A little bit of salt, A little bit of pepper

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Weeknight Meal Plan – February 5, 2018

Weeknight Meal Plan – February 5, 2018

Each weekend we have been posting our upcoming meal plan for the week on Instagram.  On weekends (and usually Fridays) we tend to go out or decide as we go but planning and shopping ahead helps us to get dinner on the table, save money and eat healthier during busy weeks of school, practices and extracurricular activities.  We have been asked to share links to the recipes on our weekly plans so here we go, along with some commentary!  We find that 75 % of the battle is having a plan (and the groceries needed) before 5pm on a weeknight!


Lemon Scented Meatballs with pasta/spaghetti squash and a salad.

We linked the meatballs above as they are pretty close to what we use but we make the following changes.  Use whole wheat bread crumbs and add the zest of about four lemons.  Also, replace some or all of the water with fresh squeezed lemon juice based on personal preference.


Slow Cooker Chili Sesame Chicken over Rice

Update: This was  a first time for this recipe.  I didn’t get a chance to take a photo as it got hectic at dinner time.  Everyone thought it is was fine.  Not a home run but might make again and add some veggies or something to make it a little more interesting when plated.


Skinny Baked Broccoli Mac and Cheese

Maddie has play practice until 9 on Wednesday nights so we try to make something that can be transported for dinner at the studio. This will be a first time for this recipe.  Will post on Instagram if those around our table deem it a repeater.  

Update: This got bumped this week.  Husband was supposed to be out of town and trip was cancelled.  So we had Thursday’s meal instead and ordered Indian take out on Thursday!  One of these days I’ll make it!


Thai Yellow Chicken Curry w/Potatoes

This is a new to us recipe.   I bought the curry paste on amazon (here) as I cannot find yellow paste in our grocery stores here in Dallas.  Will add green beans to the curry.  – Update: This was delicious and so easy.  My 7 year old thought it was a little spicy but still ate it.  I’d make again.


Forager’s Pie

This is tried and true on our house.  Update:  This got bumped to Sunday.  I don’t know why I meal plan for Friday nights on busy weeks!



Most weekends I make granola for weekday breakfasts.  I’ll post that soon but in the meantime will try to add it as a pinned post in our Insta-stories.

For weekday lunches for me (and lunchbox side for Maddie….and possibly Harry) I am going to try a new recipe for 12 Minute Couscous Salad with Sun Dried Tomatoes and Feta Hope it tastes as good as it sounds!

Let us know if you make any of these.

XOXO- Susie and Maddie



Basil and Mint Pesto Fusilli with Peas

Basil and Mint Pesto Fusilli with Peas


Maddie and I love to watch Food Network and HGTV.  Late weekend afternoons you can usually find us on the couch watching “home shows” or one of our favorite cooking shows. This recipe is adapted from a Pioneer Woman recipe for Pasta with Pesto and Peas that we watched on a recent episode.

To make the recipe slightly more to our taste we used Ancient Grains pasta (a new favorite for it’s nutty flavor and bonus if you are gluten free–which we are not).  Lately, we have been trying to eat more whole grains and less processed wheat so we have been experimenting with different pastas from good old whole wheat to various rice/lentil and ancient grain varieties.  The one we used here is available at Whole Foods and has become a favorite in our home.  Dad loves it and honestly, little brother, Harry, probably doesn’t have a clue it isn’t standard fare pasta.  Just don’t overcook it or it can tend to be a little mushy….we usually undercook by about a minute from what the package suggests for an al dente finish.

To start the recipe we cleaned the basil and mint (the amounts below are forgiving and you can adjust to your own taste), we usually modify by how much basil we have on hand.  Throw the basil and mint in a food processor with the cheese, garlic, pine nuts, peas and salt and pepper.  (Note, we don’t pre-cook the peas and they turn out just fine….who needs another pot to deal with if not necessary!)

Process until combined and then drizzle in olive oil until desired consistency.

Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions for an al dente finish.  In a small saucepan, melt butter and heavy cream.  Then add cheese to incorporate.  Once pasta is finished return to pan and stir in the cheese mixture, followed by the pesto and remaining peas that have been thawing on the counter.  Stir until combined and serve immediately topped with grated cheese and fresh cracked pepper to taste.

Mom has been known to eat the leftovers cold as a pasta salad the next day for lunch.  If you try this recipe, please let us know how it turns out!  Enjoy!

Basil and Mint Pesto Fusilli with Peas

June 13, 2017
: 6
: 30 min
: 30 min
: 30 min
: Easy


  • 4 oz Basil (one large container)
  • 1/4 Cup Mint (loosely packed and heaping)
  • 1/4 Cup Pine Nuts
  • 1-1/2 C Parmesan/Reggiano, divided
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Pepper
  • 1-1/2 C Frozen Peas, divided
  • 3 Cloves Garlic
  • 1/2 C Olive Oil
  • 1TBS Butter
  • 1/4 C Heavy Cream
  • 16 oz Fusilli (we use Tru Roots, Ancient Grains)
  • Step 1 Wash and dry basil and mint and place in food processor.
  • Step 2 Add pine nuts, 1/2 cup grated parmesan/reggiano cheese, salt, pepper, 1/2 cup peas and garlic.
  • Step 3 Process until blended. Slowly drizzle in 1/2 cup of oil until desired consistency.
  • Step 4 Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package instructions and remove from heat when al dente.
  • Step 5 In a separate saucepan melt butter and heavy cream.
  • Step 6 Once butter is melted add remaining 1 Cup of Parmesan/Reggiano and stir until cheese is melted and combined.
  • Step 7 Drain pasta and return to pan.
  • Step 8 Add remaining 1 cup of peas.
  • Step 9 Pour melted butter/cream mixture over pasta and then stir in Pesto Mixture until incorporated.
  • Step 10 Serve immediately with fresh pepper and parmesan/reggiano cheese.