Apr 22: Ham, Tomato & Garlic Spread Sandwich; Seared Sea Scallops with Avocado and Mango Salad

Lunch

We had to repeat yesterday’s tomato and garlic spread, but today we added more garlic spread, and some shaved ham.

  • Baked ham is 63c per serve and we shared half a serve, or 16c
  • Two slices of bread are 32c per serve
  • Five kumato were $3.49 and we used one, or 35c per serve
  • The garlic spread is $2.99 for the container and we used about 1/10 or 15c per serve.

Two tasty sandwiches for 98c per serve.

Dinner

A return to a favorite meal: Seared Sea Scallops with an Avocado Mango salad.

Foodie Greg prepared the scallops by defrosting then salting and drying between two sheets of paper toweling to reduce moisture on the scallops, which helps the sear.

We had a different mango – a honey mango – that we preferred because this variety, while small, is less sweet than the more common Haden (from Mexico) that we get around here.

  • Frozen wild caught seas scallops were $14.99 or $7.50 per serve
  • Baby spinach was $2.50 and we used half, or 63c per serve
  • Three honey mangos were 99c or 50c per serve
  • The avocado was $2.99 for a bag of five or 60c per serve
  • Add 20c for dressing.

The scallops were seared and translucent and the honey mangos in the salad elevated it. All in all a good meal for $9.43 per serve.

Apr 21: Tomato & Garlic Spread Toasted Sandwich; Ham and Semi-dried Tomato “Cobb”

Lunch

We have discovered Trader Joe’s Garlic Spread/Dip and it goes very well with tomatoes in a toasted sandwich. Very well.

  • Two slices of bread are 32c per serve
  • Five kumato were $3.49 and we used one, or 35c per serve
  • The garlic spread is $2.99 for the container and we used about 1/10 or 15c per serve.

Two tasty sandwiches for 82c per serve.

Dinner

Tonight we created another Cobb Salad variation using ham and moon kissed (semi-dried) tomatoes, along with avocado, egg and burrata on a bed of dress spinach.

  • The bake ham is 63c per serve and we had 1/2 serve each, or 32c per serve.
  • A pastured egg is 50c
  • We substituted semi-dried tomatoes – about ⅓ each of the $2.79 of tomatoes we dehydrated, or 93c per serve
  • Spinach is $1.99 and we used 1/8 or 13c per serve
  • The avocado was $2.99 for a bag of five or 60c per serve
  • The burrata was $4.99 for two, or $2.50 per serve.

Tonight’s Cobb Salad was a good variation for $4.98 per serve.

Apr 20: Afghani Pita Pockets; Tostadas with Avocado, Cuban Black Beans, Fried Egg and Salsa

Lunch

It’s been a while since we had the pita pockets from Skewers Halal, who’s servings are huge for $9.80 per serve, including tax., The chicken and beef were as good as they always have been.

Dinner

After such a large lunch we opted for something simpler and smaller for dinner, settling on tostadas smeared with avocado, onto which were piled Cuban style black beans, topped with a fried egg and garnished with salsa and cotija.

  • The tostadas are 22 for $2.29 or 21c per serve
  • Pastured eggs are 50c each, or $1.00 per serve
  • The beans are $1.00 per can or 50c per serve
  • The avocados are $2.99 for five, or 30c per serve
  • Add 40c for salsa and a dusting of cotija cheese.

Dinner was very tasty and a lot more filling than you’d think. A good meal for $2.41 per serve.

Apr 19: Ham, Avocado & Shallot; Bone In Pork Chop with Apple & Endive Salad

Lunch

We repeated the ham and avocado sandwich from yesterday, but added thinly sliced shallot and toasted the sandwich. It was a big improvement on yesterdays’.

  • Two slices of bread are 32c per serve
  • The bake ham is 63c per serve and we had ⅛ serve each, or 8c per serve.
  • The avocados are $2.99 for five, or 30c per serve
  • Add 25c for mustard aioli and shallot.

