Follow our family's weekly vegetarian menu, access recipes, and download weekly grocery lists, during my quest to get our weekly grocery bill down to $70 per week, while supporting local agriculture and eating healthy organic foods!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Menu for Nov. 30 - Dec. 7

Click here for 11/30 Shopping list. I spent a total of $105 on groceries this week. I bought quite a few non-essentials..Like, chocolate chips to make cookies, organic apple juice, and pop corn. However, I already had many of the ingredients needed for this week's menu. I am sure if you buy everything needed for this week's menu it will cost about $120-130. I also made some concessions, and did not buy the umeboshi vinegar, mainly b/c I could not find it. I was going to buy Marin instead, but I did not feel like spending $7.99 on the  bottle. So in the hummus, I will probably use a sweet cooking wine I already have.

Monday: Black Bean Enchiladas
                1/2 lb of cooked black beans
                1/2 bag of frozen mixed veggies
                 1/2 cup cilantro leaves (optional)
                1 14 oz can of chipotle diced tomatoes
                2-4 oz chipotle peppers (reserve and freeze adobo sauce for future recipes)
                5 tortillas*
                2/3 cup of cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine beans, mixed veggies and cilantro leaves. Mix well. Fill tortillas with cheese and bean mix. Fold and place in baking dish. Combine tomatoes and chipotle pepper in a separate bowl and spoon over enchiladas. Bake for 20 mins.

~ This is one of our favorites, and we eat it quite frequently. It is cheap and easy.

Tuesday: Red Beans in Chili Sauce with Corn Bread
                Red Beans-Recipe from Romancing the Bean pg 61.
                Corn bread-Recipe from Romancing the Bean pg 101

~The corn Bread was so moist and delicious! The red beans set my tongue on fire!! They were really tasty, but I had to have a glass of water and apple juice close by! We just realized that I bought really authentic chili powder.I got it at Fiesta Mart... It is significantly spicier than any chili powder I have ever had. I will need use it sparingly from now on! The fresh sweet corn in it threw me for a loop, at first. It was still very crunchy, almost as if it was not cooked at all, but the more I ate, the more I liked the contrast with the rest of the dish. This ingredient is optional. I might skip it next time. I have never had tomatillos. They also surprised me, with a sweet flavor, that is really nice in the chili sauce. The recipe calls for the tomatillos to be quartered, but I think this leaves them too big, to meld well in the chili sauce. I think they would give the sauce a better infusion if they were diced. 

Wednesday:  Kamut with Root Vegetables and Cranberries
          -Recipe from Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker pg. 114  

~ I added Chickpeas to the recipe to ensure there was a protein source in the meal. I also added rutabaga. These additions really sucked the liquid out of the stew. I had to add another 2 1/2 cups of water the last couple hours of slow cooking. This recipe was a first for me all around. The only ingredient I have ever eaten was the carrot. It was extremely easy to make, and came out wonderfully. It had a very mild sweetness to it. The cranberries really make this dish. It was the perfect meal for a cold November evening. Very comforting and filling!

Thursday: Fajitas
                 1 red pepper, sliced
                 1 package Lightlife Chkn' style strips (any chicken alternative works, but this brand tastes best!)
                 1 green pepper, sliced
                 1 lg. red onion, sliced
                 1 lime juiced
                 1 TBLS chili powder
                 1 TBLS cheyenne pepper
                 1 avocado, sliced
                 1 roma tomato, diced
                 6-10 tortillas*
                 2/3 cups cheese (optional)

Combine peppers, onions, and chik'n style strips in a frying pan or wok. Squeeze lime over mixture and saute over medium to low heat. Add cheyenne pepper and chili powder to taste. I honestly don't ever measure it, and I really prefer the spicier end. If you do not like the spices start with 1/2 tsp and work up. Taste as you go. Once mixture is soft and well cooked, add all other ingredients to tortillas.

~A lot of these ingredients are optional. The tomatoes, avocado, and cheese can be left out for dietary reasons, seasonal restrictions, or budget constraints. The avocado really contrast well with the fajitas, so if you can get it, I recommend it! This is really one of our absolute favorites! I made this up many years ago, before I was vegetarian, and then just replaced the meat with meat substitutes. My husband actually prefers the meat alternative to actual chicken. (He is not vegetarian.) This is a very quick recipe, but that does not diminish the flavor at all!

Friday: Pesto-infused white bean and sun-dried tomato stew
      -Recipe from Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker pg. 71

~This was absolutely amazing! It was a good  hearty stew full of flavor. I think I will put double the sun-dried tomatoes next time. I also added orzo a couple hours before it was done slow cooking. I like to have a protein, vegetable, and whole grain for each of our meals. It complimented the recipe quite well. Mira (our 16 month old) loved this one as well.

Saturday: Hot pepper hummus on pita bread with marinated beets
       Hot Pepper Hummus- recipe from Romancing the Bean pg. 120
       Marinated Beets-  get the recipe here

~The hot pepper hummus was a bit too salty for my taste. I eat very little salt though. My husband (who loves salt) thought the hummus was really good. I would like to try it again sometime using the umeboshi vinegar. The recipe called for salt in place of the umeboshi vinegar.. which is definitely why it was so salty.

Sunday: Kimchi Soup- get the recipe here

~I have only ever had my sister's kimchi soup and prepackaged kimchi soup. While I still think I like my sister's soup the best, this recipe was very good. We really enjoyed it and it was very straight forward. We will definitely be having this again!

Splurging:  Libby's pumpkin cranberry bread-  get the recipe here

~I really lucked out when i found this recipe. As a first crack at making pumpkin bread, I could not have asked for a simpler or more satisfying recipe. It has the perfect amount of pumpkin pie spice, and the cranberries and orange juice give it a mild and delicious tang. This is not one of those bland, leave you wanting pumpkin bread recipes. It is excellent! Strangely, the 30 oz can of name brand pumpkin pie filling was 30 cents cheaper than the store brand 15 oz can.  Which is great! I was able to freeze enough for another loaf, and an oatmeal recipe I intend to try next week.

Breakfast: Apple cinnamon oatmeal - get the recipe here

~We ate this several times this week. I love it! It is the perfect cold morning breakfast. I grew up eating  prepackaged sweetened oatmeal. This recipe is not sweet at all. I adjust the recipe to be 2 parts liquid and 1 part oats. I then make the liquid equal parts water and apple juice. This gives the recipe more sweetness, but not too sweet. 

* Whole Wheat Flax Tortillas
Servings: 10
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
6 TBL ground flax (You can use 2 TBL of butter  or shortening instead of flax seed. If you do decrease water by 1/2 cup.)
2/3 +1/2 cups warm water

1.)Combine all dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Then gradually
add the water while mixing. Mix into a dough, cover and let rise for
20 mins.
2.) Roll into a rope and divide into 10 equal pieces.
3.) On a lightly floured surface knead each piece into a flat circle
and use rolling pin to make tortilla.
4.) Cook on stove top on medium to low heat. Tortilla will bubble and
then flip.


  1. Awesome recipes! They look healthy and yummy! I am impressed by the fact that you make your own healthy tortillas!!

  2. Those tortillas are delicious. Suki told me recently you could substitute ground flax seed for butter in baking. I thought I would try it out.. In just about everything. :)It makes cookies a little dry, but soft. It was amazing in the tortillas! They are so soft and moist!

  3. I didn't master the tortilla talent yet. However, Friday's meal was wonderful- thanks Jeannette! I couldn't find sun dried tomatoes, so those were omitted, and we added orzo like you mentioned. Nicole