Sunday, May 2, 2010

Weekly menu for the week of May 3

Hey everyone! Welcome to this week’s menu!

Sorry for the delay … It was my big girl’s First Communion today! WOW – how time flies!

This is a great menu! Lots of specials and we are using up ALL of the leftovers in new and tasty ways! It is also Cinco de Mayo this week and thus my taste buds are geared up for a siesta!!!! ENJOY!!!

Additional Specials – GE has Johnsonville fresh sausage on sale AND there is a coupon in Sunday’s paper. Coupon for Pepperoni if you do a traditional pizza night.


Roasted Chicken (double duty)
Wild Rice
Balsamic Glazed Carrots

Roasted Chicken

2 whole chickens – roasting or fryers – depending on the size of your family
2 T. olive oil
Poultry seasoning
4 sprigs of fresh sage and thyme (or 2 t. of dried sage and thyme)
2 onions, quartered

Remove and discard giblets from chicken; rinse under cold water and pat dry. Rub chickens with olive oil. Place onion and fresh herbs inside the cavity of each chicken. (If you are using dried herbs, sprinkle on the outside of the chicken.) Sprinkle with poultry seasoning, salt and pepper.

If desired, tie ends of legs together with heavy string. Lift wing tips up and under chicken. Place chickens, breast side up, on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. (Some people like to cook theirs breast side down. Just be sure to turn it breast side up for the last ½ hour of cooking so they can get nice and browned.) Bake according to the package. Usually, a 4-5lb chicken will cook at 375˚ for 1 hour and 50 minutes or until juices run clear or a meat thermometer inserted into the thigh registers 180˚. Please adjust the cooking time to the weight of your chicken. When in doubt – just wait for the built in timer to pop! This can be found in the breast of the chicken.

Serve one roasted chicken and cover and refrigerate the other for later use.

Prepare the carrots while your chicken is resting – be sure to keep your chicken covered with foil while the carrots are in the oven so it stays warm.

Balsamic Glazed Carrots (This is our favorite way to eat carrots)

1 pkg of baby carrots
Olive or Canola oil
Balsamic Vinegar
Salt and Pepper

Preheat oven to 450˚. Place carrots on jelly-roll pan. Drizzle with oil and vinegar, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Roast in the oven for approximately 20 minutes. The carrots will be slightly glazed and firm, not mushy.


Grilled Portobello Burgers – Make an extra one for later in the week.
Tossed Salad

Grilled Portobello Burgers (adapted from Cooking Light)

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 T. olive oil
1 T. Dijon Mustard
1 garlic clove, minced
1 red bell pepper, cut in half and seeded
4 (4-inch) Portobello mushroom caps
Cooking spray
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 T. of olive oil
4 Kaiser rolls
1/2 cup soft goat cheese or crumbled gorgonzola or feta

Prepare grill to medium-high heat.
Combine balsamic vinegar, olive oil, mustard and garlic in a large bowl. Add bell peppers and Portobello mushrooms; toss gently to coat - can marinate up to 1 hour or not at all. Remove vegetables from vinegar mixture, and discard vinegar mixture. Place bell peppers and mushrooms on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 4 minutes on each side. Remove vegetables from grill; cool slightly. Cut bell peppers into thin strips. Combine bell peppers, basil, salt, and black pepper in a small bowl.
Cut rolls in half horizontally and brush cut sides with olive oil; place on grill, cut side down and grill until just toasted. Arrange 1 mushroom cap on bottom half of each roll; top each serving with about 1/3 cup bell pepper mixture, cheese and top half of roll.


Taco Night

Regular Beef or Fish Tacos

Fish Tacos
Black Bean and Corn Salad

Fish Tacos

¼ cup sour cream
2 T. lime juice
Salt and pepper
¼ small cabbage – red or green – thinly shredded (about 2 ½ cups)
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1 jalapeno, sliced in half lengthwise, ½ of pepper minced
2 T. olive oil
1 lb. tilapia fillets
8 flour tortillas – taco size
½ cup of fresh cilantro leaves

In a large bowl combine sour cream and lime. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside half of the sour cream mixture for serving. Toss cabbage, scallions and minced jalapeno with the remaining mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

In a large non-stick skillet, heat oil and remaining jalapeno half, swirling around to coat the bottom of the pan. The idea is to infuse the oil with a little heat from the pepper. Season fish with salt and pepper. Cook fish in skillet until golden brown on all sides, about 5-6 minutes. It is ok if the fish falls apart because you are going to stuff the tacos with it. Discard the jalapeno.

Warm tortillas in the microwave covered with paper towels or in the oven wrapped in foil. Fill each tortilla with slaw, fish and top each with fresh cilantro. If cilantro is not your thing you could substitute fresh parsley. Drizzle with reserved sour cream mixture. Serve immediately!

***Time Saving Tip**** Buy pre-shredded angel hair cabbage. This will be found near the bagged salads.

Black Bean and Corn Salad

1 can of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can of white corn, drained and rinsed
1 diced avocado
¼ cup of red onion, chopped
1 jalapeno, finely chopped
¼ cup of chopped cilantro
Juice of 2 limes
¼ t. cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours. This can be eaten alone or with tortilla chips.

