Author Topic: Mustachian meal rotations?  (Read 2926 times)

lhamo

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Mustachian meal rotations?
« on: October 14, 2018, 07:27:09 PM »
I like to cook, but often find myself just sinking into a rut of recipes I know work well/are easy to make.  Wondering if I can get some inspiration from the menu rotations used by fellow Mustachians.

Here are our go-to meals that are on a roughly 2-3 week rotation schedule:

Pasta (use frozen beef meatballs from Costco and jarred sauce)

Beef burritos (I make a large pot of shredded beef in the crockpot (a chuck roast + a jar of salsa, typically) that makes enough for about 3 burrito meals)

Costco roast chicken + carrots/cucumber and hummus

Asian chicken noodles -- stir fry some cabbage and mushrooms with garlic/ginger and the leftover costco chicken chopped up, throw in some green onions and cilantro at the last minute.  Serve over boiled noodles.

Homemade calzones or pizza -- I usually use the Costco beef meatballs or pepperoni and pasta sauce as the filling/topping, though if I still have chicken left over I'll sometimes do a pesto/chicken/mushroom version

Beans and rice -- cook up onions, ground beef, one can of kidney beans and one can of black beans with some diced tomatoes and taco seasoning.  Mix with rice

Curry -- my husband usually makes either beef or lamb curry going from a recipe he found that we really like.  Time consuming, though.

Kung pao chicken with rice-- I have gotten really good at this one.  Make Fuchsia Dunlop's recipe. Stir fry a green veg to go with

Mapo Tofu with rice-- also FD's recipe.  DH often makes this one.  I typically make it with broccoli on the side

Chinese style beef noodles.  Make a variation of FD's recipe in the crock pot

Korean braised shortribs with rice.  Make them in the crockpot.  Had this for dinner tonight.  Sesame spinach on the side

Baked wild-caught salmon fillets -- get the fillets frozen from Costco.  Make with hot crash potatoes and either broccoli or asparagus on the side.

Those are the main go-tos I can think of off the top of my head.  I've experimented with some other Thai/Indian/Mexican/greek recipes but haven't really found any "keepers" that have stayed in the rotation.

What's on your menu rotation?

Megma

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2018, 07:45:25 PM »
This is more of our fall/winter rotation, more soups.

Oven fajitas

Instant Pot burrito bowls https://cookfasteatwell.com/pressure-cooker-chicken-black-bean-and-rice-burrito-bowls/

Instant pot Lemons garlic chicken and rice https://single-girl-gourmet.blogspot.com/2018/03/instant-pot-lemon-garlic-chicken-rice-4.html

Ham potato soup in the crock pot, made this today

Chili usually in the instant pot

Shrimp + broccoli sheet pan, put them on same sheet pan sprtiz with olive oil and bake at 400 for 8 minutes. sometimes I put potatoes in for roasting with a head start. Not super low cost but we try to eat healthy and splurge on seafood.

Tacos, usually with ground turkey. Lentil tacos sometimes too.

Chicken with a balsamic marinade or shawarma marinade

Megma

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2018, 07:48:12 PM »
Oh and tikka masala with jarred sauce from with Aldi or tjs (Aldiís is better) and rice.

If anyone has a good crock pot or instant pot recipe for this Iíd love it. When i tried to make it from scratch last time it was terrible!

Megma

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2018, 07:51:54 PM »

Korean braised shortribs with rice.  Make them in the crockpot.  Had this for dinner tonight.  Sesame spinach on the side

Can you share a recipe for this? Sound yummy!

lhamo

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2018, 08:18:52 PM »

Korean braised shortribs with rice.  Make them in the crockpot.  Had this for dinner tonight.  Sesame spinach on the side

Can you share a recipe for this? Sound yummy!

So what I do is a variation on this marinade recipe:

https://kimchimari.com/kalbi-galbi-korean-short-ribs-bbq-blender-marinade/

I substituted chicken broth for the water (since I had some I wanted to use up) and used more chicken broth and less soy sauce(about 1/2 a cup -- less salty that way).  I cut WAAAAY back on the sugar -- used about 1 tbsp  some leftover maple syrup the kids didn't use on their pancakes (maybe another tbsp full?  Didn't bother with the plum syrup.

