Menu Plan Monday!
You will notice a couple of things about my menus. For one thing, I don’t like fish. Sorry. I have tried it, many forms, many times.  I just can’t get myself to like it.  I think it’s a texture thing. Secondly, after six years as an obese vegetarian, I realized that it’s not the right diet for everyone, and I am now a confirmed meat-lover. 

I share recipes that I have developed myself, but if I don’t share a recipe for something, it’s usually because I found it on the internet somewhere. Most likely,  I would LOVE it if you would share some of your favorite recipes with me too. I love to try new ones.

Monday: Grilled Ham and Cheese with Soup (Cooked by my 11 YO.)

Tuesday: Lemon-Basil Chicken with Angel Hair Pasta and Sautéed Veggies
Wednesday: Pot Roast, Green Beans and Creamer Potatoes
Thursday: Orange Chicken, Broccoli and Brown Rice (Cooked by my 14 YO.)
Friday: Fend for yourself! (Leftovers)
Saturday: Pollo a la Mexicana (Recipe below) with brown rice
Sunday: Spaghetti, with Italian Meatballs (my hubby’s recipe below) and Spinach salad.

Oh, and you will find my FREE Menu-Planning Resources (shoppnig lists, menu planners) HERE. (Clicking will open a new window.)
Spaghetti and Meatballs
Javier’s Amazing Italian Meatballs

  • ¾ pound ground beef
  • ¾ pound Italian sausage
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan/Romano cheese
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp. salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1 cup milk

  1. Combine beef, sausage in a large bowl.  Add garlic, eggs, cheese, parsley, salt and pepper.
  2. Blend bread crumbs into meat mixture. Slowly add the milk 1/2 cup at a time. The mixture should be very moist but still hold its shape if rolled into meatballs.
  3. Shape into 1 ½ in. meatballs.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 – 25 minutes. After this, I like to brown them under the broiler for 5 minutes, but Javier thinks this is unnecessary.  I guess you will have to decide for yourself.
Pollo a la Mexicana
Pollo a la Mexicana (Mexican Chicken)
I created this recipe after we moved to Colorado from California, and I was missing my favorite Mexican restaurant, where I used to order this dish.

Chicken and Sauce
  • 2 tbsp.  oil (I use coconut oil or grape seed oil---oils that are not corrupted at high temps.)
  • 4 boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced (or 2 tsp. granulated garlic)
  • 1 white onion peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium bell pepper sliced (I prefer red or yellow. Seeds and stem removed)
  • 2 cups (from a 29 oz. can) tomato sauce
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder (or for more heat, use chipotle chili powder!)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  • Salt to taste (about 1 - 2 teaspoons.)
  • 1 ½  cups brown rice (Just because it's healthier)
  • 1 ½  cups water (add 1/8 cup more for high elevation)
  • 1 ½  cups chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp. tomato paste (Optional. It will give the rice a reddish appearance)
  • 2 tbsp. oil (I use coconut oil or grape seed oil---oils that are not corrupted at high temps.)
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. granulated garlic, or 1 clove fresh, minced.
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • Salt to taste ( I use about a teaspoon)
Optional additions
  • 10 - 12 corn or flour tortillas, warmed (optional)
  • 1 - 1 1/2 cups sour cream (optional, garnish)
  • 1 - 1 1/2 cups guacamole (optional, garnish)
  1. Put brown rice, water, broth and seasonings in to pot on high heat for cooking the rice. When the water boils, turn down the heat to low and simmer, covered, for 45 minutes. (Until most of the moisture has evaporated.)
  2. Cut chicken breasts into pieces. Trim off and discard excess fat. (I cut mine with scissors into bite-size pieces)
  3. Set a large frying pan over medium heat. When hot, add oil and tilt pan to coat bottom. Add chicken in a single layer and brown for 3 - 5 minutes.
  4. Add onion, garlic, and bell peppers to chicken pan; stir often and cook 3 - 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and add broth, 2 cups tomato sauce, seasonings, and chopped cilantro. Simmer for 12 - 15 minutes, until chicken is thoroughly cooked.
  5. While chicken is simmering, remove tortillas from package and warm on a plate with a clean dish towel over them. We spray the towel with a little water from a squirt bottle to "steam" the tortillas in the microwave. Microwave on high for 30 seconds. If they are not warm enough, turn tortillas over, recover and cook on high for another 30 seconds.They can also be warmed on a skillet for a couple of minutes each.
  6. When the chicken is done, it looks lovely served on a platter over the rice, and garnished with 2-3 whole cilantro leaves. The guacamole and sour cream (2-3 tablespoons for each person) can be served on the side of each plate, to each person's taste.