What’s for Dinner?

So.  I kind of feel like I’m being cheated here.  You people know what I’m eating on any given night, any given week.  All you have to do is click on my This Week’s Menu and there it is for God and everyone to see.  Karen’s eatin’ beets and will think she is dying tomorrow.  Until she remembers she ate beets.

But … what about you?  What are you people eating?  Just because I come up with, plan and shop for an entire weeks worth of meals doesn’t mean I don’t want a little help every once in a while.

I, like most other people get into a rut with preparing dinners.  Most people have 5 main meals in heavy rotation.  Think about it.  I bet you have 5 standbys that you go to all the time.  Then, if you’re like me, once every week or two you slip in a new recipe.  This sometimes results in a great new recipe to add into the rotation, but more often than not it results in a really bad dinner and a lot of snacking that night.  I find steel cut oatmeal (groats) is good in an “I only ate 3 bites of my dinner because it was so disgusting” pinch.

So … lemme have it.

What are YOU eating for dinner this week?

You’ll notice I strategically planted this post one day prior to posting my weekly menu, so as not to influence you.

Have a great weekend.  Go out and do something!   Or not.  Whatever floats your groats.


  1. Susan says:

    Monday: Fresh mozzarella sandwich on ciabatta with roasted peppers, spring lettuce and olive tapenade. Potato chips. Iced Tea

    Tuesday: Homemade falafel, Greek salad, feta, hummus, olives. Fresh fruit salad w pineapple, mango, pomegranate, kiwi and blueberries in orange juice dressing.

    Wednesday: Spicy eggplant w tofu and brown rice. Cucumber and onion salad w Asian vinaigrette.

    Thursday: Homemade veggie burgers on whole wheat rolls. Sweet cucumber salad. French fries.

    Friday: Southwest roasted tomato soup with cheese crouton.

    Saturday: Black bean chili. Veggie nachos. Guacamole. Salsa.

    Sunday: angel hair pasta w tomato sauce. Green salad w homemade Bleu cheese dressing. Garlic bread.

  2. Brianne says:

    This has been one of my absolute FAVORITE recipes to make lately. I probably make it once a week:

    Quinoa with Spinach and Cheese:

    LOVE IT!! :)

  3. Emily J says:

    Well, last night’s belated Saint Patrick’s day meal of corned beef, cabbage, and roasted veggies was SO good that Todd swore that another bite of the corned beef would make him forget about the lemon bars. It was *non*

    • Karen says:

      Emily J – Great. Thanks. Now I’m thinking about lemon bars. I *don’t* actually like desserty type stuff but I LOVE anything with lemon. ~ k

      • Emily J says:

        Ina is my culinary hero. Though your broccoli soup has come into heavy rotation. Say… isn’t it stupid late wherever in Canadia you are? I need to sleep, so whatevs. Spell check will just hijack my sentence anywhy (upcoming post alert: evils of auto-spell check and the Idiocracy of society)

  4. Katie Piotrowski says:

    Well, last night we had filet mignon with baked potatoes and corn. Tonight, I am making a mock chicken dish from my local Mexican restaurant…Pollo a la Plancha. It is basically chicken breast served with fresh green peppers and white onions with pico. YUM! And our side will be mock Southwest Eggrolls ( http://momonamission.me/?p=4226 ) Then tomorrow, Terriyaki Turkey Burgers with bacon, red onion and avocado probably with a side salad. Sitting down to finsih up my menu plan for the rest of teh week and next.

