Since spending January rewatching Friends on Netflix I have discovered that I am Monica. I always knew I connected with her on some level but it turns out, I am actually her. My husband even bought me a label maker for Christmas, and it was my favourite present! So today I thought I would fully embrace the Monica in me and bring you a blog post all about how I plan our meals.
I am the main organiser, cook and shopper in our household. There are only 2 of us that live here and if my husband had to do it we would starve to death. So, every Saturday I sit down armed with a cuppa, calendar, BBC good food, a pad, a pen, Google Keep and get to work.
A few words about our diet: We are meat eaters, don’t eat much fish, we have no allergies (I have a light intolerance to gluten or wheat, nothing serious). I try and follow a low carb diet. We eat 3 meals a day and try not to snack. I always cook from scratch and rarely use tinned or jar sauces as I like to be in control of what I put in our food. We sometimes batch cook and ALWAYS freeze leftovers! As I am sometimes away with work I do try and meal prep whenever I need to.
So first things first, I head over to our diary and see what our schedule looks like for the week ahead. Myself and my husband have a shared google diary that we can both edit and we live by the mantra “If it’s not in the diary it doesn’t exist”. From this I can see when we are both home or if only 1 of us is at home and plan accordingly. This week is a pretty standard week, we are both home most nights, we are having my parents round for dinner on Friday and Adam is out on Saturday night. Usually I will start by asking Adam if there is usually anything he would like.
There isn’t. Thanks for the help.
So I turn to good old trusty BBC good food. I have a profile and hundreds of saved recipes. I can usually find something on there.
It’s always dinners I struggle with as our breakfast and lunches are pretty much the same. Breakfast is always Granola and Muesli with yoghurt and of a weekend we have eggs. For lunch we pretty much live off salads. Every Sunday I roast a whole chicken and we will spend Sunday nights pulling every possible piece of meat off the bone and putting it in to a Tupperware box. Rock and Roll. Obviously we have to feed some to the cat. We use this chicken as the base for salads throughout the week. And I will sometimes throw some in an omelette.
As I mentioned before I am trying (and sometimes failing) to be ‘low carb’. This is quite easy to follow but as carbs have been a huge part of my life, trying to avoid them can be difficult. I always have lots of veg with my meals. I try and avoid veg that is too ‘carby’. For example; replace onions with shallots; don’t eat sweetcorn; use Celeriac instead of mash BUT I do fail and have been known to go on a carb rampage because after all, I am human. When I am meal planning I always do carbs for Adam as he eats them. It does mean cooking 2 or 3 different sides but it’s no biggie. Follow my low carb journey here.
After changing my mind at least 7,658,000 times, I jot down all my ideas for meals and also jot down Adam’s sides in my writing pad. Once all our meals have been decided I write the shopping list. I write every ingredient we need for each meal after I’ve sent Adam into the kitchen to check what we already have in the cupboard. I then write down another shopping list which is pretty much our weekly staples. I know this list off the top of my head, it rarely changes but I still write it down every week without fail. Weird, I know.
Then once I have fully decided I write them all down in Google Keep. I use Google Keep for my shopping list as it’s boss and you can give yourself little check boxes. Small things! I go to Aldi for the main bulk of my shopping for 5 reasons:
- I love it.
- It’s cheap.
- The produce is amazing.
- I love how fast the shop assistant’s scan your shopping.
- Aldi Special buys.
I also write down my shopping list in the order of the shop, this is a top tip. Speeds up your shopping and saves you more time to wander in the Special Buy aisle. You’re welcome.
Sometimes I can’t get everything I need from Aldi and do have to nip to Tesco’s. It’s usually for Avocados. Aldi’s ripen at home Avocados never ripen. Ever.
You can leave them in the airing cupboard for weeks and they will still be rock solid. #firstworldproblems
Happy eating folks!