Monday 30 June 2008

Meal Planning Monday

Well I have been searching around for good homemaking inspiration over these past few weeks and have been learning a lot. This morning Crystal at Biblical Womanhood encouraged us to do a number of things but one of them was do share the meal plan for that day. Now I have become a bit obsessed with meal planning. I plan our menus every week on monday morning and then go and do the shop! We now have a plan stuck to the kitchen cupboard door and my husband knows exactly what is coming on any particular day. I share this thing I do with a number of people from time to time and often initally sound surprised and then pause and think and consider that it might be a good idea.

So why is it a good idea for us? Well one thing is my husband eats his lunch in his works canteen, they have nutritious, filling, reasonably priced food and so it seems a good idea for now. However, before I meal planned, I often suggested a meal for the evening only to find he had already had the same thing for lunch! Also as I work 3 days a week and often don't get in until 7pm. Before I meal planned if Nigel arrived home before me he would look bewildered through the cupboards and fridge unsure what to put together.

So what advantages does meal planning bring. I can come home late from work and know there is a small chance dinner might be getting started, I can produce a meal and know that if hubbie had it for lunch aswell it is his own fault! And finally I buy less food, throw less away and can make a few meals up on monday for the week ahead (just as I did today, spaghetti sauce for wednesday and meat sauce for a lasagne on sunday!)

Back to today, so I planned to use a recipe I picked up in Sainsburys this evening, from Jamie Oliver's "feed your family for a fiver" range, the fishcakes one. Sadly for Sainsburys I actually did my shop in Tesco's so they didn't really benefit! Anyway the result was very pleasing, the pre-cooked version is shown here.

Pre-baking fishcakes

The recipe said to cook them for 15 minutes but I found they hadn't crisped up very well so I left them in for another 5-10mins. Served them with salad and a little bit of warm crusty bread. They were delicious and very filling! I forgot to photograph the finished item until after we had eaten. However there was one left and so I just manged to catch it. All in all I can thoroughly recommend the recipe. It may even become one of my entertaining recipes! (Although not for my mother as she really doesn't like fish!)

The cooked version

And finally what does the week ahead hold as a result of meal planning monday. Left over cold meat and baked potatoes tomorrow, spag bol on wednesday, beef rendang on thursday, out at friends on friday, left overs sat and lasagne sunday.  I lvoe meal planning mondays :-)

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