Thursday, December 30, 2010

Adventures with Alex

Oops, I mean Adventures with Mr. Kummerow.  Sorry I just can't help myself when an alliteration is possible!

After a delicious and warming lunch of spring rolls and miso soup we headed out for short trip to Target to get out of the house and purchase a new hair dryer (mine literally went up in smoke this morning!).
Well, a short trip to Target wound up being an afternoon of adventure (another alliteration!).  We had absolutely no will power to return to the house and return to the work that awaited us.  Instead Mr. Kummerow pulled right onto the interstate and we drove to a small town called Hickory.

Mr. Kummerow's mom visited Hickory not too long ago and told us the downtown scene was pretty neat.  It is less than an hour from us so what the heck.  I am supposed to be on vacation after all!

The first place we saw turned out to be the best stop!  The Crushed Olive.
And just as the name implies, this is a store of olive oils!  Many different flavors.  And you get to taste test all of them. 
Mr. Kummerow and I wandered around the little shop sampling everything from Black Truffle Oil (my personal favorite) to Dark Chocolate Balsamic Vinegar (another personal favorite). 
There were so many options and soon my belly was full of oil and bread.  But we couldn't leave empty handed.  We purchased a Wild Mushroom and Sage Olive Oil, recommended for sauteed vegetables and mashed potatoes.  Yes, please!  Those will both be on the menu this week!
On my wish list are the very expensive Truffle Oils and the Vanilla and Dark Chocolate vinegars!

We walked around the cute downtown area but didn't find much else of interest.  We popped into the Emporium which also housed a Healthy Home Market (organic, natural grocery store).  We have one of these close by so we weren't too impressed with the scaled back version in the Emporium.  Thus we walked back to the car after a quick stop in a coffee shop (we were thirsty after all the samples!) and headed back toward home.

One more quick stop before home: Daveste Vineyards.  Sorry, we forgot to take any photos!  For $5 we had a sampling of 6 different wines made right in Mooresville's backyard, Troutman.  All were very tasty and I would love to go back in warmer weather to explore the 54 acre property, complete with hiking trails and lake!

By the time we were nearing home, we were both hungry and not wanting to cook.  We opted to swing by the grocery store for a salad bar and then decided that wouldn't be enough and popped into Jimmy John's for a vegetarian sub.
Each split halvsies and we had ourselves a pretty healthy combo!
Mr. Kummerow insisted on the white bread versus the whole wheat.  I obliged!

Back at home we rested in front of the television before resuming work.  I also completed a meal plan for the week.  It has been months since I have planned a week's worth of meals.  We find we save so much money and energy when everything is planned in advance.  We also have less instances of eating out due to lack of planning (case and point: this evening!).  I planned all of the meals around items we already have in the house from a quick trip to BJ's this week and our Absolute Organics delivery, so my grocery list is quite short:

Black eye peas
Hoagie bread (next weekend)
Sweet Potatoes
Almond Milk

First, I assessed all of the food in house.  Next, I explored my new cookbook: Veganomicon for recipes that included ingredients I already had on hand.  I made a list of all the recipes from the cookbook and otherwise that I wanted to make this week.

Broccoli Millet Croquettes (Veganomicon pg 51)
Tofu scramble w/ hashbrowns
Blueberry Cornmeal Pancakes (Veganomicon pg 76)
Tuna salad (hungry hungry hippy)
Snobby Joes (Veganomicon pg 98)
Mashed potatoes
Broccoli polenta (Veganomicon pg 114)
Mexican millet (Veganomicon pg 118)
Potato broccoli soup (Veganomicon pg 139)
Chickpea noodle soup (Veganomicon pg 139)
BBQ Blackeyed Pea Collard Rolls (Veganomicon pg 175)
Pumpkin Baked Ziti (Veganomicon pg 194)
Banana Wheat Germ Muffins (Veganomicon pg 226)

Then I listed out the days that I needed to plan for.  (I am planning until my next Absolute Organics delivery that comes every other week.)  And I filled in the blanks for all the meals, crossing off the recipes as I went.  You can see I did not use everything, but I keep them on my list, in case I need an extra meal or I switch something out last minute.
B= blueberry cornmeal pancakes
L= leftover spring rolls and soup
D= New Year's Party

B/L= Tofu Scramble with hashbrowns and toast
(bake Banana Wheat Germ Muffins)
D= BBQ Blackeyed Pea Collard Rolls

B= bagels/muffins
L= leftovers/salads
D= Pumpkin Baked Ziti

B= cereal/muffins
L= leftovers
D= Snobby Joe’s and mashed potatoes

B= cereal/muffins
L= leftovers
D= leftovers (Tanya dinner out with girls)

B= cereal/muffins
L= tuna salad
D= Broccoli Millet Croquettes, sautéed spinach

B= cereal/muffins
L= leftovers
D= leftovers

B= cereal/oatmeal
L= leftovers
D= brown rice, sautéed mushrooms, spinach and carrots, tofu

B= cereal/oatmeal
L= veggie burgers and sweet potato fries
D= Potato Broccoli Soup

B= bagels
L= leftovers
D= Meatball Subs

B= cereal/oatmeal
L= broccoli cheese soup (freezer)
D= leftovers (Tanya board meeting)

B= cereal/oatmeal
L= veggie burgers
D= Mexican Millet, black beans and veggies

As you can see, we are all planned out for 1/3 of the month!  
Do you plan your meals in advance? How do you make your list and do you stick to it?

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