Saturday, August 6, 2011

LittleTomato Plants & Crock-Pot Cooking Week

My husband just asked me~~Did you see your Tomato plants?  I said, "What tomato plants?"  My son planted a pizza garden in his Pre-K class over a year ago for mother's day.  He's going into First grade now, so it was a while ago.  We didn't even bother planting a garden this year, since we're really just not good at it.  The year we had his pizza garden, we did some other plants too, but his were the only things that survived.  The teacher and I joked that it was because it was started at a church~~he went to a Christian school at the time.  Well, last year, my husband just knocked the plants over into the flower bed.  This year, he ran over the whole area with a Bobcat because he got rid of all the flower beds where we're building the addition onto our house.  Those little suckers must have fallen into the ground and re-grown themselves.  I didn't even know that tomato plants would come back.  Well, I guess it didn't technically come back.  It must have had a tomato on it when he through it in the flower bed and it dropped a seed.  Funny little tomato plants.
 Right now, my husband is tearing the paneling down and taking the stained glass down off the porch because he is demo-ing it this weekend or next weekend.  And unfortunately, he'll be cutting down our big, gorgeous oak tree.  

It's still hot here, so I came up with a crock-pot/ slowcooker menu for the next week.  We don't have air conditioning and we have an extremely old gas oven.  So, cooking in the oven is out of the question.  And my husband probably wouldn't be very excited about salads every night.  So, I have several cookbooks at home, including several slow cooker cookbooks.  These are the ones I got my recipes from:
 I am in no way affiliated with the publishers or the authors.  I just own a lot of books!  The books I am using are:
Fresh From the Vegetarian Slow Cooker by Robin Robertson  (FFtVSC)
The Italian Slow Cooker by Michelle Scicolone (ISC)
The Everything Healthy Slow Cooker Cookbook by Rachel Rappaport (EHSCC)
Sandra Lee semi-homemade Money Saving Slow Cooking by Sandra Lee (MSSC)
So, here is the menu plan I came up with:

Bell Peppers Stuffed w/Salsa Rice and Beans p.151 FFtVSC
Vegetable Tian w/Herbes de Provence p.172 FFtVSC
Salmon w/ Basil and Lemon p. 93 (ISC)
"Big Meatball" Meat Loaf p. 154 (ISC)
Mushroom Turkey Breast p.152 (EHSCC)
Chicken Broccoli Mac 'N Cheese p.180 (MSSC)
Copacabana Chicken p. 196 (MSSC)

I have a lot of the ingredients, but I'll be going to the store tomorrow to get most of the stuff.  I'll have to see how the price comparison will be to my other method of shopping/cooking.  I used to be a stockpiler.  But, haven't been lately.  We need to stick to a $400/ month grocery budget, but I'm sure we never do.  So, I hope I don't get hit with sticker shock tomorrow.  Next time I do this, I'll have to plan my menu around what's on sale at the stores.  But, just don't have time for that right now!

What do you guys cook when the weather gets too hot for the oven?

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