What we actually had for dinner 11/14 – 11/18 (with pictures and notes)

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In order to help me plan better, I decided I should document what I actually do with my plans, so I can use that information for future planning.  So, I took pictures of our dinners each night this week, and I am gong to compare the plan with what happened, along with notes about what changes I made to the recipes.  The pictures are not that great, but I have hungry children waiting to eat when I put this stuff on the table!

Sunday plan:  Carmelized Onion-Butternut Roast with Chestnuts, roasted Brussel’s sprouts, cranberry sauce

What we had:

Exactly what was on the menu.  It was so delicious, too!  Okay, I was the only one who liked the Brussels sprouts, but I only made the kids eat two bites, and they survived, and I liked them enough for everyone.  Both kids like butternut squash, so that was helpful. This was the first time I had had chestnuts.  They were good, but kind of expensive.  We will be having this again.

Monday plan:  Mole Skillet Pie with Greens, steamed broccoli, orange/blackberry fruit salad

What we had:

Pretty much what was planned, except that Trader Joe’s didn’t have any blackberries, so we had blueberries instead.  I know, totally out of season, but I am making many efforts to eat seasonally, and sometimes I just crave the out of season stuff.  As for the mole skillet pie, did you go to the link?  It has chocolate in it!  It was awesome.  I used turnip greens from the garden, and I added a grated zucchini to the filling because I had a zucchini in the fridge and I wanted to use it before it went bad.  My mom was over for dinner this night, and she said I should definitely make it again, which I was already planning to do.

Tuesday plan:  Tempeh noodle casserole, steamed broccoli/carrots/snap peas, pineapple

What we had:

I volunteered at the elementary book school fair from 4 – 6, then we had to walk through the book fair and pick out some books, and then we walked home, and we had a pretty short amount of time to get dinner cooked, served and eaten before the kids were picked up by their dad.  Fortunately I had some gnocchi and a jar of sauce in the cabinet, which I can get on the table in 20 minutes from taking out the pot.  I added some frozen peas and a bit of baby spinach, and rounded out the meal with some steamed green beans and applesauce.  We all liked this, and it saved us on a busy night.

Wednesday plan:  Lentils and rice with carmelized onion tahini sauce, beets, steamed sweet potatoes

What we had:

I got this started, with onions carmelizing on the stove, and brown rice and quinoa in the microwave steamer, when I found that I was out of tahini!  How could this happen?  I definitely need to head to the international foods store for the big tub of tahini this weekend–that is the best part of the meal!  It was still pretty good, though, although the beets were a bit old, and neither the boy nor I liked them (the girl doesn’t like them anyway.)  I spent all of the time that I would have used making the sweet potatoes looking for tahini, so we did without and I grabbed a bag of broccoli and cauliflower florets I could throw in the microwave for 5 minutes instead.
Thursday plan:  Peanut noodles, steamed green beans, green smoothies

We ate the green beans on Tuesday, so those weren’t available tonight.  The peanut noodles had plenty of veggies, though, so I decided to just forget that element of the meal.  I made a double batch of the sauce, and used a tub of Healthy 8 diced veggies from Trader Joe’s, along with a pound of extra firm tofu.  Personally, I think that if this was the only recipe I ever got off the internet, it would be worth it, because it is just so darn awesome, but the kids aren’t really fans.  Of course, the boy said he didn’t like it, but still had seconds; the girl didn’t eat much.  We all liked the smoothies, though.  I used 2 cups of calcium-enriched orange juice, 1 cup of vanilla soy yogurt, 1 cup of blueberries and a bunch of baby spinach.  The girl does not like that they are green, but she does like the taste.
All in all, a pretty good use of the plan.  We mostly had what I planned on, with some slight changes in the side dishes and one wholesale substitution.  I think we did get a fair amount of fruits and veggies with dinner, and I ate a lot of leftovers for lunches, so I got plenty of veggies during the day.  The kids did bring some baby carrots, so they did get a bit more veggies, although we are still working on that.

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