Meals a la Tobe! #1

07 Aug

Does this meal plan look familiar?  It should.  I posted this last Sunday.  After posting it, I thought…. now that’s silly.  Why would I post a meal plan before I make those things?  I don’t know if the recipes are good.  I don’t have any pretty pictures to put with my post.  So, I’ve decided to post my meal plans after the week.  This way I can add comments and pictures.  So enjoy! Recipes are from This Week for Dinner.


Bertolli frozen shrimp and linguine meal (I was being kind of lazy)


— Pork chops

I marinate them all day in soy sauce, olive oil, vinegar, garlic powder, minced onion, cumin, basil, oregano (I think that’s it), then we grill them on the BBQ.

— Green beans

— Rice

— Rolls

Notice the yummy mug of rye porter beer from Peace Tree Brewery sitting next to my plate.  Awesomeness is a mug!  Overall a very good dinner.  Easy to fix.  Satisfying to eat.  Going into my “to keep” pile of recipes.


— Leftovers/out (J’s standing meeting with business partners leaves me alone to scavenge or go grab something quick.  I opted for leftover pork chops this night.)


— Orange chicken

– 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
– 1/2 C flour
– 1/2 t. salt
– 1/2 t. pepper
– 3 T butter

– 2 T brown sugar
– 2 T vinegar
– 1 C orange juice
– 1 t. nutmeg
– 1 t. dried basil
– 1 small can mandarin oranges
– Jane Note: I add ground ginger as well. I also 1.5 X the sauce ingredients.

Combine flour, salt and pepper in bag. Shake chicken pieces until coated. Brown on both sides in butter in skillet over medium heat. Drain off fat.

Combine sauce ingredients (1 1/2 times the recipe) and add to skillet. Cover and simmer ~30 minutes or until tender. For a “sophisticated touch” add drained mandarin oranges and heat about 5 mins.

Note: cook chicken and sauce in covered skillet, but tip the cover a little to thicken sauce towards the end of cooking time.

— Rice

— Carrots

Mini carrots in a saucepan, with the lid on, with butter and dried basil. I also add a bit of salt & pepper. Cook on med-low until done. Pat turns the heat up at the end to “burn” the outsides a bit.

— Peas

I forgot to take a picture until i had already started eating.  Sorry!  Well the chicken tasted great, but the recipe didn’t quite go as planned.  The sauce was supposed to thicken to more of a glaze, but it turned out very thin.  Next time I might just have to cook the sauce separately until it starts to thicken.  The rice was leftover from Monday night.  Thank goodness for rice steamers that also keep it warm for two days.  I love that thing now.  The carrots were quite done enough, but were still very good.


— Tacos

No picture tonight.  Easy simple dinner. I did try my hand at making my own taco seasoning.  I got a recipe randomly from the internet and changed it to suit what we had in the cupboards. It’s got a little kick to it, but J and I like spicy so not problem there.  After eating, I made a 3-5 dinner batch of seasoning to put in the cupboard.  And look at me planning for my forgetfulness, I taped the recipe to the baggie.


— Leftover/out

I was lazy and we’d eaten all the leftovers.  So J took me to P.F. Chang’s.  It’s pretty unbelievable, but I’ve never been there before.  I got Mandarin Chicken.  Decent, but not as good as other establishments, like The Mandarin back in Fort Wayne.  The dinner was okay, but I think overall the restaurant is too high priced for the quality.  So we are on a hunt to find a great Chinese restaurant in Omaha.  J hasn’t found an amazing one yet, but a couple of good ones.  We’ll keep trying.


— Salmon

— Black bean and corn salad

From Rachael Ray’s “365: No Repeats”
4 T olive oil
1 med red onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 – 1 t red pepper flakes
1 t ground cumin
salt and pepper
Juice of 2 limes
3 T honey
1 t chili powder
4 6-oz salmon fillets
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 10-oz box frozen corn kernels, defrosted
1/2 C chicken stock or broth
1 15-oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
2-3 T fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
6 C baby spinach

Preheat medium skillet over medium heat with 2 T of oil. Add onions, garlic, red pepper flakes, cumin, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 mins.

While the onions are cooking, preheat a medium non-stick skillet over medium-high heat with the remaining 2 T oil. In a shallow dish, combine the juice of 1 lime, honey, chili powder, salt and pepper. Add the salmon fillets to the lime-honey mixture and toss to coat thoroughly. Add the seasoned salmon to the hot skillet and cook until just cooked through, 3-4 mins on each side.

To the make salad, add the bell peppers and corn kernels to the onion mixture and cook for 1 min. Add the chicken stock and continue to cook for another 2 minutes. Add the black beans and cook until the beans are just heated through. Remove the skillet from the heat and add the juice of the second lime, the cilantro and spinach. Toss to wilt the spinach and then taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve the salmon on the warm salad.

A good dinner.  Very light and refreshing.  I just thought it was missing a little something.  Maybe more lime juice and less honey.  Or maybe more garlic.  Or maybe more chili powder.  J remarked that if we ate stuff like this more often, we’d lost weight.  True, very true, and yet I can’t give up my other less than healthy choice.

Week summary/comments: I didn’t burn anything.  I didn’t cut myself.  I created multiple eatable dinners.  I’d say this week was a success cooking wise.  Looking forward to my new week of cooking adventures.  And if you want to share any interesting recipes, favorites, or general comments… please do!


Posted by on August 7, 2011 in Life



2 responses to “Meals a la Tobe! #1

  1. lynn freeman

    August 7, 2011 at 12:14 pm

    Tobe_ thanks for the recipes 🙂 I use a lot of recipes from or the Kraft food and family magazine. Every single recipe I have used from there has turned out fabulous.

  2. Tobe

    August 7, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    You’re welcome Lynn! I’ll have more each week. I’m trying to do different stuff. It could be fabulous or dangerous. Stand back, I’m cooking!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: