Sunday, May 23, 2010

Weekly Menu for the week of May 24

Hey everyone! Welcome to my weekly menu!

I almost sent out an “Elastic Pants Warning” the night we ate the Sausage and Tomato Pasta … There is a reason we have that only a FEW times a year. I couldn’t stop eating – it is soooo good!!!

Remember I told you last week that we would be using up the rest of the shrimp? This week we are having Shrimp Tacos with a Tropical Salsa – the tacos are fantastic with or without the salsa. So if your family isn’t into fruity dinners go ahead and skip it. My hubby loves them without the salsa!

The big special this week at Giant Eagle is Buy One Get One Free Boneless Top Round London Broil. We are going to serve one this week and use the other one in a week or two. We are also taking advantage of the seasonal produce by having lots of spinach, salad and asparagus!

Summer is almost here and there are TONS of savings at GE and lots of coupons to help with your Memorial Day parties. Stock up, save and plan accordingly. I purposely did not include a lot of traditional grilling fare this week because of the holiday weekend. However, I have included a “bonus recipe” that you may want to have over the weekend. These are simply the best baked beans I have ever had!!!! This makes a bunch of beans BUT you can freeze them into servings for your family to have all summer long as a quick easy side dish.

ALSO – due to the Holiday, next week’s menu will be posted on Monday! Be safe near those big, bad grills!

Follow the plan so you can save time, money, and a few calories! Remember – cooking our own food is healthier than ordering in and eating out any day!!! Your family, wallet and waistline will thank you!

I hope you all enjoy your week, the recipes and the savings!


Shrimp Tacos with Tropical Salsa
Tossed Salad

Shrimp Tacos with Tropical Salsa - adapted from Cooking Light

1/4 cup chopped green onions
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon canned chopped green chilies
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 (11-ounce) can mandarin oranges in light syrup, drained
1 (8-ounce) can pineapple tidbits in juice, drained

Cooking spray
1 cup yellow bell pepper strips
1 cup thinly sliced red onion
1 t. of minced garlic
1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tomato, chopped and seeded
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
8 (6-inch – soft taco size) flour tortillas
1 1/4 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese

To prepare the salsa, combine the first 6 ingredients in a bowl. Cover and chill.
To prepare tacos, place a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat until hot. Add bell pepper, onion, and garlic; sauté 2 minutes. Add shrimp, tomato, cumin, and chili powder; sauté 3 minutes or until shrimp are done. Stir in cilantro. Spoon 1/2 cup shrimp mixture over one half of each tortilla, and top with about 3 tablespoons cheese and 2 tablespoons salsa; fold tortillas in half.


Cajun Chicken Cakes
Horseradish-Garlic Sauce
Broiled Asparagus

Cajun Chicken Cakes – Adapted from Cooking Light – similar to crab cakes

3 T. Plain breadcrumbs
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts – about a pound
¼ cup of chopped fresh chives
3 T. mayonnaise
1 ½ t. of Cajun seasoning
¼ t. salt
1 large egg
1 T. of Canola Oil
4 Hamburger buns (optional – only if preparing as a sandwich)

Cut the chicken into large pieces and then place in a food processor and pulse until the chicken is ground. Combine the breadcrumbs and the next 4 ingredients in a bowl. Add the ground chicken and divide into 8 portions so that each patty is about ½” thick.

Heat the oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the patties and cook about 7 minutes on each side or until the chicken patties are cooked all the way through. Serve the patties with or without a bun. Top with the Horseradish-Garlic sauce. If making as sandwiches add some crisp lettuce leaves.

Horseradish-Garlic Sauce

4 T. of mayo
4 t. of horseradish
2 t. of minced garlic
Pinch of salt

Combine all of the ingredients while the chicken is cooking or it can be prepared in advance and chilled. Serve the sauce on top of the chicken cakes.

*** the kids LOVED this sauce and told me that it tasted like the Ranch dressing at Houlihan’s

Broiled Asparagus

1 bunch of asparagus
1 T. of olive oil
Salt and pepper

Trim off the bottom inch of the asparagus. Spread out on a jelly-roll pan and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt (I prefer Kosher) and pepper. Toss so that the asparagus is evenly coated. Lay flat and place under the broiled for about 5 minutes until the asparagus has crisped a little.


London Broil
Sautéed Spinach
Baked Potato

London Broil (adapted from Weber’s Big Book of Grilling) – Double Duty!

½ cup of olive oil
½ cup of red wine vinegar
2 T. of Balsamic vinegar
2 t. of chopped rosemary
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 t. of kosher salt
1 t. fresh ground pepper
1 Top Round– 3-4lbs. – cut thick for London Broil

Combine all of the ingredients in a large zip-lock bag and marinate for at least 8 hours – preferably overnight.

Remove the beef from the bag and discard the marinade. Place beef on a hot grill and grill about 10 minutes each side or until desired doneness. Remove the beef from the grill and let rest for at least 5 minutes. Cut the beef in thin slices against the grain and serve warm.