I put the ribs (I use flanken cut) in the crockpot, bone side down.  About 3lbs of ribs makes enough meat for 4 people and just covers the bottom when placed vertically.  Then I dump the marinade mixure over the top, poke the whole thing with chopsticks to let to marinade fully coat the meat, turn on low and cooked for about 7 hours.  The bits of the meat that stick up above the marinade will get a bit burned looking -- a few times during cooking I rearrange things a bit so other parts get exposed).

The recipe I used for sesame spinach was from recipezaar.com, an old site that seems to have turned into genius kitchen -- anyway, this is the same recipe:

https://www.geniuskitchen.com/recipe/sesame-spinach-30471

The ribs are a bit of a splurge for us -- I try to buy them when on sale for $5-6/lb.  I typically try not to spend more than $3-4/lb for other cuts of beef.  But the whole family likes this recipe and we're not poor, so I've made it a couple of times in the past two weeks.

Have you tried this recipe for crockpot chicken tikka masala?  I made it once and seem to remember we liked it, but haven't gone back to it -- I think they tweaked the recipe since I made it:

https://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-slow-cooker-chicken-tikka-masala-recipes-from-the-kitchn-211284
« Last Edit: October 14, 2018, 08:22:44 PM by lhamo »

calimom

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2018, 09:01:09 PM »
Here's my meal plan for the week with some of my usual go-to menu planning favorites:

Monday
Chicken breasts in the crockpot with a tub of medium hot salsa, pulled apart and served with corn tortillas, sliced cabbage, avocado and radishes. Any leftovers will be lunch for me or snacks for my teen age monster eating son.

Tuesday
Pork tenderloin roasted with the leftover cabbage and onions. Crockpot will have been washed and left  out and will be used for applesauce from apples gifted from a friend.

Wednesday
Sweet potatoes, roasted, with veggie burgers in the oven, maybe with cheese. Late season zucchini/peppers/onions as a stirfry.

Thursday
Zucchini/Quinoa casserole. Roasted chicken thighs. Green salad. Extra for lunch/snacks.

Friday
Son will be away. DD and I will likely have frozen Annie Chun's won tons cooked in beef broth with handfuls of spinach and some green onions thrown in. This is so easy, and delicious.

Saturday
There will be a (bartered) delivery of fresh farm eggs to be used in a frittata with all the leftover zucchini/spinach/peppers and some cheese. Applesauce on the side and hopefully a loaf of sourdough bread will make an appearance. That might be a midday meal or supper depending on where the day takes us.

Overall I like to cook but don't spend tons of time doing it. I enjoy feeding my kids and myself relatively healthy meals and not spending a lot on groceries.It's interesting to me to hear how others do it and get new ideas, which I'm always open to.

Tass

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2018, 09:04:29 PM »
  • Black bean burritos - onion, red pepper, black beans, salsa, cream cheese to thicken
  • Veggie masala burgers (frozen from Trader Joe's) - really yummy with an egg on top
  • Indian cauliflower dish (the recipe calls it tikka masala but my Indian friend says it's lying lol): https://www.feastingathome.com/quick-cauliflower-masala/
Many many things from Good and Cheap (https://cookbooks.leannebrown.com/good-and-cheap.pdf) including:
  • Chana masala (Indian chickpea and tomato dish)
  • Quesadillas
  • Polenta with spinach and olives + egg
  • Peas with garlic and lemon on toast
  • Vegetable jambalaya with shrimp
  • Jacket sweet potatoes (roast and smash in skin, top with sour cream, scallions, salt/pepper)
  • Roasted potatoes and peppers with garlic - great with salsa in burrito or in scrambled eggs
  • Zucchini tomato cobbler with cornbread topping
  • Soyriso ragu over pasta
  • Pierogies, when we want to spend a few hours doing it
  • Homemade caprese pizza (dough from GaC)

Excited to see what else gets posted here.

Megma

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2018, 09:10:50 PM »

Korean braised shortribs with rice.  Make them in the crockpot.  Had this for dinner tonight.  Sesame spinach on the side

Can you share a recipe for this? Sound yummy!

