fall meal plan ~ week 9

wow, i can’t believe october is almost over! yay for this nice spell of sunshine tho (hope i didn’t just jinx it!) fingers crossed it’s clear on tuesday for all the trick-or-treaters! you can’t just eat candy all week tho… here are some yummy recipes to counteract all the sugar. (ps, i will take all your unwanted black liquorice.)

rainbow thai noodle salad with marinated chicken & peanut sauce
i know i’m a broken record when it comes to noodles and how much i love them but holy cow, this salad is delicious!! hello, lovely peanut sauce!! rice noodles, carrots, red pepper, red cabbage, spinach, fresh herbs and some easy marinated chicken. did i mention the peanut sauce??

rainbow thai noodle salad

aunt nel’s meatloaf 
welcome to my tradition of serving meatloaf for hallowe’en. it’s a long story, but for me it’s just not halloween without meatloaf. and mashed potatoes. and green beans. now we can go trick or treating! (yumm! just look at that sauce!!)

meatloaf

balsamic-glazed salmon
i love salmon but it can get boring pretty quick, amirite? this is a super flavourful way to serve it: balsamic vinegar, garlic, honey & mustard get slathered on before it bakes in the oven. on the table in about a half an hour (altho i strongly recommend roasting up some brussels and caulis to go with!)

balsamic salmon

roasted cauliflower, farro & arugula salad with lemony tahini dressing
can’t get over how delicious this salad is! roasted cauli, roasted red pepper, farro (my new fave grain!) chickpeas, arugula & a handful of fresh herbs tossed with the yummiest lemon tahini dressing!

roasted cauliflower and farro salad

chicken & basmati roti wraps
yummy marinated chicken, herbed basmati rice and a curried raita sauce, all rolled up in a roti wrap. easy peasy and sooo tasty!

chicken and basmati roti wraps

click here for the full recipes

click here for the grocery list

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fall meal plan ~ week 8

well, it’s been a very busy week in this house so how’s about some easy albeit tasty meals to throw on the table?

roasted salmon with pumpkin seed-cilantro pesto
this is ridiculously simple but so dang yummy. you can never go wrong with classic roasted salmon. and if there were a pesto contest, i’m pretty sure team pumpkin seed-cilantro would beat team basil-pine nut. just sayin’

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roasted corn & black bean salsa quesadillas
these quesadillas were inspired by the amazing rebar restaurant in victoria. loaded with roasted corn, black beans, fresh salsa and more of that amazing pumpkin seed-cilantro pesto, plus two kinds of cheese!

cornquesadillas

chicken lo mein
i love me some noodles. never get sick of ’em, always looking for more reasons to eat ’em. this is supposed to be pork lo mein but i was fancying chicken so did a swap. pretty easy and lotsa flavour.

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chickpea dumplings in curry tomato sauce
holy comfort food! these dumplings are basically onion bhaji balls! easy peasy and sooo tasty, especially smothered in that yummy tomato sauce. another excuse to roast some cauliflower to serve on the side.

dumplings

meatball subs with gruyere and caramelised onions
a spectacular way to end the week. tender italian meatballs, thick tomato sauce, gorgeous caramelised onions and melty gruyere cheese popped into a sub bun and broiled till toasty. yes please! now please let the sun come back out!

subs

click here for the full recipes

click here for the grocery list

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fall meal plan ~ week 7

we just got back from new york where the temperatures were about 10-15 degrees warmer than here in vancouver and not only that, but we came home to a house with no heat whatsoever due to the fact that our furnace konked out in the summer. suffice it to say, we’ve been freeeeeezing! give me all the warm and yummy foods comfort foods please!

bangers & mash
classic pub food. english sausages plus a lightened up potato-cauliflower mash with the best onion pan gravy.

bangers

lentils with fennel & halloumi
easily one of my fave vegetarian meals. roasted sweet potatoes, roasted fennel, and halloumi. yes, halloumi. served with lentils all tossed in a delicious balsamic vinaigrette.

lentils fennel and halloumi

thai halibut with peppers & onions
halibut roasted with onions & peppers and a lovely thai-style coconut sauce. served with a zingy cucumber salad and some jasmine rice.

thai halibut

butter chicken + chana masala
this is better-than-takeaway butter chicken, my friend. served with warm and spicy chana masala. all you need is rice and naan!

