As you can see from my lack of a menu post last week, my summer is getting out of hand. One would think that with my kids being at Kids College for the entire week that I should be able to get back on track. Alas, I don’t believe that this will be the case because Peyton’s birthday is tomorrow and she expects a birthday dinner of crab legs and a cake even though her party isn’t until Saturday, which will require another cake (yes, I’m aware that she is spoiled). Her party will be a “camping at the lake” themed pool party complete with a camper, boat dock, and boats. I can’t wait to share the pictures! And my mother-in-law found the greatest cake design. I just hope that I can pull it off. Keep your fingers crossed. Anyway, we are still drowning in garden vegetables so here is the menu for the week.
Monday: Sausage rigatoni with garden vegetable sauce. This one is definitely a keeper! Cook 1 box of rigatoni, saving some cooking water when you drain it. Saute a pound of bulk sausage and remove from pan. Add 1 diced onion, medium squash, and medium zucchini (about 1/2″ cubes for squash and zucchini, mince onion smaller). Saute until onion becomes translucent but squash and zucchini are still crisp; add about 2 cups of diced tomatoes. Season with Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Cook until tomatoes start to break down but squash and zucchini are still crisp. Add sausage and pasta back into pan; add pasta water if it looks too dry. Top with freshly sliced basil and Parmesan cheese.
Tuesday: Peyton’s Birthday Choice! Crab legs, potatoes with stinky cheese, and cucumbers in Honey-mustard dressing, and of course birthday cake. I know that cucumbers dressed with honey-mustard sounds weird but trust me, they’re really good, and we’re looking for new ways to eat our over-abundance of cucumbers. I blogged about the potatoes in March, check out the menu for Friday for directions. For some reason my girls love these potatoes with crab. Here’s a good hint for heating up frozen crab legs: We find that they become water-logged and difficult to crack open if we heat them with steam or boiling water, but if you just place them on your grill for 5-10 minutes they warm up perfectly.
Wednesday: Venison and veggie fajitas with pico de gallo, cojita cheese, and avocado. Beef or chicken would work well here too; just slice thinly and season with chile powder, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper. If you use venison it is better to let it marinate in the refrigerator for a day or two, but chicken or beef only need a few hours. I’m adding thin strips of zucchini to my peppers and onions because I’m drowning in them. I think Dave and I could just eat veggie fajitas (with the right seasoning) and be happy but my girls want some MEAT!
Thursday: Roasted tomatoes and eggplant stuffed with sausage/veggie stuffing. It’s a one-stop meal: meat, carbs, and vegetables all in one dish. Brown 1 lb. of bulk sausage or chorizo in a skillet then remove. Add a medium onion and a small zucchini finely diced, season with salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning. Cut Japanese eggplant and tomatoes in half and scoop out the insides (you may also mince up what you removed and add to the skillet). Once the veggies are done, add sausage back in. Add enough bread crumbs to bind everything together (and a handful of shredded Parmesan for flavor). Stuff tomatoes and eggplant halves and grill on medium high for about 25 – 30 minutes. See here for complete instructions.
Friday: Fried chicken salads with Honey-mustard or Ranch dressing. Today is the day before Peyton’s party and I’m sure that there will be a million things to do, so I’m stopping by our favorite fried chicken place for chicken tenders and making a huge salad to serve them on. Honey-mustard dressing is my favorite on a fried chicken salad but my girls tend to disagree. I’m sure I’ll use up some more cucumbers and tomatoes with this meal too.