Friday, August 3, 2012

Eating at Home Challenge

 One"pot" dinner ALL from our CSA!!!!  Eggs, peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, garlic, and zucchini
So I gave ourselves... well really myself.... a challenge this week!  To eat at home EVERY meal Monday through Friday!  Yep, a whole 5 days of only eating at home!  That's 15 meals!  For some, this might not sound like that much of a challenge but for me, the Queen of eating out, it was a big deal!  I knew it could be done because I gladly accept self-inflicted challenges!
couscous cooked in veggie broth with black beans, tomatoes, leeks, corn, and cumin
Along with the main challenge of eating at home, I was determined to not make my usual dinner items every night!  My fall back dinner is veggie spaghetti!!!  I also have that on hand in the freezer!  I take all of my veggies that are about to go back and cook them all day in some spaghetti sauce and then freeze it in small batches!  A perfect go to and a great one pot dinner where the kids get all of their veggies!  I'm proud to say we didn't eat any veggie pasta this week!!!!
Nope!  I was determined to go "out on a ledge" and try new things!!!!  And guess what?!?!  They were all a success!!!!  Everyone loved everything!!!!  See, usually when I serve something....even if it is just to my family and especially when it is to company.... I give a disclaimer that the dinner is probably not going to be great or I downplay it to some degree.... crazy, I know!  Not this week!  Nope, see how excited Ethan is to be eating this yummy veggie couscous with a Mexican spin.... I was this excited every night to put dinner on the table!
Not only did I come up with new recipes... I tried to come up with fun ways to serve the food!!!!  The kids are big fans of "make your own taco" night so one night we had make your own salad night!!!!  And let me just say, this salad was AMAZING!!!!!  I baked salmon that I had covered in dijon mustard to be placed on the bed of lettuce that I had mixed with a salsa salad dressing (1 cup salsa, 1 tbs olive oil, and lime juice) and homemade croutons!  Then I had bell peppers, tomatoes, cilantro, leeks, and avocados cut up so each kid could mix in what else they wanted!  WOW!!!!  A great salmon salad!!!!
 In addition to all of the super yummy dinners, we had quick breakfasts (the kids are on a cereal kick) and healthy lunches of pb &j or turkey and cheese and veggies and fruit!  And you know what, it was so easy and so fun!!!!  A lot less stressful that taking the crew out to eat!  Grant it, I was constantly cleaning up the kitchen.... doing more dishes than I ever have... but really, it was pretty easy!  The kids played or got in on the cooking fun and it was so fun to see our end result!  The kids had fun eating the dinners especially when they got to help make it!
 And this growing boy LOVED all of the food!!!  He usually got a pre-sample as I tried to finish up dinner and hold him off until Brad got home!  So, at the end of the week, I'm proud to say we successfully completed our Eating at Home Challenge with flying colors!  And at the end of the week I have SO much more confidence in the kitchen!!  I'm looking forward to trying out new recipes and re-making some of our big hits from this week!!!!  I'm ready for a new cooking challenge!!!!

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