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fresh ricotta & red onion pizza
okay so yes this features both homemade dough and homemade ricotta but they really are both very easy to make at home. it’s all about the timing: both only take about 15 minutes of active time the evening before, and the results are spectacular!

ricotta & red onion pizza

click here for the full recipes

click here for the grocery list

fall meal plan ~ week 6

nothing like a big heavy meal to start the week, amirite? no big deal — the rest of the week is way lighter. now you can stuff your face with all the mashed potatoes, stuffing and pie you want, guilt-free. you’re welcome.

thanksgiving dinner
roast turkey breast with two stuffings & gravy, plus all the fixins: cream cheese mashed potatoes, balsamic glazed yams, thyme-scented carrots & onions and a hearty kale salad. plus homemade cranberry sauce and two kinds of pie!

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ricotta stuffed shells with roasted tomato sauce
super cheesy stuffed pasta shells with homemade roasted cherry tomato & basil sauce. holy yummy!!

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flank steak with horseradish sauce
another super easy meal. the secret is the overnight marinade, then next day whip up the amazing horseradish sauce while the grill/broiler is heating up. i like to add nugget potatoes & a creamy cucumber salad to go with.

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kale, black bean & avocado burrito bowls
after all the heavy eating this week, this is the perfect detox bowl: zingy kale salad, with spicy black beans, creamy avocado salsa verde and fresh tomato on some hearty brown rice.

burrito

coconut shrimp noodle bowls
this is one of those one-pan wonders. quick stir fry of shrimp and then everything else — noodles, broth, veggies, herbs, hot sauce — goes in one pan; boil, simmer, season, eat. so good, so easy, so fast!

noods

click here for the thanksgiving recipes

click here for the rest of this week’s recipes

click here for the grocery list (to keep things simple, the ingredients for thanksgiving are not included in this list)

thanksgiving is a week away!

so this might be a touchy subject: who thinks that the turkey is the worst part of the thanksgiving meal? the breast meat is often dry, does anyone actually eat the legs, and you’ve got more leftovers than you know what to do with (turkey curry anyone?)

one thanksgiving, many years ago, daunted by memories of a giant leftover turkey carcass and its juices running all over our counter, we decided to roast a turkey breast. with two kinds of stuffing even. it cooks in substantially less time than a traditional turkey (we’re talking 90 minutes here), it looks beautiful, and we think it tastes way better. we’ve never roasted a whole turkey since. (ps, it makes for dang good sandwiches the next day too.)

herb & mustard turkey breast with two stuffings & green onion gravy
the turkey breast gets pounded flat and filled with both a sausage stuffing and a bread stuffing and then smeared in an herb & mustard butter rub before it goes in the oven. save those gorgeous drippings for the green onion gravy!

turkey
so many side dishes
before we went the stuffed turkey breast route, these dishes were the best part of the meal: cream cheese & sour cream mashed potatoesroasted balsamic sweet potatoeszesty carrots & onions and a kale salad with pinenuts, cranberries and parmesan. of course you can’t forget the spiced cranberry sauce!

pumpkin pie & pecan pie
years ago, i used to watch david letterman and loved the thanksgiving segments with his mum wherein he’d guess which two pies she’d made that year. two pies! one pie is exciting but she always made two. well no one needs to guess which pies i make every year… pumpkin and pecan!

pie

click here for the full recipes

fall meal plan ~ week 5

i know i was lamenting the end of summer and the dreary weather that inevitably follows but whatever. i’m over it. now i’m all about the fall food!

oktoberfest
you do not have to be of german descent to celebrate oktoberfest! you don’t even have to like beer! trust me, i hate beer and this is one of my favourite holiday meals: bratwurst with apples & sauerkraut, german potatoes & a cucumber-dill salad

brats

falafel burgers
amazing vegetarian burgers made from chickpeas, cauliflower, quinoa and a whole bunch of fresh herbs & spices. you can never go wrong with traditional greek salad on the side.

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halibut with sweet potato fries & lime
this is probably one of the easiest meals i make. super simple, super quick, super delicious. everything gets roasted in the oven and then just squeeze a bunch of lime on top and scatter some chopped flat leaf parsley.

halibut

lentil & chickpea salad with feta & tahini
crikey this is tasty!! so many yummy flavours going on in here — toasted cumin & coriander, lemon, tahini, red onion, cilantro, and of course feta! there are a few steps for sure but the end result is out of this world.

puy

pesto chicken lasagne
a departure from the usual lasagne with meat sauce, this spectacular white version features chopped chicken breast, pesto sauce, all the cheeses (ricotta, mozzerella & parm!) and a lovely béchamel sauce.

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click here for the full recipes

click here for the grocery list