Menu Time Sunday

by Sami

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I’d like to say I could share my entire meal plan for the week, but I haven’t gotten that organized yet. However, I did want to share my on the fly easy dinner from tonight. For lunch we actually ate at Moe’s after church because we had free money to use – we always stock up on gift cards at restaurants at Christmastime because they usually offer a free bonus (case in point – Moe’s offered a free $5 gift card when you spent $20).

Ok, back to dinner. I was going to make homemade pizza, but was missing a key ingredient, so I rummaged through the pantry and fridge and decided instead on Pizza Pasta (since I’d already promised the kids pizza) and Roasted Cauliflower. Typically I probably would have added a green salad and some garlic bread, but I hadn’t done my shopping today, so this was it!

Pizza Pasta & Roasted Cauliflower

Pizza Pasta & Roasted Cauliflower

Here are the basic recipes (since I made it up and didn’t measure!):
In a pan with a little olive oil, I browned 1 lb. ground turkey (but you could easily use ground beef), then added about 5 cloves of chopped garlic (I love garlic!) and about 2T of chopped onion. I seasoned it with a little sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, Steak Grill Seasoning, Garlic salt, Italian Seasoning and Basil. After about 5 minutes, I added @ 3/4 cup of beef stock to deglaze the pan before adding a 15 oz can of diced tomatoes with garlic and onions I had pureed in the Magic Bullet and then another can of tomato sauce (with a little bit of zucchini puree to beef up the veggie content!). I let it all simmer while I boiled my whole wheat penne pasta. Once the penne was done, I added it to the sauce pan (which is also oven safe) with about 1T each of feta cheese and freshly grated parmesan/reggiano. I mixed that all together, sprinkled a light layer of Shredded Italian six cheese blend and then topped with the pepperoni. Then I popped it in the oven at 35o for about 30 minutes. It’s healthier and tastes better than anything you just pull out of a bag or a jar!

I LOVE roasting vegetables. It enhances the flavor and protects the vitamin content. It’s really simple. Take about 1T of butter and 1T of olive oil in an oven safe pan and melt it while the oven’s preheating (typically around 400 degrees, but I just popped it in the 350 oven tonight with the pasta). Once melted, add some chopped garlic, your vegetables and a little salt and coat.
Then just put in the oven about a 1/2 hour, pulling it out about 1/2 way through to shake and turn the veggies over. You can tell they’re done once they start crisping on top. (If you don’t have a lot of time, you quickly steam them just to get the cooking process started, but if you do it more than a couple minutes, they’ll just get soggy).

What are your favorite last minute pantry meals? Let me know!

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