Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Cooking after the holidays

We went visiting friends across country for their best New Year's Eve party ever. Great company, and great food. They were making assemble-your-won pizzas for a crowd, at least half of whom were vegetarian.

I arrived home lazy, unused to making dinner.

--I made that Indian tomato curry with Pulao Rice the day I got back, since it's a pantry meal.
--Then sloppy egg joes: fried eggs on a whole wheat buns, with sloppy joe sauce.
--then vegetarian enchilada casserole: zucchini, mushrooms and corn, layered between tortillas with jack cheese and canned green enchilada sauce.
--The swedish meatballs, meatballs optional. I should have come up with some kind of vegetarian meatless ball, but I have never solved that problem. Nevertheless everyone loves egg noodles with swedish cream sauce, and lingonberry jam. The sauce was from a packet from IKEA.
--running out of ideas, I made pasta wheels with marinara sauce. Tried to get the sometimes meat eaters to finish off yesterday's meatballs that no one loved.

I've got to come up with dinner for tonight and tomorrow. It all feels like pulling a full sled up a mountain. And since I've not come up with something, now tonight's shop, prep and serve is down to the hour between picking up little kid from her class, and taking the big kids to Young Women and scouts.

What are you making? And what's your go-to when you've got to come up with the no-idea dinner quick?


Heffalump said...

Homemade macaroni and cheese is my main go to meal. Also, taco soup (which I use ground meat in, but can certainly be left out). Taco salad is a great one, especially for families that have some meat eaters. I have some of those tortilla bakers to make the tortillas into bowls and then we add the salad and everyone picks what they want to put in their salad. We have salsa, sour cream, salad, refried beans, kidney and/or black beans, taco meat, cheese, tortilla chips, and the list goes on. If the boys don't want to eat it as a salad, I just forego cooking their bowls and they make a quick homemade burrito instead.
We also love McMuffin type breakfast sandwiches. Use English muffins or bagels, put fried or scrambled eggs and cheese on and go to it! I make the eggs like an omelette and then slice it up like a pizza and put a slice on each sandwich (keeps the eggs from falling apart).
Quesadillas are another great and quick meal. You can spread refritos on a tortilla, sprinkle it with cheese and top with another tortilla. Heat it through until crispy (both sides) in a lightly oiled pan and top it with sour cream, salsa, salad, etc.

Scarehaircare said...

Homemade Macaroni with Four Cheeses from "The Food You Crave" (made with butternut squash) and a salad.

Curried cauliflower and lentils from over rice or coconut rice.

If you eat fish, we love quesadillas made with salmon.

A pantry meal for us is Crispy Potatoes with Green Beans and Eggs. A hash that goes together quickly and tastes great with ketchup or BBQ sauce. Sometimes I will sub sweet potatoes for some or all of the Idahos. I shall post that recipe soon.

I've got a to-try list that I'm pulling out to plan menus for next week.

Johnna said...

Heffalump and Scarehaircare, I love your ideas! You're carrying me into next week, and I think I need carried about now.

and wow, Ellie Krieger! She looks like she could be my new Jane Brody. I think I need to acquire "The Food You Crave."

I ended up making a subway sandwich run. I picked up some ingredients on the way back from seminary to make a potato bar.

I haven't made a mac and cheese yet that my kids approve of. They love that from-powder stuff in the blue box. I have a lot of pasta wagon wheels leftover from Wednesday's dinner.