Sunday, November 25, 2007

Menu Plan Monday
November 26, 2007

Another week, another menu plan. This week is shaping up to be hectic and somewhat unpredictable. I may not stick to my proposed menu, but it's always good to have a plan.

To be honest, most weeks I stray from my meal plan a bit. Last week we ate tacos on both Tuesday and Wednesday, I made hamburger soup on Thursday instead, and I substituted spinach salad for coleslaw on Friday. Having a flexible plan is a real asset. Sometimes I adapt the meals when our schedule changes or to use up ingredients in the fridge.

Tomorrow I must make a hefty trip to the grocery store. My menu plan will certainly make that task a bit easier!

If you would like to browse other interesting meal plans, check out the Menu Plan Monday Mr. Linky hosted by Org Junkie.

Here is my proposed menu plan for the upcoming week:

Monday: Easy ravioli bake, spinach salad
Tuesday: Encore performance.
Wednesday: Chicken mystery casserole, brown rice, broccoli slaw
Thursday: U.S. Senate bean soup, homemade bread, green salad
Friday: Leftovers.

I am fairly certain we will be away next weekend, so I have decided not to include meal plans for Saturday and Sunday.

I plan to make a double batch of the chicken casserole and bean soup. The chicken casserole is a new recipe. I intend to adapt it and experiment with a low fat version. If the casserole turns out well I will post the recipe next week.

U.S. Senate Bean Soup
(from Saveur magazine)

Not even the Historical Office of the Senate can say for sure who ordained that bean soup should appear every day on the menus of the Senate's restaurants. We do know that the custom arose early in the last century and is still observed today.

1 lb. dried navy beans
1 meaty smoked ham hock
1 tbsp. butter
1 small yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Rinse beans in a colander under cold running water. Put beans, ham hock, and 8 cups cold water into a medium pot. Cover pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Uncover pot, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until bean skins are tender and interiors are soft, about 1 hour.

2. Meanwhile, melt butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until soft and just beginning to brown, 3-5 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and set aside.

3. When beans are cooked, reduce heat to low and stir in onions. Retrieve ham hock from pot and set aside to let cool until cool enough to handle. Remove and discard skin, bone, and excess fat, dice meat, and add to soup. Mash some of the beans against the inside of the pot with the back of a spoon. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 4-6.


Natalie said...

That bean soup sounds great! :)

Sharon said...

We've been straying away from menu, too! Some weeks we've been successful 100%, but not lately. lol
Your menu looks great. Have a nice Monday!

Amy said...

Sounds good! I tend to flex mine around a bit, too, for the same reasons- schedule changes, need to use up something, whatever. But it still helps to have a plan so I don't have to think of things at the last minute.

Rona's Home Page said...

All of our menus are flexible. Working fulltime requires me to be.
You have a terrific week.