This Week’s Menu.
February 20th – 26th.

I know I’m only a tiny wisp of a thing but that doesn’t mean I don’t own fat pants. I have em. And right now … they fit me. Knowing this, I developed this week’s menu around the fat pant facts. When the fat pants become the regular pants, it’s time to cut some carbs. That means there will be no potatoes this week. I buckled down and created a menu with NO potatoes at all, which is quite a feat for someone who routinely kisses potatoes.

Saddened by the thought of no potatoes in the menu … I comforted myself by adding in macaroni and cheese.


Szechwan Carrot Soup

Grilled chicken with goat cheese & roasted red peppers

Beet & Pear Salad with Goat Cheese and Toasted Pecans


  1. Nancy says: does the potato purge include chips..and I’m curious about the beet salad because I love it some special recipe or just a salad with beets in and the fella have a great weekend..I can’t sleep tonight so I’m guessing the day is going to be pretty crappy…

    • Nancy says:

      OK..never mind about the beet salad..I saw the link and it looks good to me..I think I must try that dressing..I would probably like it more with a lettuce leaf under it though..Thanks for the recipe..

  2. Karena says:

    I love your menu Karen, although I might add another day of Macaroni and cheese, yum!

    Art by Karena

  3. Deb says:

    Dear delusional Karen…WHAT leftover macaroni & cheese (see Sunday menu)…LEFTOVER??? Seriously? Not on my watch!

    • Karen says:

      Deb – I understand your confusion. But you must understand. I make a batch of macaroni and cheese suitable for feeding a small village. Of Giants. So between the 2 of us we *might* manage to spread it out over 2 nights. Fingers crossed. ~ karen

      • Meg says:

        I still share Deb’s incredulity here– there is NEVER leftover Mac and Cheese!

        (of course, it could be said that my fella and I have problems with restraint around that particular dish… especially since we make it with prosciutto…)

  4. Robbin says:

    Can I eat at your house?

  5. Megan says:

    Dear Karen,

    Your menus are a life-saver. I no longer have to think about what to make for the week. As a teacher, I would spend my weekends between grading and cooking several meals to freeze so I had stuff to eat through the week. Now, I have a great plan…and make fresh meals each night. <3

    • Karen says:

      Excellent! As a side note, macaroni and cheese freezes well. I know. It doesn’t seem like it would but it does! So keep that in mind. ~ karen!

  6. Barbie says:

    I can’t wait for summer when my garden has beets! First thing I’m making is your beet salad. Looks SO yummy! as does the whole menu. I’m all for getting the fat pants outa the picture! PS: I just went back and read your post about the “Beet Salad” and can’t help wondering….how are the headaches going? Are you still having them monthly?

  7. Megan says:

    I don’t suppose you have a fabulous recipe for classic fresh minestrone? 🙂

  8. Angela, London. says:

    o.k. wait,is Tuesday’s meal a dare, or do you guys really eat pancakes with fruit whipped cream and bacon???? You are too mixed up!
    Karen, I first found your blog when looking for inspiration on decorating my large bookcase/wall unit – you inspired me to buy a beautiful large deer antler on Ebay. I am currently searching for a beautiful rug and thinking petrol blue, no luck so far… I am a bit of a hoarder wannabe-minimalist and I admired your courage in doing your home detox. What’s going on with your decor now?

    • Karen says:

      Angela – Of course we eat pancakes and fruit topped with whipped cream and bacon! It’s Pancake Tuesday!!! My decor is the same as it’s been for the past 2 years. No changes. Which is a good thing because it means I’m actually happy with the way it is and I didn’t follow too many trends that make my rooms look dated. I *am* looking into adding in some colour though. More on that later. 🙂 ~ karen

      • Angela, London. says:

        It must be lost in translation – whipped cream plus bacon… ? Speaking of strange food combos I just had home-made sultana cake with custard, no bacon though you weirdo!