So what I do is a variation on this marinade recipe:

https://kimchimari.com/kalbi-galbi-korean-short-ribs-bbq-blender-marinade/

I substituted chicken broth for the water (since I had some I wanted to use up) and used more chicken broth and less soy sauce(about 1/2 a cup -- less salty that way).  I cut WAAAAY back on the sugar -- used about 1 tbsp  some leftover maple syrup the kids didn't use on their pancakes (maybe another tbsp full?  Didn't bother with the plum syrup.

I put the ribs (I use flanken cut) in the crockpot, bone side down.  About 3lbs of ribs makes enough meat for 4 people and just covers the bottom when placed vertically.  Then I dump the marinade mixure over the top, poke the whole thing with chopsticks to let to marinade fully coat the meat, turn on low and cooked for about 7 hours.  The bits of the meat that stick up above the marinade will get a bit burned looking -- a few times during cooking I rearrange things a bit so other parts get exposed).

The recipe I used for sesame spinach was from recipezaar.com, an old site that seems to have turned into genius kitchen -- anyway, this is the same recipe:

https://www.geniuskitchen.com/recipe/sesame-spinach-30471

The ribs are a bit of a splurge for us -- I try to buy them when on sale for $5-6/lb.  I typically try not to spend more than $3-4/lb for other cuts of beef.  But the whole family likes this recipe and we're not poor, so I've made it a couple of times in the past two weeks.

Have you tried this recipe for crockpot chicken tikka masala?  I made it once and seem to remember we liked it, but haven't gone back to it -- I think they tweaked the recipe since I made it:

https://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-slow-cooker-chicken-tikka-masala-recipes-from-the-kitchn-211284

Thanks! We don't eat much beef, it's usually a splurge for us too but I'll look for some on sale and give it a try 😀

Might try that tikka recipe too, I tried a different one. I may do IP though as a friend of mine whose a great cook and also Indian said crock pot doesn't givethe right flavor bc you need to saute the aromatics but crock pot recipe is easily converted to the ip.

lhamo

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2018, 09:24:31 PM »
The "tweaked" version of the recipe calls for sauteing the onions, garlic and spices before adding to the crock pot.  Makes sense.  Part of the reason the curry my DH makes is so good is that he does it in the dutch oven and cooks everything slowly to develop the flavors.

Now I want Indian food....

Thanks for the reminder about Good and Cheap, @Tass !  Chana Masala is something I make as a side when I do curry myself.  I also LOVED her cheddar jalapeno biscuits -- great side with soups.  Need to dig out my copy and try some new things.

Tass

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2018, 09:54:08 PM »
Do you mean the cheddar jalapeno scones? I've never tried those, maybe I'll give them a go!

Jesstache

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2018, 10:23:09 PM »
Tacos/Burritos:  Make these "not refried beans" in the crockpot: http://penniesandpancakes.blogspot.com/2012/09/crockpot-refried-beans-019-per-cup.html  use them with tortillas and shredded cheese (kids) or in lettuce wraps with tomatoes, sour cream, little ground beef taco meat (not really needed though), avocado or unlimited combinations

Pulled Pork: Get pork loin from costco, cut up into 2 lb hunks (or so), put one in the crock pot (freeze rest for later) all day on low with nothing else, shred and mix in a bunch of bbq sauce.  Serve on hawaiian sweet rolls (or our kids just eat it straight) , side of steamed broccoli

Grilled chicken breasts, steamed white rice (rice cooker for the win!) and steamed broccoli.  Hubby likes to chop it all up and mix it with mae ploy sweet chili sauce, kids eat all parts separately as do I.

Spaghetti with jarred sauce (the horror!) and grilled sausage links cut up and mixed with sauce.  If we want to add some substance and I plan ahead far enough (about 2 hours), I will make this awesomely easy, cheap and delicious french bread: https://www.thefrugalgirl.com/2009/03/wednesday-baking-cheap-cheap-breadfrench-bread/

Pork and Peanut Dragon Noodles: https://www.budgetbytes.com/pork-peanut-dragon-noodles/

Lentil and Sausage Stew (with the french bread above): https://www.budgetbytes.com/lentil-sausage-stew/

Cabbage and Beef Stir Fry is one I love but can't get the kids to eat (not a surprise): https://www.budgetbytes.com/beef-cabbage-stir-fry/

Kids a lot of times will get a box of noodles (tri-color spirals), mixed with 1/2 stick butter and a small can of peas, top generously with parmesan cheese.  Kids love it, makes a great side dish

