Monday, January 06, 2014

End of the year menu plans

Despite making some fine meals to close out the year, I haven't had a chance to put them on the blog. Following Christmas, we had an assortment of leftovers to use up. We also felt a strong desire to make some healthy dishes to round out the many feasts of the holidays. Here's how our week closed out --

This lentil dish was outstanding! Black lentils (cooked in stock and thyme) with a vinaigrette that included mint and topped with feta.  A day or two later, we paired the leftover lentils with some boudin blanc (basically a white sausage), which was another fun meal (though not pictured).

black lentils

Using up leftover prime rib is harder than you think. Rather than make it the star of the meal - like it was on Christmas Eve - we wanted to find a way to incorporate it into something else. Our plan was to freeze the leftovers and eventually use them for tacos. With the little that remained, we whipped up a wedge salad as our main course and just had a side of prime rib as sort of an afterthought. (no pics of this). 

After a big meal the Saturday before New Years (new Italian restaurant that had a killer seafood stew!), I made some roasted red pepper hummus. We had this last Sunday along with fresh cucumber, cherry tomatoes and leftover feta cheese. Big Girl even declared that she liked the hummus - and made herself mini hummus sandwiches on crackers. Wish I had a pic of this. 

Since I made a lot of roasted red pepper that week, we used some on a homemade pizza Monday night. It was easy since I already had dough and sauce in the freezer and goat cheese and shallots on hand. 

The red pepper extravaganza didn't end there. On NYE, to ring in the new year, we made a red pepper/goat cheese/thyme frittata to test out our (new!) 10 inch non-stick fry pan (courtesy of Santa Claus). It took A LOT of eggs (a good dozen) but we have leftovers that will make for another tasty meal. This meal wasn't complete with a side of mixed greens dressed with anchovy vinaigrette (awesome!) and a glass (or two) of champagne. 

My mom also hosted a NYE lunch that included a delicious bowl of chili (if you haven't been following the weather, it's downright arctic here!). Because I wasn't about to leave her house without leftovers, we had to come up with something to do with the chili. One of my favorite things to do with in this situation is to make a layer dip out of things like refried beans, scallions, cheese, sour cream, avocado, and salsa. We had all of the above except refried instead we mixed some rice with a orzo/quinoa/chickpea mix and added that instead. I feel that upped the health quotient even though this meal doesn't quite fall under the umbrella of "healthy."

there's chili in there!
We had a few more big meals recently (including Grandma's birthday celebration and Baby J's Baptism) so now I have a feeling we will be operating under the "beans and greens" theme for the rest of January.

I'll be back with a health update when I can - it's been quite a wild start to my New Year!


jillconyers said...

Reading this is making me hungry! Now I'm in the mood for chili :)

Thanks for linking up!

Mommy Run Fast said...

Oh yum! Your chili dip is so creative and looks fantastic. Glad you had a good holiday!!

Jess said...

Jerry makes a delicious soup out of leftover prime rib (with gnocchi) and I love it!

All your meals look and sound great!