Here we are. Irene and I, all smiles, embarking on a culinary adventure together. Irene hired me to prepare 2 weeks of dinners for her and her husband. Fully cooked, ready to heat & eat, and all healthy and delicious!
We had a blast choosing recipes. Irene chose from a few of her favorites and also from The Healthy Edge online library that are all gluten-free and most are also dairy-free. This made it easy to put together a two week meal plan that is healthy AND delicious!
Irene has a well-stocked pantry. We went through all the recipes and pulled spices, canned goods, condiments, etc. that she already had. She also sent me home with storage containers to bring back the food ready to heat & eat.
Sicilian Bean and Potato Salad is one of Irene’s husband’s favorite side dishes. We chose it, but I realized later it wasn’t a good idea because it wouldn’t freeze well. Irene decided to make it herself because with her time freed up not worrying about dinner, she could make a side dish or dessert more easily.
This Indian Curry recipe took the place of the bean and potato salad. I made it with pork (instead of chicken) and pearl barley (instead of orzo). It gave Irene more dinner options which is what she was really looking for.
Back home, I wrote out what was still needed for each recipe. I also put them in order of what I thought is a good 2 week meal plan. From this list, I made the grocery shopping list. Irene already had a beautiful piece of salmon in her freezer so we worked that into the meal plan. What she needed was a marinade/glaze and we found the perfect recipe. All together Irene chose 6 dinner recipes, 2 side dishes and one breakfast. Broken down into individual servings, she and her husband would have dinners and a few lunches for two full weeks and then some!
Irene wanted the flank steak and the salmon marinade for the first part of the meal plan so I delivered those uncooked. The Mediterranean Crunch salad was the prefect side dish for both of these entrees so I delivered that fresh also. Everything else went into the freezer.
Moroccan Chicken with Lentils filled my kitchen with a delicious aroma!
I took very few pictures while cooking. I was focused on getting everything done and delivered in about 3 days. I shopped on a Tuesday, cooked Wednesday and Thursday; and then delivered everything Thursday evening. Next time I’ll take more pictures.
Irene’s freezer! It’s full of items she can pull out for dinner. Some are in individual serving sizes and some are in larger containers for multiple dinners. There’s even enough for lunches. If cooked food is frozen right away, it keeps for about 3 months. When thawed and reheated properly, it’s just as delicious as the day it was made.
Barbecued Salmon was the second dinner in Irene’s meal plan. Since she no longer had an outdoor grill, she used her broiler pan and oven. This is a great option for anyone who doesn’t have an outdoor grill. She told me this salmon was tasty!
Stress-free healthy meals on-hand = Peace of mind.