Sunday, June 8, 2008

Simple Dinners

There's a lot of concern lately about rising grocery prices. It seems like the price of everything has shot up recently. My grocery bill has definitely increased over the last few weeks, and I've been trying to figure out how to keep it down without creating a "Mommy, I'm starving, there's nothing to eat!" atmosphere in the house.

One of the strategies that I've found helpful is to serve simple dairy meals on weeknights. These are quick to prepare, don't use a lot of pots so are easy to clean up after, and are light and just right for warm spring evenings:

omelettes in warm pita (add cheese or mushrooms or sliced crunchy veggies)

pita pizzas/make your own bagel pizzas (the frozen ones are expensive and gross)

simple baked ziti- ziti, jarred pasta sauce, and a little shredded cheese- that's it.

tuna or salmon croquettes (serve with fresh bread and a simple salad)

vegetable wraps (restaurants charge a fortune for these, but you can make them at home easily)

"seudah shlishi" on a weeknight- tuna salad, hard boiled eggs, sliced cheese or cream cheese, and sliced veggies with bagels or rolls

If your crew prefers meat, these are some light options:

"kosher cobb salad"-shredded lettuce, chopped cucumbers and tomatoes, sliced hard boiled eggs, cubed turkey breast, a bit of dressing (we like Ceasar dressing with this)- this is very popular in my house (if you come by, I'll make you some)

"chicken schnitzel burgers"- ground chicken patties dipped in eggs and flavored breadcrumbs and fried quickly in a little oil (don't serve these on buns- instead offer some plain rice and a green vegetable on the side)

Hope you find one or more of these appetizing!


Leora said...

Great ideas! Fresh corn is now in season, so steamed corn can be a great dinner combined with two other simple foods that your kids eat. My daughter even ate some corn raw last week; little did she know, she's into the latest health craze (eating vegetables raw).

I like salmon croquettes a lot. I'm planning to make some for Tuesday of Shavuot.

Baila said...

Great ideas--always looking for cheap dinners that they will actually eat.

JJ said...

Those are great ideas- and a lot of them are things we enjoy. I think omelettes are the most popular dinner here in Israel :-)

therapydoc said...

It's healthier, no question, to eat light during the week, and on the weekend, too. Thanks for the ideas.

Ookamikun said...

Cook half a bag of elbows macaroni. Dump into a frying pan. Add 3 eggs. Mix the eggs into the pasta and set start frying on medium. Add cheese and add pasta sauce, preferably with mushrooms.

Cut up some semi-frozen meat into very thin squares, 1 inch in width, or cut up one chicken breast into thin strips. Marinade in teriyaki sauce for at least 30 minutes. Cook 2 bricks of ramen. Place a wok on high heat. Add the meat or chicken. Stir-fry for a minute or 2. Add edamame beans and bamboo shoots. After a couple more minutes add the ramen. Another couple minutes and you're done.

Stir fry frozen vegetables with cut up chicken breast.

Make Japanese curry. Very cheap and serves 10. Here's my recipe

SuperRaizy said...

I tried a chicken and vegetable stir fry recently and it was a hit. I like your idea of marinating the chicken in teriyaki sauce before cooking.
The first recipe you listed left me a little confused. What's the point of adding eggs to macaroni?

Ookamikun said...

Try it and you'll see ;-)
Just make sure to mix the eggs in before you turn on the flame.

Here's an interesting snack/lunch idea.
My son loves it.

Soups are also good. My wife makes a giant pot of yemenite soup and we eat for half the week. The recipe is in the comments.

The Chief said...

These recipes sound delicious. will try some.

Jewish Side of Babysitter said...

The last one sounds the best!

One thing I experimented with and love, is to take those flaky doughy stuff put duck sauce in it and then cut up chicken then make it in a triangle shaped thing and bake it. Or to do the same thing but first put in pastrami or any deli then duck sauce and chicken, it taste delicious, but might be expensive, I don't know.