  5. Donna Booker says:

    Little late to the game, but here’s what I made last week:

    Pioneer Woman’s Chicken Cacciatore (she’s like an American you):

    1 pound Pasta Or Egg Noodles
    8 whole Chicken Thighs, Skin On (can Use Any Whole Piece Chicken)
    Salt And Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste
    1/2 cup All-purpose Flour
    4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
    2 Tablespoons Butter
    1 whole Medium Onion, Halved And Sliced
    2 whole Red Bell Peppers, Cored And Sliced (not Too Thin)
    2 whole Green Bell Peppers, Cored And Sliced (not Too Thin)
    5 cloves Garlic, Diced
    12 ounces, weight Mushrooms (white Or Crimini), Sliced
    1/2 teaspoon Ground Thyme
    1/4 teaspoon Turmeric
    1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt
    Red Pepper Flakes, Crushed, To Taste (optional)
    3/4 cups Dry White Wine
    1 can (28 Ounce) Whole Or Diced Tomatoes (with Their Juice)
    Chopped Flat Leaf Parsley
    Parmesan Cheese, For Sprinkling

    Preparation Instructions

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F).

    Cook pasta according to package directions. Do not overcook! Drain and set aside.

    Salt and pepper both sides of the pieces of chicken. Dredge chicken in flour. Heat olive oil and butter in a heavy skillet or Dutch oven on the stovetop over medium-high heat. Place chicken skin down in pan, four pieces at a time. Brown chicken on both sides, then remove to a clean plate. Repeat with remaining chicken. Pour off half the fat in the pan and discard.

    Add sliced onions and peppers, as well as the garlic. Stir around for 1 minute. Add mushrooms and stir around for 1 minute. Add thyme, turmeric, and salt. (And crushed red pepper flakes if you like things a little spicy.) Add extra black pepper to taste. Stir, then pour in wine. Allow to bubble.

    Pour in canned tomatoes and stir to combine. Add chicken back into the pan, skin side up, without totally submerging the chicken. Place lid on the pot and put it into the oven for 45 minutes. Remove lid and increase heat to 375 degrees. Cook for an additional 15 minutes.

    Remove pan from the oven. Remove chicken from the pot and place it on a plate. Remove vegetables from pot and place them on a plate. Return pot to burner and turn heat to medium high. Cook and reduce sauce for a couple of minutes.

    Pour cooked, drained noodles on a large platter or in a big serving bowl. Add vegetables all over the top, then place chicken pieces on top of the vegetables. Spoon juices from the pot over the chicken and pasta (amount to taste.)

    Before serving, sprinkle on chopped fresh parsley and grated Parmesan.

    Also made her Lasagna (froze half):

    1-1/2 pound Ground Beef
    1 pound Hot Breakfast Sausage
    2 cloves Garlic, Minced
    2 cans (14.5 Ounce) Whole Tomatoes
    2 cans (6 Ounce) Tomato Paste
    2 Tablespoons Dried Parsley
    2 Tablespoons Dried Basil
    1 teaspoon Salt
    3 cups Lowfat Cottage Cheese
    2 whole Beaten Eggs
    1/2 cup Grated (not Shredded) Parmesan Cheese
    2 Tablespoons Dried Parsley
    1 teaspoon Salt
    1 pound Sliced Mozzarella Cheese
    1 package (10 Ounce) Lasagna Noodles
    (add 1/2 Teaspoon Salt And 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil To Pasta Water)

    Preparation Instructions

    Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

    Meanwhile, in a large skillet or saucepan, combine ground beef, sausage, and garlic. Cook over medium-high heat until browned. Drain half the fat; less if you’re feeling naughty. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, 2 tablespoons parsley, basil and salt. After adding the tomatoes, the sauce mixture should simmer for 45 minutes while you are working on the other steps.

    In a medium bowl, mix cottage cheese, beaten eggs, grated Parmesan, 2 more tablespoons parsley, and 1 more teaspoon salt. Stir together well. Set aside. Cook lasagna until “al dente” (not overly cooked).

    To assemble:
    Arrange 4 cooked lasagna noodles in the bottom of a baking pan, overlapping if necessary. Spoon half the cottage cheese mixture over the noodles. Spread evenly. Cover cottage cheese with a layer of mozzarella cheese. Spoon a little less than half the meat/sauce mixture over the top.

