Well, I’ve done something I’ve never done before.
I planned our menu for the entire month of January.
What were you thinking- something really out there like gluing paper to a floor or stabbing a vole/mouse with a pitchfork? Oh, wait- I have done those things. But I’ve never planned a whole month of meals, believe it or not.
I know some folks regularly plan the whole month, but it’s not something I was ever even remotely interested it- one week at a time was about all I could handle. Plus I feel it really allows me to plan for what I’ve got in the fridge- produce and dairy and such – that needs to be used. This is especially true as the garden comes in- I plan our meals based on what I know is in season.
Oh- and speaking of that- I haven’t forgotten the January installment of “Seasonal Cooking.” I just got so caught up in Top Ten lists and 2012 goals that I didn’t have room left for the seasonal post. Look for it this week, ’cause figuring out how to cook seasonally in January is, um, very interesting to say the least.
Anyway…I planned the whole month of January because I decided it was the only way I could be serious about my January goal to “eat from the pantry” in order to get our food budget back in the black after finishing both November and December in the red. I took inventory of what was available in our freezer and canning pantry and made meals based around those things. I will fill in with weekly produce and fresh things.
Seeing it written out has given me confidence that we can do this and still have varied meals that we enjoy- we will not be eating only beans and rice.
Though they are making an appearance.
Monday- Haystacks (seasoned beans over chips topped with lettuce, tomato, onions, and cheese), sauteed corn (from frozen garden produce)
Thursday-Spaghetti Pie (leftover fr. freezer), green salad
Friday- Dinner out & movie (It might crack you up to know the dinner will be Subway – using a gift card from Christmas- and the movie will be at our excellent second-run theater that charges just $2.00 on Fridays, ha! But “dinner and a movie” sounds so much nicer, so just forget I said anything…)
Saturday- Quick Homemade pizza
Sunday- Hoisin Salmon (patties) on Soba Noodles with green beans