Sunday, January 31, 2010

February Dinner Challenge Schedule

Okay, dinner challenge starts tomorrow! It took a while to get it all organized (about a day and a half, plus an hour here and there, actually), but it's all together--mostly. Click here to see the whole month's calendar.

I decided to group the recipes by ethnicity, loosely, which has some benefits. One is that I think it will be fun to get out the map and talk with the kids about the cultures that the food we are eating comes from. Another is that I will have less waste with ingredients because many will be repeated throughout the week, so I won't have to buy a whole bunch of something to only use half of it and then buy it again two weeks later because what I bought before has gone bad. However, we may be sick of rice this week, and tired of beans the next, and tired of tomatoes the next. Hopefully it will just be fun.

Here's the lineup for this week.

Week 1 - Asian Week
Monday: Asian Black Bean Soup
*Miniature Lemon Cheesecake Tarts for dessert
Tuesday: Applebee's Orange Chicken Skillet
Wednesday: Crock Pot Thai Curry
Thursday: Peanut Noodles
Friday: Korean Short Ribs

Here's the shopping list:

May Have On Hand:
vegetable oil
olive oil
soy sauce
cider vinegar
rice wine vinegar
crushed red pepper
minced garlic
salt and pepper
cayenne pepper
brown sugar
powdered sugar
peanut butter
4 eggs

May Need To Buy:
sour cream
8oz cream cheese
Betty Crocker Sunkist lemon bar mix
lemon or raspberry pie filling
1 cup chicken broth
3 cans black beans
ground coriander
hoisin sauce
sesame oil
13.5 oz can coconut milk
Thai red or green chili paste
short-grain, sweet, or "sushi" rice
almond rice pilaf
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
4-5 boneless chicken thighs
8-10 flanken-style short ribs, thawed (thin cut, 1/4-1/2 inch thick), or boneless ribs
orange juice
2 onions
1 bunch green onions
1 garlic clove
ginger root
1 red bell pepper
1 green bell pepper
1/2 large eggplant
1 large sweet potato
1 orange (or orange zest)
sugar snap peas

I go grocery shopping tomorrow morning. Oddly, this is often the most stressful part for me because it can be hard to find so many unfamiliar ingredients. Usually when I shop, it's pretty brainlessly. I have a beaten path through WalMart, and I know exactly where on each aisle to find what I usually buy.

But even though it is stressful, the shopping is also one of the things I missed the most after my November challenge was over. I don't do my challenge shopping at WalMart. I patronize local grocery stores because I know they have what I am looking for, and there are people who know what they are talking about working there. It became such an adventure to learn about new vegetables and cuts of meat, and I have a real love for the produce section at Lin's and the meat counter at Albertson's now.

So, wish me luck, and watch for the barrage of blog posts!


Suzy said...

I can't wait to read all about what you are serving up this month! I can already tell you I'll love your first recipe.

Kel said...

I am excited for your adventure. We will be trying some of your successes, for sure.