Today’s sandwich was a big improvement on yesterday’s. The shallot provided a little crunch for textual variation and created an almost Asian flavor overtone that was quite interesting for 95c per serve.

Dinner

A favorite, and huge meat blowout, are the bone in pork chops from Prather Ranch. Like all Prather Ranch meat these are dry aged and very tender when sous vidé to the perfect temperature and then fried off in butter!

The Apple and Endive salad was a perfect accompaniment providing crisp tartness and a little bitterness.

  • The pork chops were $11.08 per serve
  • The Opal apple was $1.29 or 65c per serve
  • The three pack of Belgian Endive was $2.69 but we only used two, or 45c per serve
  • Add 50c for dressing ingredients.

While expensive at $12.68, this was an excellent meal that would have been 4-5 times more expensive at a restaurant.

 

Apr 18: Ham & Avocado Sandwiches; Black Pepper Beef with Brown Rice

Lunch

For the first time in months we didn’t toast our sandwich! Today’s ham, avocado and mustard sandwiches were enjoyed outside.

  • Two slices of bread are 32c per serve
  • The bake ham is 63c per serve and we had ⅛ serve each, or 8c per serve.
  • The avocados are $2.99 for five, or 30c per serve
  • Add 20c for mustard aioli.

Today’s sandwich needed a little crunch but was otherwise okay for 90c per serve.

Dinner

For dinner we returned to a favorite: black pepper beef with brown rice.

  • Just over a pound of “beef for fajita” from our Prather Ranch delivery was $14.13 or $7.06 per serve
  • The pack of bell peppers was $2.49 or $1.25 per serve
  • Onion and garlic add 25c per serve
  • Add 50c for the other ingredients
  • Add 33c for brown rice.

Dinner tonight was very acceptable: tasty and filling without being amazing! Not bad for $9.39 per serve

Apr 17: Split Pea Soup with Ham; Red Wine and Mushroom Meatloaf with Roast Kabocha Squash and Asparagus

Lunch

For lunch we finished the split pea soup from late last month. We cubed some ham and added that for texture and flavor variation.

  • The split pea soup is 43c per serve
  • The bake ham is 63c per serve and we had ⅛ serve each, or 8c per serve.

Lunch today was filling and tasty for 51c per serve.

Dinner

For dinner we sliced the red win and mushroom meatloaf, fried the slices  in butter and served with roast kabocha squash and asparagus. Mostly a repeat of elements from the last two night’s meals.

  • The meatloaf is $6.77 per serve
  • The organic asparagus was $4.07 and we served half, or $1.02 per serve.
  • The kabocha squash was $1.49 and we served half or 38c per serve.

The meatloaf is definitely better fried off because of the additional Maillard reaction on the surface. We preferred the sugar snap peas to the asparagus but both are good. Overall, a very satisfying and tasty meal for $8.17 per serve.

Apr 16: Random; Baked Ham with Mushroom Brown Rice Pilaf and Asparagus

Lunch

Our odd scheduling today had us eating at different time, and pretty much what we could grab. Foodie Greg had a crisp bread with Swiss and pickles, while Philip had the remainder of some Trader Joe’s Wine Country Chicken Salad.

  • The salad is $3.99 for 11.5 oz, and there was 4.5 oz left, or $1.56 per serve.

Dinner

Before Easter we picked up one of Ralph’s ‘loss leader’ hams for 99c per pound and today we baked it.  The ham will cover at least 12 very generous serves.

Tonight we paired it with a mushroom brown rice pilaf, which was disappointing, and asparagus, which was not.

  • The ham was $7.81 or 65c per serve
  • The mushrooms were $2.49 or $1.25 per serve
  • Brown rice adds 33c per serve
  • The organic asparagus was $4.07 and we served half, or $1.02 per serve.

The ham remained moist and tasty while the asparagus worked well with it. The pilaf lacked flavor and was disappointing, but overall a good meal for $3.25 per serve.

