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Monday, September 22, 2008

Menu Plan Monday: Tried & True

This week MPM has a theme: Family Favorites. I have posted a menu with a couple of our family favorites as well as some new things. The starred recipes are our family favorites recipes.

We had quite a few winners last week. The lima beans were a hit, as was the oven fried chicken (I used panko, and would drizzle butter over the whole thing next time), barbecue pinquitos, jalapeno corn pudding and the cucumber-tomato salad. We used vegetables from our garden for almost all of the slow cooker ratatouille, and we added the ubiquitous crookneck squash to the mix, everyone loved it, and it smelled so good. A hint I learned from the comments section of that jalapeno corn pudding was to put a couple of layers of paper toweling across the top of the crockpot, taut, under the lid, so it absorbs some of the liquid. That worked nicely for the ratatouille as well.

Yesterday after church we went to the fair, since someone gave us free tickets. We try to avoid this fair, just because it is so commercialized, crowded and crass. However, since we missed our small local fair and our county fair, which we normally take the children to, this year, and the tickets were free, we went. There is nothing like a fair to make you feel thin and normal. We brought snacks, looked at the exhibits (which were few, sadly) and saw a few shows and demonstrations. We did not go on the rides this year. We also didn't eat there, because the prices are so awful for food that we can make better, so we're having a fair food night this week.

Going to the fair meant that my dinner plans changed considerably. We went to Burger King. My body is rejecting that meal as unrighteous. I consumed over my normal daily caloric load in one meal. It is only because of nursing a baby that it is within a normal calorie range for me. But still in one meal. And a particularly craptastic one at that. I used to be able to eat food like that, but my body is just not used to it. I was hungry, so I ate it, but, we will not be revisiting that for some time. Even Rich is not happy with that meal and is only eating fruit and vegetables until dinner tonight. We only spent $22.34 with coupons, though.
If you want a recipe, ask and I will provide it as soon as I can.
What is on your menu this week?

Funnel Cake

Oil/Fat for frying
1 C plus 2 Tbsp flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
3/4 C milk
1 large egg
1 tsp almond extract

Mix everything but the oil with a fork. Heat about 3/4" oil in a heavy skillet. Use a 1/2" spout funnel, close with your finger and pour in about 1/4 C batter. Over the hot oil, remove your finger and let batter run out in a spiral about 6" in diameter. Fry until golden, turning once (they fry very quickly, maybe 2 minutes, tops). Drain on paper towels, keep warm in oven. Repeat with remaining batter, stirring before pouring. Sprinkle funnel cakes with powdered sugar, you can also put some strawberry jam in a squeeze bottle and squeeze that over the cakes and top with whipped cream, go nuts!

Lemon-Cranberry Scones

2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons cold butter
1/2 cup dried cranberries
Zest of one lemon
2/3 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons milk

Preheat oven to 425. Prepare one pan for baking.

Mix dry ingredients in a bowl. Cut in butter, I like to rub the pieces of butter through the flour with my fingers, but you may also use a food processor, until mixture resembles large peas and cornmeal. Add cranberries and lemon zest and mix together. Stir in buttermilk until dough holds together. Knead lightly on a floured surface. Pat dough into a circle about eight inches across and cut into eight wedges, like a pie. Place them two inches apart on baking pan. Brush tops with milk and bake for 15 minutes, or until lightly browned.

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I'm so glad you liked the ratatouille! I'm going to bookmark that Zucchini Galette. Have a good week.

The Italian sausage skillet & Moroccan Chicken sound really good. Love the idea of "Fair Food" night.
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