I'm going to dip my toe very gently back into menu planning.
Planning meals has become a bit of a nightmare around here since Robert started his new job. He started at a time when a ton of new contracts had just come in, which meant a lot of overtime and neither of us having the first clue what time he would be home. Plus he hates to reheat food, but I don't blame him there, nuked food isn't great.
This means that since the beginning of the year I have been cooking our evening meal in two batches, the first for Chloe and I and then again later for Robert. The child can't exactly wait until Robert gets home which is more often than not after 8pm and she's fast asleep by that stage. Needless to say I've been cooking a lot of quickie meals lately.
In the last week or so, I have cooked a few things in the crockpot, now I know that crockpot food is quite often associated with Winter food and while the sun has been shining here for the past couple of weeks of the temperature is still in single digits so I figure I can get away with it.
I've found myself waking at around 5.30am for the past week or so and my body isn't having any trouble with it at all so I might as well make use of the time in the mornings to prepare an evening meal and give myself a break from cooking twice every night.
I've plundered the archives over at A Year of Slow Cooking and I'll be making as much use as humanly possible of my crockpot this week and we'll see how it goes.
Monday Balsamic Chicken with Spring Vegetables Chloe has recently developed a love of all things pickled, her favourites being a jar of baby onions in balsamic vinegar so I don't see us having any issues with this dish.
Tuesday Boston Baked Beans and Baked Potatoes Yes it seems you can actually bake potatoes in a crockpot, however because I'll be home in the afternoon I'll just through them all in the oven and bake them normally and then pop a couple in the crockpot on low for Robert. I made a huge batch of the beans on Sunday and these really do reheat brilliantly, in fact they're even better reheated than they are the first time around.
Wednesday Chloe will be at my mum's house for dinner this evening so I only have myself and Robert to worry about and we can both have green chili cheese burgers once he's home. Don't laugh but I saw them on Bobby Flay's Throwdown, made them once and have been addicted ever since. However if you like the idea that I'm making something bright green because it's St Paddy's day then I'm happy to go along with it:)
Thursday Cream Cheese Chicken we've had it before and love it, but Chloe refuses to accept that there is cheese in a meal until there is cheddar in a meal so we always add a couple of handfuls for her.
Friday Rotisserie Style Chicken with steamed veg or salad. This comes with the benefit of leftovers for lunch on Saturday.
Saturday Pho Robert loves it and we're planning on getting stuck into the garden so we can dip into this as needed, plus I'm guessing that leftover chicken will stretch beyond just lunch so there'll be sandwiches for any starvos.
Sunday Pulled Pork I won't add the Tabasco in while the food is cooking though, I won't miss it but if Robert does I can add it to his portion at the end.
Hopefully doing this will give me more time to bake in the afternoons because that has slid lately too and I'd like to make some of my own bread this week.