Apr 15: Baked Eggs; Red Wine and Mushroom Meatloaf with Roast Kabocha Squash and Sugar Snap Peas

Lunch

Being a Sunday lunch we often experiment with something new. Today we tried a baked egg recipe, which is simply some spinach, cream and eggs in a ramekin with some cheese sprinkled on top. We served with a slice of “fry” bread.

  • Two eggs are $1.00 per serve
  • The slice of bread is 16c
  • Butter adds 20c
  • Heavy cream was $1.79 and we used a fraction, or 10c per serve
  • Spinach adds 5c per serve
  • A sprinkling of grated cheddar adds 50c per serve.

We enjoyed today’s lunch for $2.01 per serve.

Dinner

Tonight we cooked the meatloaf originally planned for Friday night. It’s a favorite and tonight we served with roast kabocha squash and sugar snap peas.

The recipe makes four generous serves.

  • The dry aged ground beef was $19.42 or $4.86 per serve
  • Sliced portobello mushrooms were $2.49 or 63c per serve
  • Onions and garlic add 20c per serve
  • Two large eggs are $1.00 or 25c per serve
  • The butter is $3.99 per block, and we used about 3/8 for four serves, or 38c per serve
  • Red wine adds $1.00 or 25c per serve
  • Add 20c for Worcestershire sauce and other spices per serve
  • The kabocha squash was $1.94 and we used half, or 97c per serve
  • The sugar snap peas were $2.99 and we used half, or 75c per serve.

The meatloaf was excellent, although – ironically given our recent experience at Peggy Sue’s Diner – needed a little more bread, as we ran out of panko breadcrumbs! The kabocha squash is a tasty starch while the sugar snap peas provide a fresh crunch. A good meal for $8.49 per serve.

Apr 14: Moon Touched Tomatoes with Swiss; Beef Top Sirloin with Peanut Sauce, Black Rice and Bean Sprout Salad

Lunch

Our toasted sandwiches today were both “Moon Touched” (aka semi-dried)  cherry tomatoes with Swiss cheese and mayo.

  • Two slices of bread are 32c per serve
  • The bag of baby manzano tomato was $2.79 and we used about 1/3 or 47c per serve
  • Swiss slices are 12 for $3.99 or 17c per serve
  • Add 20c for mayo.

It was a really good sandwich, proving that simple can be great if the ingredients are top notch, for $1.16 per serve.

Dinner

Since it was both warm enough to grill and to eat outside, we postponed the meatloaf again, and opted for Top Sirloin with Peanut (Satay) sauce. The marinade is well worth the effort because it improves the flavor and promotes the grill marks.

The sprouts and cucumber salad was an experiment. It was nice enough but felt incomplete: like it could be enhanced in some way.

  • The steak was $12.79 or $6.40 per serve
  • The cucumber was 49c or 25c per serve
  • The bean sprouts were $1.49 or 75c per serve
  • Add 50c for the marinade ingredients
  • Add 30c for dressing ingredients
  • Black rice adds 44c per serve.

The star of the meal was definitely the steak and satay sauce. The salad and rice were good backup flavors, but the salad needs something more. All up a good meal for $9.39 per serve.

 

 

Apr 13: Bahn Mi; Poached Egg with Vegetable Gyoza in Ginger Miso Broth

Lunch

We needed no excuse to get a Bahn Mi.  As always, it’s a great sandwich for $8.50 per serve.

Dinner

Although we had planned meatloaf, the day got away and we ran out of time. Our fallback combo is mostly from Trader Joe’s: Frozen Vegetable Gyoza and Ginger Miso Broth. We poached an egg in the broth for protein and unctuousness.

  • The Miso Ginger broth was $1.99 or $1.00 per serve
  • The gyoza were $3.99 and, or $2.00 per serve
  • Add 20c for seasonings.
  • A pastured egg is 50c.

Tonight’s meal was excellent. Really tasty and full of Thai flavors for $3.70 per serve, and on the table in about 20 minutes.