Pizza using this dough recipe: https://moneysavingmom.com/2012/05/4-weeks-to-fill-your-freezer-freezer-friendly-pizza-dough-day-13.html  with grilled chicken, costco pesto (yum), mozzarella cheese and red bell peppers.  I'd put mushrooms too but hubby doesn't like.  Kids get standard pepperoni

Chicken tortilla soup: 2 Cans corn, 2 cans black beans, can rotel (spicy), chicken broth, leftover chicken, sometimes leftover rice if i have it.  Serve with chips, shredded cheese and sour cream

Yellow chicken curry with potatoes served over rice 

Breakfast for dinner is also always a hit with everyone

We generally get one big bag of broccoli florets from Costco each week and have that steamed with most meals.  Kids like it, I like it, it's a win.  Frozen corn sometimes or green beans when we get tired of broccoli and need a break.  Depends on the season. 




lhamo

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2018, 05:34:21 PM »
Do you mean the cheddar jalapeno scones? I've never tried those, maybe I'll give them a go!

Yes -- it has been awhile since I made them, obviously. They are really good, though.

DH was going to make curry but got too bogged down in house repair stuff, so I'm doing meatball sandwiches.

bucketsofrain

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2018, 07:43:27 PM »
I don't have a full on rotation like you do, since I'm often just feeding myself, but here are my favorite recipes for leftover chicken:

Chicken tortilla soup (I always have tortillas in my freezer since I often end up with a pack with like two left in it, so I use those here): http://www.rickbayless.com/recipe/sopa-azteca/

Chicken and dumplings (anyone who is Southern please look away, but sometimes I add a can of artichoke hearts to this because I love them and it reminds me of something my mom makes): https://smittenkitchen.com/2007/12/chicken-and-dumplings/

Enchiladas (this is often easier for me than the recipe looks because BF will buy tomatillos and poblanos in season and I'll then make a verde sauce and freeze it for later): https://www.homesicktexan.com/2012/04/enchiladas-verdes-recipe.html

Not chicken, but one of my tastiest and fastest meals I make is larb. I like making the recipe from the Pok Pok cookbook and I use ground pork:
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/food-and-wine/recipes/recipe-larb-moo/article36601104/

lhamo

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #13 on: October 15, 2018, 07:46:35 PM »
Mmmmm -- larb!  My family isn't so big on pork, but I guess I could use ground chicken.  Or turkey.  Talk about cultural imprerialism.....

lhamo

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #14 on: October 15, 2018, 07:51:55 PM »
New keeper for the rotation:  Open-faced meatball sandwiches (basically mini pizzas)

Nuke about 24 frozen beef meatballs (Costco) for 5 minutes, let cool and then quarter
Slice 4 ciabatta rolls (Costco) in half
Smear top of rolls with jarred pasta sauce
Array the meatballs on the sauced bread slices
Top with plenty of mozzerella cheese
Broil in the oven until cheese is browned/bubbly

Served with a caprese salad (basil from my porch, diced tomatoes, Costco mini mozzerella balls cut in half, a bit of olive oil/balsamic/salt/pepper)

This was a huge hit!  And soooo easy....

OtherJen

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #15 on: October 15, 2018, 09:25:10 PM »
Thanks for starting this, @lhamo ! We donít have a rotation but Iím always looking for good recipe ideas.

This chicken and rice casserole is a favorite if we have a little extra time (requires about 1.5 hours but an hour is baking time). I use a Dutch oven and brown the chicken in the butter, remove that, and then sautť about a cup of diced onion, a couple minced garlic cloves, and about a teaspoon of dried thyme for a few minutes before adding everything else and baking as directed. I havenít tried it in the Instant pot but I think it would be great with a bit of tweaking.

Apologies if this has been posted and I missed it, but I made this chicken and broccoli pasta in lemon cream sauce a couple of weeks ago and it is now on our ďmust repeatĒ list. Easy, fast, absolutely delicious.

I love Budget Bytes. This curried chickpeas recipe is also on our repeat list, as is this slow cooker sesame beef (I added a pound of steamed broccoli florets at the end).