    Repeat, ending with meat/sauce mixture. Sprinkle top generously with extra Parmesan.

    Either freeze, refrigerate for up to two days, or bake immediately: 350-degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes, or until top is hot and bubbly.

    Son was sick one day, so made Chicken Caldo, which is chicken soup with big chunks of vegetables: corn on the cob, potatoes, carrots, celery, zucchini and whatever else you have around. Just make sure it’s big. No peas or corn or little things. Big things. Makes for a big messy eatin’ soup. With fresh tortillas or crusty bread for soaking up the broth. Mmm.

    Friday was a beautiful day, so we grilled big Ribeyes outside (South Texas: there’s a reason we love it here!). Roasted some fingerling potatoes with olive oil and chopped garlic, had the little bit of broccoli left on my plant, and a salad from my garden.

    This week, its supposed to rain Monday and Tuesday, so I’m going to make:

    Fire Broth Soup
    Whole wheat bread (if I feel like making it)

    Mushroom/Goat cheese Ravioli. Don’t have a recipe for it, but it sounds good, so I’m going to wing it.
    Lamb and pork meatballs
    Roasted broccoli (sounds good)

    Weather should be good on Wed-on, so I’m thinking:

    Roasted chicken
    Sage and Onion Stuffing
    Roasted zucchini and carrots

    Crab cakes
    Cole Slaw
    Hush puppies
    Thick cut sweet potato steak fries

    Chicken salad (from leftover chicken) on a bed of mixed baby greens
    Fresh tomatoes from Farmer’s Market

    Then I’ll be taken out to dinner next weekend.
    That’s the plan.

    Oh, and I’m making dog biscuits too. I have an older dog that needs soft food, so I make her biscuits. Don’t tell everyone, though. When my friends find out I have to make enough for everyone. So don’t tell them.

  6. Jen says:

    You’re actually the reason that I plan ahead now – I have to be away from home for three nights so I make several servings of things that last well in the fridge.
    Last week, it was smoky white bean chicken chili, roasted mixed veggies with basalmic drizzle, ropa vieja, vinegary no-may coleslaw, and rotini with garlicy kale, tomatoes, and sweet potato. I keep sacks of organic veggies in the freezer and they get thrown in with the meat dishes in addition to the cooked sides.
    Thank you for inspiring me to plan ahead! We’ve saved a fortune in lunches and “I’m too tired to cook” takeout dinners.
    I also made your broccoli soup a bunch of times!

  7. kelliblue says:

    I’m usually too tired to cook, and my oven is now used for um…”storage.” So it’s usually something like a toasted bagel with my homemade chipotle spread, a slice of cheese, some fresh spinach and a slice of tomato…yummmmy!

    Or cereal. :)

  8. Gayla T says:

    It’s going to take you at least a week to read what everyone is having, leaving you no time to cook or eat. I never plan a week ahead. I’m doing good to figure out day by day because I’m feeding those kids who don’t like anything. Fortunately I have just been digging in the freezer to see if I have enough Salmon filets to make for St Pat’s tomorrow. I’m cooking this year so it will not be corned beef and cabbage. I’m doing the salmon with butter and lemon pepper in the oven. Making boxty which is just potato pancakes with leeks in them. I don’t have recipes as it’s stuff I’ve made all my life. I suppose about 2 lbs of potatoes peeled boiled and mashed with some butter, milk 2 or 3 eggs and flour. Melt a stick of butter with a couple of dollops of vegetable oil so it doesn’t scorch. Drop the potatoes in, about a heaping Tablespoon at a time and mash the center down so it’a a patty and fry.When it’s brown flip it over and brown the other side. Take them out and drain on a paper towel and that’s it. I always make green deviled eggs that everyone says look gross and then hog them down as fast as they can. Just normal deviled eggs w/green food color. I’m thinking I’ll make cauliflower and broccoli salad with radishes, sunflower seeds and Dublin cheese cubes in it.I’m also making Irish Soda Bread. I have this around the house a lot of the time just because we like it so much. I am doing a new recipe for dessert. It’s for the relatives who are half Irish and half Italian since Mascarpone is an Italian cheese and the Bailey’s is of course Irish.

