Week 15: Kicking off with Comfort Food

This week was all about the comfort, from starting each day with chocolaty oatmeal to kicking off the week with a semi-home-cooked classic dinner. “Self-care” is very trendy right now, and for me, part of that is using food to help take care of myself—physically, of course, but emotionally too.

Had in kitchen: 1 can refried beans, (6) precooked meatballs, instant jasmine rice, garlic, few handfuls spinach, Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, olive oil, 1/4 jar salsa, cocoa powder, maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, sliced almonds, chopped pecans

Bought: Elbow pasta, 1 can stewed tomatoes, sweet potato chips, 1 can diced green chilis, 1 can black beans, 1 can corn, 1 jar Alfredo sauce, 1 canister old fashioned oats, 1 32 oz can chicken broth, 1 bag carrots, 1 bag chopped broccoli florets, 1 avocado, 1 container sliced mixed berries, 1 yellow onion, 1 bag chopped Lacinto kale, tomatoes on the vine, fresh mozzarella, ravioli, semisweet chocolate chips, 1/2 gallon milk, 1 block extra sharp cheddar, 1/2 rotisserie chicken

Spent: $49.87 (aka $8.97/day for 3 meals per day)

Daily Breakfast: Hot Chocolate Oatmeal with Nuts and Fresh Berries (see top photo)

MONDAY

Lunch: Avocado Caprese Salad

Dinner: Rotisserie Chicken, “Homemade” Mac n’ Cheese, Sautéed Spinach with Garlic

Comments from Claire: I was feeling a bit down this week and was really in the mood for some comfort food. I had come across this faux homemade mac n’ cheese a while back as a camping recipe, but I keep making it because it tastes a lot better than the packaged version but also doesn’t take nearly as long as a completely homemade recipe. I settled in with this, part of a rotisserie chicken, some sautéed spinach, and a chick flick, and felt a lot better in no time. 🙂

TUESDAY

Lunch: Leftovers

Dinner: Ravioli with Pesto and Garlic Roasted Broccoli

Claire’s Quips: I had some homemade pesto in my freezer from the last time I made a batch, and figured I would make an easy dinner by defrosting it and adding it to some cheese ravioli. To make sure I got my veggies in, I roasted some broccoli and garlic on the side. I’m not sure if I originally froze the pesto after too many days, or if it was just in my freezer for longer than I thought, but it did have a bit of an old taste to it, which was my only quip for this meal!

WEDNESDAY

Lunch: Leftover Ravioli

Dinner: Homemade “Dig Inn” Bowl

Comments from Claire: Dig Inn is a popular lunch spot here in NYC (and I’m sure elsewhere), and they serve hot grain or salad bowls. Whenever I get it, which isn’t too often, I always get it with rice, meatballs, and their mac n’ cheese. I thought of making my own version for dinner since I knew I was going to have leftover mac n’ cheese from Monday night, and had some precooked meatballs in the freezer as well. I made some instant rice I already had in the pantry, and looked on the Dig Inn website to get an idea of what vegetable to add to it. I settled on roasted kale with onions, and ate that with the rice, mac n’ cheese, and the meatballs which I heated with a bit of the leftover Alfredo sauce from Monday with some tomato paste to make a bit of a sauce. It actually came together quite deliciously – a bit to my surprise!

THURSDAY

Lunch: Leftover Bowl

Dinner: Bean Soup/Stew

Comments from Claire: I had a can of refried beans sitting in my cabinet and was looking for a recipe to use them in that wasn’t on the side with tacos or enchiladas. I came across this soup recipe and since it was so easy to make I couldn’t resist. Luckily it was one of those recipes that was really easy and also quite scrumptious. It topped it off with some crumbled sweet potato tortilla chips, chopped avocado and onion, and some shredded cheddar cheese.

FRIDAY

Lunch: Soup

Dinner: Out to Dinner

See you next week! To see what I’m eating in the meantime, follow me on Instagram or Twitter @ClaireLeaden

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