Meal plan: 10 November

Monday: Leftover steak and lettuce wrap; pastry triangles with beef mince, leftover choko and swede and pear ketchup

Tuesday: Pear teacake (apple teacake recipe from Thermomix’s Everyday Cookbook, using fresh pear instead of apple and no nuts); Creamy swede and lentil soup with foccacia

Wednesday: Leftover soup; Lasagne and green salad

Thursday: Baked chicken thighs, rice and green beans with potato and leek soup

Friday: Rice paper rolls with chicken, cashews and mango (amines)

Saturday: Stirfry beef strips with pear ketchup, choko, bamboo shoots, bean sprouts and tiger rice (mixed brown and white rice)

Sunday: Baked oatmeal; sausages, leek and lettuce rolls

Shopping list for 10 November:

Supermarket: mountain bread, Pampas puff pastry, bread flour, yeast, sunflower oil, rice (brown and white), rolled oats, lasagne sheets, rice paper, cashews, tinned bamboo shoots, jar of baby pear puree, carob syrup (for lasagne)

Butcher (buy fresh each day if possible): beef mince (500g for pastry triangles, 3kg for lasagne), chicken breast for Tuesday’s soup, chicken thighs (500g for Thursday + extra for leftovers), beef strips (for Saturday), lamb mince (for Sunday sausages)

Greengrocer: pears, celery, swede, potatoes, leeks, lettuce, celery, choko, green beans, parsley and chives (or from garden), mango, bean sprouts.

So how did the meal plan work? Well, I usually stick to it pretty closely until Thursday, though I did make choc chip cookies from the Thermomix Everyday Cookbook instead of pear teacake on Tuesday (no nuts or dairy and half the mixture without choc chips for my failsafers and half the mixture with dairy-free choc chips for my guests). On Thursday, we had a hectic day so ate fettucine with leftover lasagne mince mixture (cooked on Wed then frozen overnight and defrosted in microwave). On Friday I marinated and cooked chicken thighs in the Thermomix and had rice and steamed green beans, with a side of potato and leek soup with added purple cabbage (a great colour, though eldest son was not impressed!). Saturday we had chicken, leek and potato pizza for lunch (leftover marinated chicken, again frozen overnight and defrosted in microwave). Sunday we had baked oatmeal for breakfast and my husband made some potato wedges and cooked steak on the BBQ for lunch. Dinner will probably be a stir fry with beef mince and similar veg to what I had planned on Saturday.

Is it worth having a meal plan? Yes! Much less stressful than trying to think of something every day, but worth being flexible in case my activities change, I need to make do with pantry goods and because even though I am cooking every day, it is still fun to be spontaneous!

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