This oven-roasted chicken shawarma is not quite the real deal (I was born and raised in Dearborn, MI so Iím definitely a proponent of shawarma law), but itís really freaking good and we eat it regularly. Garlic sauce is a must, but Iím lazy and usually just mix a few cloves of garlic and a bit of salt into full-fat Greek yogurt. We eat it with rice and salad.


Tris Prior

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #16 on: October 16, 2018, 08:50:01 AM »
Stuff I make often:

Chana masala: https://www.theironyou.com/2016/03/vegan-easy-chickpea-tikka-masala.html

Some sort of tofu stir fry. I like this one a lot but it's kind of labor intensive: https://www.budgetbytes.com/mango-coconut-tofu-bowls/
To be honest, though, I'm going to be the dissenting voice. I find many Budget Bytes recipes too bland, and usually have to WAY up the spice, and sometimes the liquid because I feel like sometimes they come out dry. This one's good, though.

Here's another tofu stirfry,  which is great for using up leftover veg and cooks in 2 minutes!: https://pipingpotcurry.com/thai-green-curry-pressure-cooker/

Sometimes I'll just fry up some tofu, coating in cornstarch first so it gets crisp, along with some veg and then dump a bottled sauce over it and serve over rice. This is also a great way to use up jam - take some jam and mix it with a little soy sauce and vinegar until it tastes like a sweet teriyaki sauce (so precise, I know, I don't measure though). You can thicken the sauce with a teaspoon or so of cornstarch too so it gets shiny and gloopy (in a good way).
Oh - or you can do homemade peanut sauce for the tofu! Peanut butter, sriracha, vinegar, soy sauce, a little honey if you want. Sometimes I throw in some sesame oil if I have any. Again, I just mix it together until it tastes like sauce.

This is a go-to in fall/winter: http://soup.betterrecipes.com/crockpot-chili-with-chocolate.html It sounds gross, chocolate chili? It's so good though! I top it with a little lowfat sour cream or Greek yogurt. Yum.

I spent most of the summer eating Fancy Salad: Spinach/arugula mix from Aldi. Gorgonzola or blue cheese crumbles. Lots of chopped up cherry tomatoes. Sometimes added mushrooms or red pepper if I had any. Dried cherries - or, until they were gone, the oven roasted balsamic cherries that I made and froze over the summer. A small sprinkle of nuts. Homemade balsamic vinaigrette (literally swished some balsamic and olive oil together). This was inspired by a stupidly expensive but amazing salad I ate while on vacation in Door County, WI (known for its cherry crops).

OtherJen

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #17 on: October 16, 2018, 09:12:01 AM »
@Tris Prior , you had me at "oven roasted balsamic cherries." How did you make those?! I need them in my life.

Tris Prior

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #18 on: October 16, 2018, 09:16:30 AM »
@OtherJen - http://www.dinnerwithjulie.com/2014/07/29/honey-balsamic-roasted-cherries/
I didn't use any pepper or herbs, though. And I found they needed roasted longer than the recipe said - I just watched them until they looked soft and a little gooey.

SO SO good. We have a brief period in summer here where sweet cherries are quite cheap. I make a few batches of these and freeze.

OtherJen

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #19 on: October 16, 2018, 09:36:58 AM »
@OtherJen - http://www.dinnerwithjulie.com/2014/07/29/honey-balsamic-roasted-cherries/
I didn't use any pepper or herbs, though. And I found they needed roasted longer than the recipe said - I just watched them until they looked soft and a little gooey.

SO SO good. We have a brief period in summer here where sweet cherries are quite cheap. I make a few batches of these and freeze.

Thank you!

therethere

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #20 on: October 16, 2018, 09:40:31 AM »
Oh and tikka masala with jarred sauce from with Aldi or tjs (Aldiís is better) and rice.

If anyone has a good crock pot or instant pot recipe for this Iíd love it. When i tried to make it from scratch last time it was terrible!

I use this recipe but use a can of coconut milk instead of cream because I have it on hand. I also make it spicier with  more cayenne. https://www.savorytooth.com/instant-pot-chicken-tikka-masala/

Tass

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #21 on: October 16, 2018, 11:36:01 AM »
Everything Tris Prior just said is making me drool.