    Bailey’s Irish and Italian Pie

    1 Graham Cracker Crust either premade or home made. If home made try using brown instead of white sugar in it.

    2 pkgs chocolate chips
    4 cups mascarpone cheese purchased or home made
    1/4 cup Bailey’s Irish Creme
    1 t. vanilla
    1 chocolate bar

    Melt chocolate chips over hot water or in microwave. Do not get water in the chocolate or it will sieze and you will have to throw it away. Don’t ask how I know this. LOL Combine vanilla and liquer in mixing bowl. Stir in mascarpone until blended. Slowly add chocolate stirring constantly as you do until it is well blended. I do all the blending in the KitchenAid Pour into cooled pie crust. Decorate with whipped cream or leave plain. Sprinkle with chocolate chips or chocolate curls. This fits in a deep dish pie pan. Refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours before serving.

    Home Made Mascarpone

    1 qt half and half or light cream Cream must be pasturized but not ultra pasturized.

    1/8 t. tartaric acid or 1 T lemon juice.

    Tartaric acid is not cream of tartar and is somewhat difficult to find. I have always used the lemon juice and love the taste.
    Mix together and let sit for a few minutes. Pour into a sieve lined with cheese cloth or double coffee filters. Let it drain for 4 hours or overnight. I keep it in a tupperware bowl in the fridge and it’s good for a couple of weeks. This works on the same principal as making sour cream or milk for a recipe when you use a t. of white vinigar to a cup of milk to sour it. Cooking is science but not rocket science. On Sunday I’ll eat left overs of some kind or a sandwich. I don’t have the girls so I don’t cook. While looking to see if I had enough Salmon in the freezer to feed my Irishmen I came across some things I had forgotten so we will be eating out of the freeser the rest of the week. They always want macaroni and cheese at least once a week and I usually do weiners with it. I don’t like most weiners so I’ve ruined them by feeding them the good Jewish brand that is all beef. Their mom does not appreciate that much. I found a hen that needs to be used so I’ll bake that with stuffing. That will be popular. I don’t have them or cook on Wed so I eat out or pick around here on the chicken. The next day it will be Granny’s big juicy chees burgers. I didn’t name them that. It was the older two talking about mine compared to the ones at home that are formed and frozen from Sam’s. The only thing I do different is sprinkle that old red season salt on them and turn in the corners of the cheese slices. I do that so all the cheese stays on the burger and doesn’t melt and run down into the skillet. It really makes a difference. I also found chicken breasts and they love Chicken Alfredo that they call Chicken Freddy. I bread and fry the breasts, slice them on top of angel hair pasta and pour on sauce out of a jar that I warm up in the microwave. I usually fry the chicken before I pick them up at school as it’s clear across town and it’a about 4:15 by the time we get home. They have to be at swim team by 5:15 or 6 depending on the day so we have to throw things together and boogie. That’s pretty much how we eat although there are a few other things they like but not many. I always serve a vegie and some eat one thing and the other one doesn’t. I always have a dessert as they need the energy to go swim laps for an hour. The 1 2 3 cake is the biggie right now. If you haven’t heard about it…..mix any flavor cake mix with an angel food cake mix in a large zip lock bag. They love carrot and chocolate but although the instructions don’t say, I add about 3/4 cup of cocoa to the chocolate or it is not chocolate enough. Shake that all up in the bag and use 3 level tablespoons cake mix, 2 teaspoons water and stir it up in a microwavable cup or bowl. We are using the pyrex custard cups. You then put it in the microwave for 1 minute and it is done. We keep cream cheese and chocolate frosting in the cans in the fridge and put 1 teaspoon on each cake. The hot cake melts the cold frosting so they can spread it around and they are good to go. Even the 3 year old makes her own but I take everyone’s out of the mike because they are super hot so be careful. They would do that every day but I’m a little tired of them so we have a scoop of ice cream in a bowl or on a cone or jello or whatever. If I give them fruit some will eat it or others won’t. They are really so picky but so is their mother and they now say that they have found a gene that causes it and it passes to the kids usually through the mom and I know it’s true of these kids as the daddy eats everything and is alway on a diet. Once in a great while I make something that I get hungry for but they just don’t eat if it’s yucky stuff. We have Mexican night pretty regularly and pizza that they help make is popular but my life is pretty much kid food. I eat what I like when I eat out with friends or go to one of my children’s houses for dinner when my girls are not here. I just don’t bother to cook when it’s just for me. I like to make family dinners on the weekends if I’m not too tired from being a 67 year old mother all week. It’s just four days a week but 11 or 12 hour days.

