Welcome to the first edition of Menu Plan Mondays! Surely, you have read about the many benefits of a family meal time. These are just a few:
- · Healthy eating habits
- · Better social skills
- · Stronger bond and family unity
- · Builds conversational skills
- · Decreases risk for obesity
- · Reduces risk for drug or alcohol use among teens
- · Helps academic performance
- · Creates a place for parents to share family values
- · Creates a place for kids to share problems
So how exactly can we make this happen at the pace of life we tend to assume today? Setting family dinner as a priority and making a plan! You can’t eat what isn’t in the house, and you won’t have what you need without a good plan.
I’m sharing my family’s plan here with you. I hope you will take a few of these suggestions and incorporate them into your plan. Don’t get bogged down in the details but do jot down a plan for the week to make more time to focus on what is most important at the table, your family.
Monday – Salisbury Steak with Brown Rice and Steamed Vegetables
Tuesday – Crispy Chicken Tortilla Rollups with Simple Southwest Tossed Salad
Simple Southwest Tossed Salad
Green Leaf Lettuce, chopped
Black Beans, rinsed and drained
Green Onions, sliced
Shredded Colby/Jack Cheese
Wednesday – On Wednesday nights, our church offers a catered meal and a reasonable price. This allows our family table to include members of our church family as well. Since this is a night our family is out of the house, I would offer a simple one-dish meal if this meal was not offered.
Thursday – Barbecued Pork Chops, Baked Sweet Potatoes, and a nice Succotash (throw in a mix of the vegetables you have on hand such as frozen baby lima beans and corn with fresh mushrooms sautéed in a skilled with a little butter or olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper).
Friday – Our local Catholic community has a Friday night Fish Fry on the first three Fridays of Lent in their Parish center. We will be having our choice of Fried or Blackened Fish Sandwiches with side offerings of Baked Potatoes, Fries, Green Beans, Slaw or Mac and Cheese. Pick up a box dinner and make it fun and easy on yourself for a relaxing Friday night!
Saturday – Garlic Lime Chicken, Angel Hair Pasta with Herbs Pasta Roni, Italian Salad
Watch Leanne Ely teach you how to make her delicious Garlic Lime Chicken here!
Green Leaf Lettuce, chopped
Sunday – Hoppin’ John Soup with Cornbread and Coleslaw
Hoppin’ John Soup
1 onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
2 T. butter or olive oil
1 pkg. frozen blackeyed peas
1 box, Uncle Ben’s Long Grain & Wild Rice (with seasoning packet)
1 lb. breakfast sausage, browned and drained
4 c. chicken broth
Melt butter or heat olive oil in a large stockpot and sauté onion, carrots, and celery until tender. Add remaining ingredients and simmer until hot and flavors blend or add all ingredients to crockpot on low setting for two hours. Serve with cornbread.
Don’t forget that St. Patrick’s Day is coming next Monday. St. Patrick’s Day at our house calls for Corned Beef and Cabbage served with Beer Bread. If that doesn’t work for your family, try to expand your horizons with a Shepherd’s Pie or Mulligatawny Stew.
Until next week, enjoy!