it, but since chicken is an easy, cheap substitute, I used it instead.

Cook and shred 4 chicken breasts. Meanwhile, hard boil an egg. When finished, peel and mash the egg with a fork in a bowl. Add shredded chicken, 3/4 cup of mayonnaise, and 1 Tbsp of sweet pickle relish. Cover and refrigerate until serving. Stir in 1/2 cup of chopped pecans just before serving.

Frozen Cherry Salad

Combine a softened package of cream cheese and a thawed carton of whipped topping in a mixing bowl. Stir in a can of cherry pie filling. Drain 2 cans of mandarin oranges. Set aside 1/4 cup for garnish. Fold remaining oranges into cream cheese mixture. Transfer to a loaf pan. Cover and freeze overnight.

Remove from the freezer 15 minutes before cutting. Garnish with reserved mandarin oranges, maraschino cherries, and orange wedges.

Tuna Delight

Combine 1 3/4 cups of thawed mixed vegetables, a can of drained and flaked tuna, and a can of cream of chicken or celery soup in a large pot. Cook and stir until heated through. Serve over rice or noodles.

Breaded Ranch Chicken

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine 3/4 cup of crushed Cornflakes, 3/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese, and an envelope of ranch salad dressing mix in a shallow bowl. Dip 8 chicken breasts in 1/2 cup of melted butter, then roll in cornflake mixture to coat.

Place in a greased baking dish. Bake, uncovered, for 45 minutes.

A-maze-ing Mix

Combine 3 bags of popped popcorn, a box of Corn Pops, and a package of corn chips in several large bowls. Melt 2 packages of vanilla or white chocolate chips in a pot over medium-low heat. Stir until smooth. Pour over popcorn mixture and toss to coat. Spread in two pans. Cool. Store in airtight containers.

Cheerio’ Squares

Place 3 Tbsp of butter and a package of mini marshmallows in a large glass bowl. Microwave, uncovered, for 2 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup of peanut butter until blended. Add 5 cups of Cheerios and 1 cup of plain M&Ms. Mix well. Spoon into a greased pan. Press down gently. Cool slightly before cutting.

SHOPPING LIST:

Cream cheese

Parmesan cheese

Eggs

Orange

Arugula

Asparagus

14 grapefruits

12 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves

Frozen whipped topping

Frozen mixed vegetables

Can of tuna (12 oz)

Can of condensed cream of chicken or celery soup

Can of cherry pie filling (21 oz)

2 cans of mandarin oranges

Jar of maraschino cherries

Sweet pickle relish

Peanut butter

Pkg of mini marshmallows (10.5 oz)

2 pkgs of vanilla or white chips (10-12 oz each)

Ranch salad dressing mix

Crushed cornflakes

Cheerios

Corn pops

Popcorn

Corn chips

Pecans

Rice

Noodles

Baking soda

Canola oil

[Also needed: butter, M&Ms, mayonnaise]

Week 33

Shopping List:

Cream cheese

1/4 lb of sliced Genoa salami

7 slices of deli ham

Okra pickles or dill pickle spears

Envelope of Italian salad dressing mix

Crushed stuffing mix

4 cod fillets (6 oz each)

Lettuce

Ginger root

Jerusalem artichoke

Jicama

2 cans of cream of chicken soup

Biscuit/baking mix

Kohlrabi

5 grapefruits

[Also needed: horseradish, vegetable oil, relish. Buy a 2L of milk this week]

 

Lunch: Soup, ham pinwheels, and 1/2 a grapefruit

Dinner: Cod, rice, kohlrabi, and a tossed salad with lettuce, jicama and Jerusalem artichoke and ginger dressing

 

Chicken Dumpling Soup

Combine 2 cans of condensed cream of chicken soup and 2 2/3 cups of milk in a pot. Bring to boil over medium heat. Reduce heat. Combine 1 2/3 cups of biscuit/baking mix with 2/3 cup of milk until just blended in a bowl.

With a rounded tablespoon, drop batter onto simmering soup. Cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Cover and simmer 10-12 minutes. Do not lift lid while simmering.

[Note: I would actually divide recipe in half or in quarters, if you can, as I discovered that the dumplings do not reheat well at all]

 

Crumb-Coated Cod

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Combine 2 Tbsp of vegetable oil, 2 Tbsp of water, and an envelope of Italian salad dressing mix in a shallow bowl. Place 2 cups of crushed stuffing mix in another bowl. Dip 4 6 oz cold fillets in salad dressing mixture and then in stuffing.

Place on a greased baking sheet. Bake for 15-20 minutes.

 

Simple Ginger Salad Dressing

1 Tbsp of finely chopped ginger, 1 tsp of garlic, 2-3 tsp of parsley, 1 Tbsp lemon juice, 2 Tbsp honey, 2 Tbsp of chili sauce, and 6 Tbsp of olive oil. Blend ingredients in food processor or just put in a mason jar and shake.