  9. mothership says:

    ah yes… cutting the carbs… I need to go back to the early 80’s when “dieting” for me was broiling cheese on tomatoes instead of bread!

  10. Megan says:

    Thanks.. actually.. I’ve made your Fire-Broth soup….and LOVE it. However.. I was looking for a minestrone because Lent starts this week and wanted some meatless meal ideas. Thanks though! 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Megan – The Fire Broth soup is mean to be eaten w/out meat! I added the sausage in ’cause I thought it would be a good addition. So just omit it if you want and use vegetable broth instead of chicken and beef. (if you’re being super strict) ~ karen

  11. Meg says:

    Karen, you make my life happy– we used to do breakfast for dinner all the time growing up, it was probably my favorite thing EVER! Also, I swear I’m going to try that soup… and the fire broth… February has been too busy so far, I need to take some time and COOK!

  12. Megan says:

    Wow.. I’m really needy today. My apologies. Anyway, I found a decent Minestrone recipe. Went shopping, got the ingredients to make said minestrone… I haven’t ever had experience using vegetable stock. Is it supposed to be sweet? My soup is sweet. How do I fix? And… I’m loathe to load up on the salt… so hopefully there’s a better solution.
    Again.. sorry for being so flippin needy today. I mean.. I cook all the time.. you’d think I’d not be a moron and be able to solve this on my own. Blah. I’m solving this with a glass of wine. (for me not the soup)

    • Karen says:

      Megan – Sorry for the late reply. Anyoooo I guess you may have figured out by now there really isn’t a way to get rid of “sweet” in a soup. 🙁 ~ karen!

  13. Gayla T says:

    Can we talk about how macaroni is less of a carb load than a potato? I’m dying to hear it. If you can get skinny enough for skinny jeans on this diet I am going for it although I remember saying on my 65th BD to hell with the diets. I’m eating what I want when I want. Amazing thing is that I now seem to be able to eat what I want and not gain weight. Go figure. I feed the grands to much mac and cheese to want to eat it myself so can I sub Au Gratin Potatoes for it? The kids love breakfast for dinner so this week will be a winner. Thanks

  14. Melanie says:

    Pancake Day yay!
    I hear ya on the fat pants becoming regular pants…but I don’t think I could give up potatoes for a whole week! this is impossible to me. Good luck and godspeed 🙂

  15. Jan says:

    Do crisps count as potatoes? I would say no if I were you.

  16. Roxanne says:


    Have you ever posted your recipe for Gooey Macaroni & Cheese? I searched your site, but didn’t come across an actual (Karen) recipe.


    • Karen says:

      Hi Roxanne – Sorry, no, I haven’t posted the recipe I use. (If I’ve posted any recipes that I’m using in the weekly menu, I include the links to them all at the end of the post). I will eventually get it up. ~ karen!

      • Roxanne says:

        I look forward to the recipe when you do post it.

        BTW: I hope all is going well with the chickens. Any word yet on your town’s (poultry) regulations?

        • Karen says:

          Not yet. Everyone will know when there’s an official ruling! So far it’s just a lot of talk. So I continue to quietly keep my illegal chickens. 🙂 ~ karen

  17. Sarah says:

    I’m reading a book called Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight. The bottom line is that the wheat we eat now is a long way different from the original Biblical wheat and it reacts on blood/sugar levels as much or more than pure sugar. Important for diabetics and people trying to lose weight – and other health issues. Wheat is in so much of our food these days. Dr Davis’ website is

  18. Lonelle says:

    I am right with you on the potatoe thing! I have been wearing my fat jeans for a couple months now and I am tired of it!! Plus its Lent and I have decided to give up potatoes, which I totally love french fries!! (I may be a total biotch and want to kill someone by the end, but I will hopefully loose some fat!! lol)

    But I can’t wait for your Mac n Cheese recipe!! Yum!!

  19. Gillian says:

    Um….I couldn’t lose weight I this either. Wed And Thurs are the only two days not carb and fat laden. Sigh…..I remember being a tiny whisp of a thing too….

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