Happy Monday, friends! I had a great time Friday night sitting out on my back porch with a stack of food magazines and iced coffee. Most of the periodicals had been given to me by others who had looked through them, then passed them along. How sweet! Why do I flip through food magazines? Or why do I sit with one of my cookbooks and put page markers in the pages? Not just to “Oooo” or “Ahhh” over the pictures (though I do that!). I do it for three reasons:
- I get tired of eating the same things
- I like to try stirring new things up in my kitchen!
- I like to surprise my husband with special recipes I’ve made for him!
I sat there for about a half an hour and ripped out recipes I want to try.
How about you = are you in a menu rut? Spaghetti, frozen pizza, chicken tenders from the freezer section, steamed veggies in a bag…it just gets old. I would challenge you to pull out either the magazines that have been delivered to your mailbox or one of your favorite cookbooks. You can even go to the library and check out a cookbook from there to get some fresh ideas. The point is, flip through and find recipes of menu items that you maybe already have most of the ingredients for. If you know you purchased chicken breasts and they’re in the freezer waiting to be cooked, look for a recipe for chicken! You might only try one new recipe this week, but add something to change up your normal routine.
Here are some of the recipes I found:
- A supper Entree’ – Chicken breasts with Strawberry Salsa and Feta cheese – I have all the ingredients!
- A fish recipe – Salt and Vinegar Baked Fish – You use the Salt and Vinegar chips as the coating! That’s brilliant! Similar to this
- A weekend breakfast – Sausage and Egg Flatbreads – I’m going to make my own .
- flatbreads for this.
- A dessert – Strawberry Icebox Cake – This will be great for company this summer! Similar to this one.
I won’t make all these this week, but I will try at least one! It’s amazing how much money and time is saved when you make a menu. It is so helpful to me to know what’s for supper, so I can plan and work ahead.
So, if you’re not in the habit of making a menu, plan at least few nights for starters. If you’ve been making a menu, but you’re in a rut, go find some new, yummy sounding recipes to add!
Now let me share a recipe that I love. This is a quick and delicious Strawberry Shortcake, made a little lighter. These sweet biscuits are so much better than the store bought sponge cakes! The addition of the orange juice and vanilla to the fresh berries makes it SO good!
Lite Strawberry Shortcakes
- 3 1/2 cups halved strawberries, divided
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup orange juice
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons chilled stick margarine or butter, cut into small pieces
- 1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
- Cooking spray
- 6 tablespoons frozen reduced-calorie whipped topping, thawed
- Whole strawberries (optional)
Combine 1 cup strawberry halves, 1/3 cup sugar, orange juice, vanilla, and lemon juice in a bowl, and mash with a potato masher. Stir in 2 1/2 cups strawberry halves. Cover and chill.
Preheat oven to 425°.
Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, 3 tablespoons sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl; cut in margarine with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add buttermilk, stirring just until moist (dough will be sticky).
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead lightly 4 times with floured hands. Pat dough into a 6 x 4-inch rectangle. Cut dough into 6 squares. Place 1 inch apart on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake at 425° for 12 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
Split shortcakes in half horizontally using a serrated knife; place each bottom half on a dessert plate. Spoon 1/4 cup strawberry mixture over each bottom half. Top with shortcake tops; spoon 1/4 cup strawberry mixture over each top. Top each serving with 1 tablespoon whipped topping; garnish with whole strawberries, if desired.This dessert is as delicious as it is pretty!
I hope you’ll add this to your menu and also find some other great recipes to freshen up mealtime at your house this week!
Refresh your menu!