Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Beginnings - Meal Plan for January 1-7, 2012

After the cookies, the prime rib, the crab, the mussels, the decadent breakfasts and the tour of Bay Area burger joints it was time for my family to wave the white flag of unhealthy dining during the holidays. I couldn't wait for December to be over with because I just wanted to go back to our old routine of simple breakfasts, straightforward lunches and dinners... without meat.

But just for one week.

This isn't revolutionary, but after 31 days of indulgence we all could use a little penance for our meaty ways. I will admit, though, when I first created this menu it had three dinners with seafood as the main entree and my husband called my bluff when he saw the menu, "It's not vegetarian if there is seafood on the plate," he said. So I rolled my eyes and sighed heavily removed the offending dinners and made it more vegetarian friendly. Below is our week of dinners for January 1-7, 2012. Wish us luck!

Sunday: Spinach feta quiche with salad (from my mother in law, recipe below)

Monday: Veggie burgers with sweet potato fries (From 'Super Natural Cooking,' a fantastic vegetarian cookbook by San Francisco author Heidi Swanson,

Tuesday: Black bean tostadas

Wednesday: Risotto (Jenny! A Twofer that is worthy of our table!)

Thursday: Risotto Cakes (these are a modified, crazy delicious version of Arancini di Riso. My grandmother would be so proud!)

Friday: Salad pizza (with a side of cheese pizza for the kids)

Saturday: Minestrone soup, salad, bread

Spinach Feta Quiche

*This recipe was given to me by my mother in law and I have no idea where it came from, I am guessing its either from Sunset or Bon Appetit, since those are her usual go-to recipe sources.

Pastry for a single crust 9 inch pie
2 packages of frozen chopped spinach, defrosted
6 oz. feta, crumbled (about 3/4 cup)
1/2 cup cottage cheese
6 green onions
1 Tbls. EVOO
1 Tsp. dry basil
1/2 Tsp. pepper
1/2 Tsp. garlic salt
4 eggs
1/2 cup light cream (like half and half) or milk

Line pastry shell with foil and partially fill with dry beans or rice. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 10 minutes. Lift off foil and beans, return crust to oven, and bake until lightly browned about 5 minutes. Let cool.

Meanwhile, squeeze out as much liquid as possible from the defrosted spinach and set aside. Put the feta into a food processor along with cottage cheese, green onions, EVOO, basil, pepper, and garlic salt and process until smooth. Add the eggs and cream and blend again. Pour the mixture into a bowl and stir in the spinach with a wooden spoon to mix well. Pour into baked pastry shell.

Bake pie in 400 degree oven for 20 minutes; reduce temperature to 350 and bake another 10 to 15 minutes or until center jiggles just slightly when pan is gently shaken. Place on a wire rack and let it stand for 15 minutes before cutting into wedges. Makes 4-6 servings.

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