    • Karen says:

      Gayla – a) I think you need/deserve a vacation where all you do is lay on the couch and watch made for TV movies and eat chicken wings. b) When you say you “found a hen”. Do you mean, like … it’s running around the neighbourhood? c) I have a recipe for my potato pancakes on the site. LOVE potato pancakes with chili sauce. ~ karen!

      • Gayla T says:

        The hen in question here was hiding in the depths of my freezer. However we do have something chickenish going on in the neighborhood because we hear him crowing. You would think I’d need a vacation but the days the girls aren’t here I get very bored. I have always been a type A personality although I do relax by reading. I’ve never tried the chili sauce on boxty but it sounds good. I just love anything made of potaoes. I went to Ireland a few years ago and ate Salmon and some kind of potato every day I was there. The best potato was boiled in chicken stock. Looks like a plain old boiled potato but it’s so good. Also loved the potatoes mashed with turnips or rutabagas. The Irish know more ways to do them than any other country and they were all good.

  9. Julie L says:

    Friday night, we went out to eat, Boiled Crawfish!! Yum, but tomorrow night we are having Pizza!! Last night we had grilled chicken Salad with all the trimmings!!! Sunday night we are having Coconut Chicken!! Thanks for all that you do for us Karen!!

    • Karen says:

      :) You’re welcome Julie. It is *without a doubt* the lowest paying yet most enjoyable job I’ve ever had. ~ karen

  10. Karol says:

    Friday nights are take out nights. Tonight was Hawaiian pizza from Pizza Hut. Thin and crispy, of course. Delish.

  11. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    Wow..You ladies are awesome..Thanks so much Debbie for the Olive Garden salad recipe..One of my favorite salads..One of our favorite meals here is Homemade Hot Wings with Homemade Mac & Cheese..This week I also made Ham Pot Pie – Now this is not the kind of Pot Pies that all you ladies are talking about..This is a Pennsylvania Dutch recipe and it can be made with ham, chicken or beef..It is basically cooking your meat in a big pan on the stove till you have a good broth..then you add potatoes to the broth and lastly you make homemade noodles and cut them into squares and drop into the pan..stir them up as you drop them in so that they don’t stick together and when they are cooked through..It’s Soup or Pot Pie..What you call Pot Pies..we call meat pies..And of course we are having our Corned Beef and Cabbage w/potatoes & carrots tomorrow..with fresh corned beef..not that mush in a can..and also will have Irish Soda Bread with it..we only have this meal on Irish Day and I love it..OK..I must go back now and check out some of these recipes..Thanks to everyone for sharing!!! Sorry I am late again tonight Karen..I was Thrift Store shopping all day..

    • Karen says:

      Nancy – I thought when you said your “Pot Pie” wasn’t like everyone else’s “Pot Pie” that you meant … well … nevermind. ~ karen

      • Nancy Blue Moon says:

        No…I never made a “POT” pie..I was know to partake of those delicious little brownies in the 60’s though..lol

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