I can’t manage without it, can you?

I don’t know how I did it? Oh, wait I didn’t! In March 2015 I started making menu and meal plans for the month and not only did my grocery bill drop but so did my weight!  In the past if I cooked, it was whatever I could stick in an oven because I was too tired, so it usually was fairly unhealthy food with all the nutrition processed out of it.

Emergency meal, fish fingers, hash browns and garlic bread
This is what happens when you don’t have a meal plan

The last 2 weeks I haven’t had a menu plan and I don’t know how I lived so many years without one. I stand in front of my cupboards each evening and stare at the stuff inside and I don’t know what to make! This is also costing money as I have had to go to the shop more often and I am impulse buying!

The first week I thought it would be easy not to have a plan as there were only 3 of us at home  How hard can it be?  I’ll tell you what it was a Disaster that  is what it was!

This past week I more or less had an idea of what I wanted to cook, so it went better  However, this week I am once again sitting down and drawing up my plan! I think I will do January at the same time and get it over with.

I know a lot of people find planning 1 week at a time enough but I have found it better for me to do the whole month.

Here’s how last week’s semi plan went.

Monday is meat free, I found a fish recipe that sounded good but needed a few changes to suit my family. I also had a box of frozen hake in the freezer and the rest of the ingredients in the cupboard so there was no need to shop.

Italian inspired fish stew
Italian inspired fish stew

Italian inspired fish stew! Stew is usually a winter dish but in my opinion fish is not as filling, or heavy, as meat and therefore makes a nice light stew that is perfect for summer. http://kasheringyourlife.co.za/index.php/recipes/italian-style-fish-stew/

Tuesday, which is mince night, we went out for supper.   My youngest has been begging for us to go to ‘Open Flame’, which is the meat restaurant where my eldest daughter works parttime. It is usually a bit over our budget but we decided, with only 3 of us, we could do it. The steaks were cooked to perfection and the ribs were outstanding but it was the desert which stood out the most  I was simple and delicious. Dairy free Vanilla ice cream served with dark chocolate spring rolls. The spring rolls were light and crispy and the chocolate filling was yum.

Wednesday night was the public holiday and I re heated porcupine meatballs that I had frozen. http://kasheringyourlife.co.za/index.php/recipes/porcupine-meatballs/

porcupine meatballs

Thursday we had fish fingers and oven chips with peas.

store bought fish fingers PnP
store bought fish fingers PnP

Friday night I made an old favourite of mine, a chicken stew in the slow cooker.

Slow cooked chicken with baby potatoes, tomato and onion
Slow cooked chicken with baby potatoes, tomato and onion

Saturday night was nachos with avocado dip

Sunday night was a pizza. http://kasheringyourlife.co.za/index.php/recipes/easy-pizza-base/

This week I have to have a meal plan!   I am in holiday mode, so if I don’t do a plan we are going to be eating really badly and my budget is going to suffer severely. All the kids will be back from summer camp soon and are sure to be starving, even though I know they get 3 full meals a day and there is a tuck shop for in between!    Can’t wait to have the family all back together again!

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