 

Ham Pickle Pinwheels

Cut an 8 oz package of cream cheese. Place cream cheese, 1/4 lb of sliced Genoa salami, and 1 Tbsp of horseradish in a blender or food processor. Cover and process. Spread over 7 deli ham slices.

Remove stems and ends of 14-21 okra pickles or dill pickle spears (# depends on length). Place 1-3 pickles down the center of each ham slice. Roll up tightly and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Cut into 1 inch slices.

 

 

Week 13

Shopping List:

Saltine crackers (like the ones you put in soup)

Process American cheese slices (like Kraft singles)

Ketchup

Hot dogs

4 chicken breasts

Slivered almonds

Can of cream-style corn

Can of cream of potato soup

Can of minced clams

Bacon

3 endives

Cherries

Raisins

Maple sugar

Toaster pastry (Cuz, what the heck, treat yourself)

[Plus mustard and relish. Buy a half-liter of half-and-half cream this week. ]

 

Breakfast: Toaster pastry

Lunch: Soup, crackers, and cherries

Dinner: Chicken, rice, and endives

 

Hot Diggety Dogs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place 20 saltine crackers on a lightly greased baking sheet. Top with 5 quartered slices of process American cheese and ketchup, mustard, and/or relish. Cut two hot dogs each into 10 slices. Place one slice on each cracker. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

 

Corny Clam Chowder

Combine a can of cream-style corn, a can of cream of potato soup, and 1 1/2 cups of half-and-half cream in a pot. Heat through. Stir in a can of drained minced clams. Heat through. Garnish with 6 strip of cooked and crumble bacon.

 

Almond Chicken

Cook 4 chicken breasts in 2 Tbsp of butter in a skillet, about 20 minutes. Transfer to serving plate and keep warm. Add 1/3 cup of slivered almonds and 3 Tbsp of butter to the skillet. Cook and stir just until almonds are lightly browned. Stir in 3 Tbsp of lemon juice. Heat through and then spoon over chicken.

 

Oatmeal Suggestions:

Try these combinations with your homemade instant oatmeal base…

– Dried fruit, nuts, and brown sugar (I like dried apples and almonds best)

– Raisins, cinnamon, and brown sugar

– Maple sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon

Week 11 – Bonus Breakfast Idea!

Shopping List:

2 pkgs of cream cheese

Italian salad dressing mix

4 pita breads

2 cucumbers

Lemon-pepper seasoning

Bread (need at least 18 slices so may have to get two loaves)

Eggs

Small container of small-curd cottage cheese

Dill pickle relish

Can of salmon

Lettuce

Celery

Chinese cabbage

Peaches

Quick cooking oats

[Buy a half litre of milk this week. Maple syrup is also needed.]

 

Breakfast: French Toast Bake!

Lunch: Sandwich, a peach, and a glass of chocolate milk

Dinner: Cucumber pita wedges, celery, Chinese cabbage and lettuce salad

 

Cucumber Pita Wedges

Beat a package of softened cream cheese and 2 Tbsp of Italian salad dressing mix in a mixing bowl until combined. Split 4 whole pita breads in half, forming 8 circles total. Spread cream cheese mixture over pita circles. Cut each into 6 wedges. Top with peeled and sliced cucumbers. Sprinkle with lemon-pepper seasoning.

 

Maple French Toast Bake                     (Must be prepared at least 9 and a half hours prior to consuming)

Cut 12 bread slices into cubes. Arrange half in a greased shallow baking dish. Top with 1 package of cubed cream cheese and remaining bread cubes. Whisk 8 eggs, 1 cup of milk, and 1/2 cup of maple syrup in a bowl and pour over bread. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours. Remove from fridge 30 minutes before baking. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 20-25 minutes longer. Serve with additional maple syrup.

 

Triple Decker Salmon Club

Combine 3/4 cup of cottage cheese and 1/4 cup of dill pickle relish in a bowl. Combine can of salmon (drained with bones and skin removed) with 1 chopped celery rib in another bowl.

Toast 3 pieces of bread for each sandwich. Top one piece of toast with a leaf of lettuce and half the cottage cheese mixture. Top with a second piece of toast. Spread with half the salmon mixture. Top with a third piece of toast. Eat right away. Don’t make the second sandwich until you are ready to eat it.

 

Homemade Instant Oatmeal

Toast 9 cups (or whatever you have leftover) of old-fashioned oats in the oven at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, put 3 cups of quick oats in the blender and pulse until coarsely ground. Stir together with 2 tsp of salt in a large bowl. Divy it up into small Ziplock bags for single serving-sized breakfast on the go. You can add nuts, dried fruit, whatever you have to the baggies to mix it up.