LifeHappens

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #22 on: October 16, 2018, 11:49:07 AM »
I try to have kind of a broad framework for at least a handful of meals every week. What that looks like right now is:
1) a salad night with a big dinner salad and maybe a side of garlic bread
2) one Nice Dinner night where I try a new recipe or make something a little more elaborate. That's where we get our dietary variety.
3) one or two DH cooks night. He's not much of a cook so that is usually spaghetti with jarred sauce, tacos or the like
4) a couple "I don't feel like cooking" options. Hummus, veggie sticks and pita chips, frozen pizza and veggie burgers are staples.

Megma

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #23 on: October 16, 2018, 08:05:55 PM »
Oh and tikka masala with jarred sauce from with Aldi or tjs (Aldiís is better) and rice.

If anyone has a good crock pot or instant pot recipe for this Iíd love it. When i tried to make it from scratch last time it was terrible!

I use this recipe but use a can of coconut milk instead of cream because I have it on hand. I also make it spicier with  more cayenne. https://www.savorytooth.com/instant-pot-chicken-tikka-masala/
Thanks! I'll give that a whirl!

LifeHappens, meh I had grapes and an M&M cookie for dinner because I wasn't really hungry. Whatever.

ElleFiji

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #24 on: October 18, 2018, 04:20:00 PM »
I have fallen off my meal planning and preparing routine...
But usually the fridge needs to have
Hummus
Some kind of cooked tofu
Some kind of cooked and raw veggies.
And then there is rice.

sparkytheop

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #25 on: October 18, 2018, 11:00:52 PM »
I want to learn more Eastern European recipes, along with more Asian recipes, but haven't tried too many.

I don't really have a rotation though.  I cook using what is on sale, what is available in the garden, what I have in the freezer/pantry.  I also cut and froze about 4 gallons worth of cantaloupe (for oatmeal smoothies, I can't stand the taste of them on their own, they are the one food I can think of that I have to spit out. But they're great in smoothies.)

We stock up on boneless/skinless chicken breasts with cheap (I really miss zaycon foods).  We'll bake it breaded with whatever we want (cover in herbed mayo or ranch, coat with panko crumbs, bread crumbs, crackers, fried onions, etc). Or we'll just eat it baked or cooked in a little butter in the skillet.

I've made my own paneer and then used that with tikka masala sauce, served over rice.

Some nights I'll just do farmer's cheese (or similar) and jam on a fresh baguette (still perfecting my baguettes).

Every recipe I've tried from Natashaskitchen.com has been amazing.

In the winter, I'll do some more soups and chili.  Cheeseburger chowder is always good, and I have a really good borscht recipe if I want to spend a couple hours doing that (I need to get a cheaper source of beets!  Maybe I can talk my mom into growing some in her garden...)

I keep hard boiled eggs on hand for nights when I'm not really hungry but need a little to snack on, or for times when I'm craving protein but don't have any meat pulled out.

We can a lot of different things, including chicken, so I can open a jar of chicken and some relish (green tomato or zucchini, also canned at home), add some mayo and I have a good chicken salad for bread or crackers.

Rosy

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #26 on: October 19, 2018, 11:27:15 AM »
I love to cook and invent new recipes. So there is very little rotation in our house and now I'm dying to try out Aldi's tikki masala.
Our favorites appear maybe once every six to eight weeks

Our favorites:

1. Texas fried chicken drumsticks (heavy skillet) - organic mashed potatoes with fresh rosemary from the garden - steamed, fresh corn on the cob.

2. Tuna salad - I serve it in a glass bowl lined with lettuce leaves with rings of pineapple and hard-boiled egg slices on top. (real mayo-a little at a time, a dash of hot Hungarian style pepper, salt/white pepper, a spoonful of mustard, a flat teaspoon of celery seed, celery and cucumber/pickle finely chopped, two spoonfuls of pickle marinade (usually from a jar of pickles in the fridge)) - we like Ciabatta or a hearty bread with it.

3. Bourbon marinated salmon (from Publix) 10-12 min in the oven, flip halfway through - tastes heavenly, with brown rice or any of the Goya flavored rice packs or steamed small potatoes and frozen spinach leaves/ corn on the cob in season-watermelon slices in season.
3a - We usually have a little salmon left over - so the next night, I make a Palma Rosa sauce (sauce pack from Publix) - add heavy cream, a little butter and two tablespoons of tomato paste, simmer ten minutes, optional: add 1/4 cup of white wine then add salmon the last minute and serve over pasta.
Green peas optional - I may cook them in the pasta water or add to the skillet - or steam-microwave any veggie.

