Sunday, November 16, 2008

Menu Plan Monday - thrifty and tasty, what else?

Menu Plan Monday

We went to church this morning but before we left I started a loaf of whole wheat bread in the bread machine. This machine is new to us - we got it recently at a garage sale for very little money. It's a Sunbeam and had no manual but I found one at Retrevo. I like that it has the delay timer feature and that's a handy thing to have on mornings like this one. When we returned from church the bread was finished and still toasty warm.

After church we went to La Michoacana, a hispanic market right next to our church. They had small, ugly, wonderful tasting oranges 8 for $1 so we got 8 of those. We also got 2 lbs of thin cut top sirloin steak for $2.29 a lb. I haven't seen decent sirloin at that price for awhile and might go back to get more. I think I'll make Bistec Ranchero, recipe below, with some of it one night this week.

As usual, our menus for this week focus on thrifty dishes. However, thrifty need not be synonymous with boring or bland and I'm trying to keep that in mind and come up with some different dishes. It isn't easy, though, and I keep reverting to the same dishes I've been preparing for 25 years. Help, I've fallen (in a rut) and I can't get out!

Anyway, tonight we'll have chili and broccoli cheese soup that have been hanging out in the fridge a few days and we'll probably have them with a slice of the homemade bread and tossed salad.

Saturday evening I broiled and baked a chuck roast in the convection oven. I seasoned the meat with just some garlic powder and freshly ground pepper and it turned out so tender and juicy. Since the oven is very small its almost impossible to cook the meat and the vegetables together so when the roast was done I poured the liquid from it onto the vegetables (mushrooms, red potatoes, zucchini and carrots) and baked them for about 30 minutes. We had some of the meat today for lunch and will have the remainder later in the week. By the way, the meat had barely started to cool when DH decided it was there for snacking. Before I realized it, he'd snacked quite a bit so the roast will more than likely feed us only twice rather than the three times I'd planned.

Wednesday night we'll have whatever I cook at my mother's house.

Here's the meals for the rest of the week, in no particular order:

Beef and potato pie, made with the leftover roast beef and a mix of mashed cauliflower and mashed potatoes, served with green beans and salad

Beans (lima, kidney, or great northern) slow cooked with smoked turkey leg meat and served with cornbread

Tuna noodle casserole, another of my favorite comfort foods, made with soy noodles and served with salad and steamed spinach

Salads made with several leafy lettuces and all sorts of delicious vegetables

Bistec Ranchero served with wild rice, steamed zucchini, and tossed salad

Bistec Ranchero:

1 lb tender beef
4 Roma tomatoes, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 medium white onions, diced
2 or more chiles serrano, minced
sea salt to taste
Oil for frying

Cut the beef into small strips, about 1/2 an inch wide by 2 inches long. Sauté the onions, chiles, and garlic. Add the meat and allow to brown slightly. Add the tomatoes and sauté until the tomatoes begin to give up their juices. Add the salt, cover, and allow to simmer for approximately 10 minutes.

If you know a better way to make this dish, please share!

And for more menu ideas, go to Menu Plan Monday and peruse the great menus you'll find linked there!


Roxi said...

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Lynn said...

Your meals lood good. Thanks for sharing.

Your Frugal Friend, Niki said...

Oh wow, Bistec Ranchero sounds fabulous!