*** We will use leftovers later in the week – plan accordingly – if you need to double it go for it!


Bow-Tie Pasta with Spinach and Mushrooms
Tossed Salad

Bow-Tie Pasta with Spinach and Mushrooms – adapted from Cooking Light

8 ounces uncooked bow-tie pasta
2 T. olive oil, divided
1 large red pepper sliced
2 cups of sliced mushrooms
3 garlic cloves, minced
1-2 T. balsamic vinegar (original recipe calls for 3 T. – too sweet for me)
1 T. Dijon mustard
1/4 t. salt
1 pkg. of baby spinach
1/2 C. grated parmesan cheese
Fresh ground pepper to taste

Cook the pasta according to the package directions.
While the pasta is cooking, heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add bell pepper, mushrooms, and garlic, and sauté for 10 minutes. Combine 1 tablespoon oil, vinegar, mustard, and salt in a large bowl.
Drain pasta. Add pasta, spinach, and mushroom mixture to bowl; toss well. Serve with cheese and black pepper, if desired.

***Kid Tip*** Kids may not be interested in this dish. Cook the entire box of pasta and toss with a little butter and parmesan.


Steak Hoagies
Garlic Fries
Berries with Whipped Cream

Steak Hoagies

Leftover slices of London Broil
1 large onion, sliced
2 T. of olive oil
1 small pkg. of mushrooms, sliced
Slices of provolone cheese or shredded mozzarella
Hoagie rolls

Preheat oven to 400˚

Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the onion slices and sauté until they begin to caramelize. Remove the onions from the skillet and add the mushrooms. Once the mushrooms are done put the onions back in the skillet and heat through.

Meanwhile, warm the sliced beef in the microwave. Open the hoagie rolls and place cheese on both sides. Top with slices of beef and onions and mushrooms. Place the sandwiches on a cookie sheet and put in the oven until the cheese has melted and the roll is toasted.

Remove the hoagies and top with mayo, lettuce, sliced tomatoes, or whatever your family likes!

Garlic Fries (adapted from Cooking Light)

3 pounds peeled baking potatoes, cut into 1/4-inch-thick strips
4 teaspoons Canola oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
Cooking spray
2 tablespoons butter
8 garlic cloves, minced
2 T. parsley
2 T. freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400°.
Combine first 3 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag, tossing to coat.
Arrange potatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake at 400° for 50 minutes or until potatoes are tender and golden brown, turning after 20 minutes.
Place butter and garlic in a large nonstick skillet; cook over low heat 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add potatoes, parsley, and cheese to pan; toss to coat. Serve immediately.

***Bonus Recipe***

Kristen’s Baked Beans

This recipe makes 2 - 9x13 trays or 2 - 2 qt. casserole dishes. It freezes great or you can halve it pretty easy if you don't want to make that much.

2 pounds hamburger
1 diced white onion
1 chopped green pepper
4 (21 ounce each) cans of baked beans
1 44 ounce bottle ketchup
2 T mustard
1 cup brown sugar
1 t garlic powder
2 T Worcestershire
1 bottle Hot and Spicy Barbecue Sauce – I prefer KC Masterpiece for this recipe

Brown meat, onion and pepper, and drain. Mix baked beans, ketchup, mustard, brown sugar, garlic powder, Worcestershire and barbecue sauce. Add beef mixture. Place in the casserole dishes, cover, and bake at 300 for 2 to 2 1/2 hours.

And now for the shopping list. As always, double check your pantry, fridge and freezer to see if you already have any of the items listed below. This will reduce your spending and create less waste!


Green Onions
Yellow bell pepper
Red bell pepper
Onion – GE special on Vidalia
Red onion
Garlic – LOTS check out the Garlic Fries recipe
Tomato - GE special on Stem Tomatoes
Rosemary – or you could use dried
Asparagus – GE special
Fresh spinach – 2 or 3 bags – GE special on bagged Spinach
Potatoes – GE special 2 for $4/5lb. bags – do NOT need to buy both to get the special
Salad – GE special on bagged salad
Mushrooms – 2 or 3 small packages
Berries – GE special – buy your favorites
BONUS ITEMS – Green pepper, onion

Parmesan cheese – GE special on DiGiorno

Chili powder
Cajun seasoning
Mayonnaise – Coupon from Tuesday’s section
Canola oil
Olive oil
Cooking spray
Red wine vinegar
Balsamic vinegar
Kosher salt
Dijon Mustard
BONUS ITEMS – Ketchup, BBQ Sauce – Hot and Spicy (coupon), Worcestershire (coupon), Mustard, brown sugar and garlic powder – GE specials on Ketchup, BBQ, Mustard

Canned Goods/Ethnic Foods/Dry Goods
Green chilies
11 oz. can of mandarin oranges
8 oz. can of pineapple tidbits
Farfalle or Bow-tie pasta
BONUS ITEM – 4 (21 oz. cans) baked beans – GE special

Seafood/Meat Case/Butcher
1 lb. of large shrimp – check your freezer from last week
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts – about 1 pound – check freezer
Boneless Top Round – GE special BOGO free!!!
BONUS ITEM – 2 lbs of hamburger

Frozen Foods

Flour tortillas – taco size – Sunday coupon for ChiChi’s brand – may find with salsas
Shredded Monterey Jack cheese
Provolone Slices – GE special on Sargento PLUS coupon in the Sunday paper!!!
Whipped cream

Plain breadcrumbs
Hamburger buns


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