4. Extra large frozen shrimp (from Aldi), thaw, season shrimp-sautee in butter, at the end add 1/4 cup of white wine immediately toss with Linguini. Green peas or fresh mini tomatoes or peppers or spinach alongside or cucumber salad.
4a - Variation - quick fry the shrimp, add pineapple salsa and sprinkle some shredded coconut on top - serve with fresh pineapple rings and mango. Serve with rice topped with fresh lemon verbena leaves. Quick and refreshing.

5. Smoked pork chops (thick slices) pan-fried (not too high or too long or they'll be dry) until browned - wine sauerkraut - you guessed it:) garlic mashed potatoes.
5a - Easily changed by - using Kielbasa (sausage ring) or Aldi's Smocked Knackwurst (looks like fat hotdogs) or brat or Italian sausage - sauteed with onions and peppers in a quarter/half cup of dark beer.
5b - Try fresh leeks quickly sauteed in butter or with bacon, topped with cheese - or - make a salad from fresh leeks and corn, fresh red peppers - yum:)
5c -  Serve with red cabbage in a glass jar from Aldi - add 5-7 cloves - heat up (don't cook). In season - sautee fresh curly cabbage (with bacon and cheese on top or au natural or a simple cream or cheese sauce).
5d - Last week I fixed the fresh leeks with apple slices and bacon, topped with a bit of sharp cheddar - divine:)

6. Tipsy Chicken - the fun part is that it stands up and looks impressive and is ever so tender. Whole fresh chicken - baked in the oven about an hour - lots of recipes online. I use fresh rosemary twigs in the carcass and whatever rub I feel like coming up with - generally it has thyme in it. Beer can or soda can whichever you have on hand works fine. I have a little contraption to make it stand up - usually about 2.99 at the discount stores.
Serve with whatever you like.

7. French style beef roast - made with red wine, onion and mushrooms only. You want stock or real beef broth to get a dark gravy. Sometimes I add chunks of fresh celery and small young potatoes.

8. Chicken Paprikash or Beef Paprikash - a hearty stew made with lots of fresh or frozen peppers (I like using all red), one large onion, I like to add tomato paste but no tomatoes since they seem to interfere with the intent/taste of the dish - you want the peppers to dominate. I often cheat and use a pkg of Goulash for a richer brown gravy. The original recipe calls for hot red pepper - I just use hot red Pepper (Paprika) powder/seasoning, because that way I get the sweetness of the fresh red peppers and I can regulate how hot the dish is - if at all.

9. Spaghetti Bolognese a la Rosy:) - probably one of my signature dishes along with the Texas fried drumsticks. I make it from scratch, more so in the summer when I have fresh tomatoes from the garden. It's always thick and never has the same ingredients, it needs to simmer at least three hours to be the "real" thing.
While Bolognese means it has to have ground beef we do add plenty of fresh veggies and so the prep time for all that cutting is high unless I happen to have fresh chopped veggies from the garden in the freezer and sometimes I use Italian sausage instead.
The secret is time to simmer and lots of Oregano:)

10. We enjoy Brunch - we like baked brie with fruit or jam and croissant or french bread or lox on a bagel with cream cheese or any kind of omelet with homemade fried potatoes. Top favorite is my German pancakes served with brandied sweet red cherries and real homemade whipping cream.
Variation - Apple Pancakes. Sliced apples sauteed then add pancake batter - top with cinnamon and/or raisins soaked in rum.

It was really hard to keep our favorites to ten - we like food and I make a killer Texas chili and great Fajitas.....and cornbread.
Today we will have Korean? short ribs in plum marinade - stove top, dutch oven. This weekend I'll try my hand at potato pancakes, something that I've simply never managed to learn, but my GF showed me how to make it from raw potatoes so we'll have that with applesauce.
I have a small pork roast in the freezer that will become shredded pork - fix in dutch oven-just pour a bottle of coke on it - nothing else. Serve with coleslaw and whatever.
I have a beautiful eggplant ripening in the garden and might serve it crisped/sauteed with Veal Marsala-love:) and I have a recipe for a grits dumpling filled with plums tacked to my fridge ...