Regular Tacos

Usually, one pound of beef will feed a family of four. Don’t be afraid of leftovers – we will use them again!


Chicken Taco Salad
Tortilla chips
Fresh Fruit

Chicken Taco Salad (Adapted from Cooking Light)

1/3 cup of chopped fresh cilantro
2/3 cup of light sour cream
1 T. of minced chipotle chili, canned in adobo sauce
1 t. of cumin
1 t. of chili powder
Juice of one lime
Salt to taste

4 cups of shredded romaine lettuce
2 cups of shredded cooked chicken – leftover from Monday night
1 cup of grape or cherry tomatoes cut in half
Leftover Black Bean and corn salad

Combine all of the ingredients of the dressing and let chill for about 1 hour.

Combine the remaining ingredients and toss gently with the dressing. Serve immediately.


Pizza Night

Pizza Night – Any way you like it!

This night is all about your favorite pizza! You can either order in or make your own! Our favorite way to make “homemade” pizzas is to use flatbread. We buy our flatbread at Costco. It comes in a double pack – they call it “pocketless pita bread.” We keep it in the freezer and pull out however many we need. They are the perfect size for individual pizzas!

Here are some ways to build your pizza:

Traditional toppings – pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms, onions, peppers, etc. – you get the idea!

Leftover Mushroom Pizza:
- bush the flatbread with olive oil, minced garlic and sprinkle oregano on top. Cover with mozzarella cheese and bake in a 450˚ oven until the crust is crisp and the cheese has melted – about 8-10 minutes.
- top with leftover sautéed mushrooms, sliced caramelized onions, roasted red peppers, sliced, (in the jar is fine) and sprinkle crumbled goat cheese or feta.
- after you have topped your pizza, place it back in the oven and broil until the toppings are warmed and the cheese begins to melt.

Leftover Taco Pizza:
- brush the flatbread with olive oil, minced garlic, and sprinkle chili powder on top. Cover with Monterey Jack/Cheddar blend cheese and bake in a 450˚ oven until the crust is crisp and the cheese has melted – about 8-10 minutes.
- Top with leftover taco meat. Sprinkle additional cheese on top and place under the broiler until the cheese has melted and the toppings are warmed.
Dollop with salsa and sour cream and fresh cilantro if you have some on hand. Add shredded lettuce and sliced olives.

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!


Baby Carrots – GE special
2 onions
Red bell pepper
Portobello mushroom caps – GE special
Fresh basil
4 limes – GE special
Small red or green cabbage – look for the shredded cabbage in the bag – it may be more efficient
Green onions – GE special
2 Jalapenos
Fresh cilantro
Avocado - GE special
Red onions
Fresh fruit – GE special on strawberries and blackberries
Romaine lettuce
Grape or cherry tomatoes

Kaiser rolls
Goat cheese or gorgonzola cheese
Pizza crust or flatbread

Olive oil
Poultry seasoning
Sage – could use fresh
Thyme – could use fresh
Balsamic vinegar
Dijon mustard
Cayenne pepper
Chili powder

Canned Goods/Ethnic Foods/Dry Goods
Wild Rice
Black beans – GE special on GE brand
White corn
Taco seasoning – if making regular tacos – GE special on Ortega
Chipotle chili in adobo sauce
Taco shells – GE special on Ortega

Seafood/Meat Case/Butcher
2 whole, fryer or roasting chickens
1 lb. of Tilapia or ground beef – depends on which tacos – GE special on Tilapia – leftover ground beef from last week

Frozen Foods

Sour cream – GE special on Breakstone’s
Flour tortillas – taco size – GE special on Mission
Cheddar cheese – GE special on Kraft


Tortilla chips

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!


  1. Great menu! Love your blog! Congrats on your daughter's first communion!

  2. Thanks for the great tips and recipes above and congrats on your daughter's first communion! :-)

    I noticed that you use flatbread for your pizzas although were not sure if you ever tried using tortillas instead. We started to use them for our homemade pizzas and they have been working perfect. They are low calorie, healthy and cook fast! :-)

    Not sure if you ever tried La Tortilla Factory Low Carb/High Fiber Tortillas. They are only 80cals per tortilla large size and 50cals per tortilla small size - they also taste great!

    They are a great size for pizza although we use the wraps for all of my meals too – breakfast (egg burritos), lunch (all types of wraps such as turkey, veggie..etc) and dinner although they can be also used for snacks (you just have to get creative).

    They are at allot of local supermarkets now although I also heard that some COSTCO are now selling them too. If you can't find them at either one you can also order them directly from La Tortilla online.

    If you are interested, we list one of my favorite recipes (Italian Veggie Pizza) on our site.

    Hope you like the recipe. Thanks for great post and forward to reading more!

  3. Thanks!! We have used tortillas as pizza crust but we end up wrapping up the pizza in a sort-of calzone kinda way. We will have to try the La Tortilla Facotry brand!! They sound good and healthy!!!