Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Weekly Menu: January 1-7 (with 2 recipes!)

Hi Friends! It's been a while.  Let's get reacquainted with a nice weekly menu, shall we?

This is our first week back to a somewhat normal schedule after family gatherings and holiday eating.

potato leek frittata
pizza with mushrooms and mozzarella and peppers
black bean soup (see recipe below!)
salmon cakes with broccoli (see recipe for salmon cakes below!)
spaghetti with brussel sprouts and parmesan

I cannot remember where this soup recipe came from but I have made it at several times.  It is sooooooo good. You should try it tomorrow!

Creamy Black Bean and Bacon Soup
     Based on this recipe

(I usually make HALF this recipe for 2 dinner sized servings and leftovers for 2 lunches)

5 slices bacon (The bacon adds a nice smoky flavor but the soup is also great without it)
1 cup onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
32oz  vegetable or chicken broth
4 (15-oz.) cans Black Beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14.5-oz.) can diced tomatoes with zesty mild green chiles, undrained  (when making half recipe I just use the whole can of diced tomatoes and chiles.  It is delicious and a little more spicy!)
1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon lime juice
2 cups sweet corn
2 cups heavy whipping cream (I use Half and Half instead of cream to cut the fat and add small splashes until it’s my desired level of creaminess.  I sometimes omit the Half and Half altogether and serve with a dollop of light sour cream, equally delicious.)
   1. Cook bacon in a large Dutch oven until crisp. Remove bacon, cut into bite size pieces and set aside.
   2. Sauté onion and garlic in bacon grease (or olive oil if not using bacon) over medium-high heat 4 to 6 minutes or until tender. Stir in broth and next 4 ingredients, stirring to loosen particles from bottom of Dutch oven; cover and bring to a boil. Uncover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, 8 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in cilantro and lime juice. Let cool 5 minutes.
   3. Process 1/2 of the batch of soup in a large food processor until smooth. Return to the Dutch oven, and stir in corn and bacon pieces. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the 2 cups of heavy whipping cream and heat through, approximately 5 minutes (but do not boil). Remove from heat and serve.

Salmon Cake/Patties
This is a recipe that I just know.  It's not written down anywhere (until now I guess), and my grandmother and my mom have both served it at the dinner table many times. I will try to communicate it here...

1 can salmon, drain, remove bones and skin if found in can.
1 egg
salt and pepper

The rest is all variable... though my grandma might disagree!
cracker crumbs/bread crumbs some other kind of binding agent (tonight I used cornmeal in a pinch)
finely diced carrots, onions, garlic, celery, herbs, spinach...  (I used carrots, onions and spinach tonight).  

Place a few of these veggies in the food processor and chop until they are tiny. 
Combine in a large bowl with salmon, egg, salt and pepper in bowl.
Add cracker/bread crumbs until the liquid is soaked up but not too dry to form into patties.
Form salmon mixture into patties.
Heat oil in a skillet and cook patties until both sides are light brown. 

Top with lemon juice to taste and serve with peas or steamed broccoli.

What dishes do you just know how to make from seeing it made and eating it over and over again while growing up? 


  1. yes...salmon patties...a family tradition. so affordable, easy and quick. and good! sometimes I have used the salmon you can buy in a pouch and have taken from the recipe on the back of the package. it calls for mayo to add to the liquid, as the pouch salmon is not packed in juice. add a little finely chopped celery and sweet red pepper, maybe even a pinch of cayenne pepper. keep the tradition going Allison....

  2. Grew up with my mother's tuna salad, know the ingredients by heart. Tuna, Mayo, chopped onion, chopped sweet pickle, and 4 boiled eggs diced medium!