Then there are more fresh leeks in the fridge beckoning to become soup, maybe with leftover potatoes and the last of the bacon. Grandma showed me a trick for well-flavored soup - a cube of butter (what else:) almost to the bubbly stage beginning to brown stage, add a bit of water and a tablespoon of cornstarch, whisk well, add bacon - add a few of your veggies to brown, then fill with water and create your soup. 

I cook seasonal - time for chili:) Texas style-no beans. We try to eat fresh fruit and veggies and a fair amount of salads. Our favorite trifecta is beets - coleslaw - cucumbers and homegrown lettuce/spinach.
Apples and cabbages and cauliflower are in season so I will do a few dishes around that next and bake at least one apple pie.

You made me realize I haven't cooked anything with curry or chicken lately and I love things with peanut and coconut sauce - time to switch gears.
What I usually do when I'm lacking ideas is to watch a Rachel Ray show and I must say my other favorite was/is Bitchin' Kitchen.

I cook a good mix of German - Tex-Mex - Italian - French - a few Oriental dishes and whatever I picked up while traveling in Turkey and living in different parts of the US. The Natural Food stores make me laugh, because I've always cooked with a variety of ancient grains that used to be dirt cheap.
I love grits and bulgur and rainbow trout and kitchen sink soups and roasts/stews and authentic chocolate mousse and really, why I haven't fixed Fajitas in six months is beyond me. 

Thank you all for the great links - I still marvel sometimes how the world has changed - watching detailed cooking instructions on your tablet in the kitchen.

lhamo

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #27 on: October 24, 2018, 03:55:04 PM »
This oven-roasted chicken shawarma is not quite the real deal (I was born and raised in Dearborn, MI so Iím definitely a proponent of shawarma law), but itís really freaking good and we eat it regularly. Garlic sauce is a must, but Iím lazy and usually just mix a few cloves of garlic and a bit of salt into full-fat Greek yogurt. We eat it with rice and salad.

I have been waiting all week to try this one -- it is in the fridge and will go in the oven in another hour or so.  The marinade smells delicious!  I made some tzatziki to go with it (garlic sauce sounded good but my DH would object to all the oil in it) and will have a cucumber/tomato/feta salad on the side.

PS:  That was some DAMN good chicken!  Next time I'm going to put in 4-5 chicken breasts (there is plenty of marinade and space in the pan) so there are leftovers.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2018, 09:22:01 PM by lhamo »

Megma

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #28 on: October 26, 2018, 08:44:14 AM »
I love to cook and invent new recipes. So there is very little rotation in our house and now I'm dying to try out Aldi's tikki masala.


The tika masala sauce from Aldi is great. We eat it all the time. IMO, it is slightly better than the tika sauce from Trader Joe's and there is slightly more in the jar. I still buy the one from TJs if I am there and need some, but Aldi's is better.

Tris Prior

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #29 on: October 26, 2018, 09:05:57 AM »


The tika masala sauce from Aldi is great. We eat it all the time. IMO, it is slightly better than the tika sauce from Trader Joe's and there is slightly more in the jar. I still buy the one from TJs if I am there and need some, but Aldi's is better.

Really? Hmmm, will have to try. I really like TJ's sauce but haven't tried Aldi. Is it very salty? I find some of Aldi's prepared food to be too salty for me.

lhamo

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #30 on: October 26, 2018, 09:11:53 AM »
Just FYI, if you have something that is too salty you can try cooking a potato in it -- the starch absorbs much of the extra salt.

Megma

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Re: Mustachian meal rotations?
« Reply #31 on: October 26, 2018, 02:19:47 PM »


The tika masala sauce from Aldi is great. We eat it all the time. IMO, it is slightly better than the tika sauce from Trader Joe's and there is slightly more in the jar. I still buy the one from TJs if I am there and need some, but Aldi's is better.

Really? Hmmm, will have to try. I really like TJ's sauce but haven't tried Aldi. Is it very salty? I find some of Aldi's prepared food to be too salty for me.

I personally don't find it overly salty but I don't generally have this problem at aldi so YMMV. It's not "prepared" as in a whole meal, just the sauce if that makes a difference.

I think it's thicker than the one from TJs and I also think the jar might be slightly bigger (I haven't compared the oz but the Aldi one seems to cover more chicken).