Meal Plan for March 12-18

 

This week is going to be CRAZY busy for me.  I have plans for Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday night, AND I have to finish prepping and tagging tons of items for a local consignment sale that’s coming up.  So, I needed some easy meals, for sure!  And since I’ll be gone a couple of nights, it was important to plan things my husband has mastered–like pizza and tacos!  Our boys will be thrilled!

meal-plan-for-the-week

Sunday, March 12

Monday, March 13

  • Homemade Pizza

Tuesday, March 14

Wednesday, March 15

  • Salad
  • Whole Red Potatoes
  • Chicken N’ Dumplins  (My favorite, but I’m always afraid I’ll mess up the dumplins!)

Thursday, March 16

  • Tacos

Friday, March 17pork-chops

Saturday, March 18Oven Fried Chicken

So tell me,

What’s for dinner at your house this week?

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FREE PRINTABLES!

meal-planner-image

I have a FREE printable meal planner that I designed in January.  I am LOVING using it each week to plan my meals, and it looks cute on my fridge!  There are also printable recipe cards for a few recipes on this page, that you can download.

3 Quick & Easy Deer Recipes

 

The day is finally here!  I promised to share a few Quick & Easy Deer Recipes for using canned deer meat!  (I will post later about our favorite recipes from our non-canned deer meat.)

Quick Easy Deer Recipes

On Wednesday night this week, we had Open-Faced Roast Deer, so I wanted to walk you through this recipe completely, and then at the end I’ll share two more basic recipes briefly.

Open-Faced Roast Deer

Besides the taste (YUM!), my favorite thing about this recipe is that dinner can be ready in less than 15 minutes!  I’d like to say 5 minutes, but since I have 2 toddlers I’m never able to do anything that fast.

IMG_9725First off, gather your ingredients:

  • 2 Cans Deer Meat
  • Instant Potatoes
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste
  • Butter to Taste
  • 2 Packs of Gravy Mix
  • A Loaf of Bread

That’s it!  Sometimes I use milk in my instant potatoes.  This time I pulled it out and ended up not using it.  That will just depend on how creamy you want your potatoes.

Now you’re ready to start:

  1. Boil water for your instant potatoes.  I never measure these, but you can follow the directions on the box for about 3 cups of Mashed Potatoes.
  2. Add salt, pepper, and butter to your water as desired.
  3. Empty the 2 cans of deer meat into a second saucepan.  Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.
  4. Mix the 2 packs of gravy mix into 2 cups of water.  Pour into a skillet over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring frequently.  Although the deer has made its own broth, most of it will boil away (as you can see in the above pictures), so I always like to make some extra gravy. This week I only made about 1 cup of gravy, but 2 cups is best!IMG_9736
  5. When the water for your potatoes boils, mix in potato flakes, a little at a time, until the potatoes are your desired consistency.
  6. At this point, the meat and gravy should be boiling.  Stir each dish one last time, pour the gravy over the meat, and bring to the table.  You are ready to eat!

    IMG_9738
    This is EVERYTHING you need for your meal!  Bread, Potatoes, and the Deer/Gravy Mixture.

Building Your Open-Faced “Sandwich”

First Layer:  BREADIMG_9740

Second Layer:  Mashed PotatoesIMG_9741

Third Layer: Meat & GravyIMG_9743

That’s it!  Enjoy your meal!  My family did!

Want to make it from scratch?

Now, I understand that many of you may not want to use all the processed food.  I understand!  We rarely use it ourselves, BUT the quickness of this meal makes it worth it to me.  I have, however, made everything but the bread “from scratch”, and it’s been an excellent meal.  It will just no longer be “Quick & Easy”.  However, if that’s something you want to try, you’ll just want to (1) Save beef broth from a previous meal or pick some up from the store.  You can use this recipe to make the brown gravy yourself.  And (2) Make the mashed potatoes from actual potatoes!  It just takes a little bit longer.  If you want to make your own bread, go for it!  I haven’t been that brave yet!

Now, you can also make this with beef, and it is *almost* as good.  I’ve used canned roast beef from the store, but it’s quite expensive.  I’ve also actually roasted an entire beef roast in the crockpot for 5 hours, and then pulled the beef & used the broth to make gravy.  It’s delicious that way as well!

Two Other Ways to Use Canned Deer:

  1. DeerBQ.  I have another recipe for DeerBQ that comes from baking the entire front quarter for several hours, pulling the meat, etc. That one ends up with a similar feel to NC or TN pulled pork BBQ, though the meat is definitely NOT pork.  THIS recipe is quite different, and I feel more closely resembles the chopped brisket that you’ll get in TX as barbecue.  To make it, your meal will be ready in FIVE minutes!  Simply dump the can(s) in a saucepan, and add barbecue sauce.  LOTS of barbecue sauce–like ¼ of a bottle.  As soon as you’ve heated it, just serve it on a bun with the sides of your choice.  So easy and delicious!
  2. Deer Stew.  Empty the deer cans into a large pot, and add veggies and a little extra water or beef broth.  Throw in whatever seasonings you like.  I use garlic, salt, and pepper, and every now and then throw in a dash of hot sauce or some chili powder for my husband who loves a little kick.  Cook until boiling, and until veggies are soft when pierced with a fork.  This will vary depending on what veggies you use.  (I often throw leftover veggies, like the potatoes & carrots from a roast, into the stew.)  You could also make it in the morning and put it in a crockpot for dinner.  On high it will be ready in less than 5 hours.  On low it will take about 7-8 hours.

 

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Rachel  🙂

 

Note:  I plan to make recipe cards for each of these meals, but it will probably be a few days before they are up!  I apologize!  I will update here when I get those up.  In the meantime, feel free to browse some of my other recipes at http://www.myselfathome.com/printables.

Meal Plan for March 5-11

So last week I tried a new recipe for Venison Steak, and my husband said it was “gourmet!’  For a woman who, 5 years ago, could only make about 5 meals–and they all came from either frozen chicken breasts or ground beef–this is an amazing compliment!

I am LOVING meal planning, even though we often switch meals around, and sometimes 1 or 2 of them don’t get made during a week.  Still, at least 4-5 nights a week we follow our meal plan pretty closely, and it has been so much fun to serve my family in this way!

This week, I even bought a new springy Pioneer Woman tablecloth, and some great placemats and cloth napkins to make our table more lovely.  It’s so sweet to see my boys using the cloth napkins, and they can’t shred them like they do the paper ones!  (They are 1 & 2 years old…)

meal-plan-for-the-week

Sunday, March 5garlic-pork-roast

Monday, March 6chicken-piccata-with-crispy-garlic

*NEW Recipe!  And I’m even going to try to make myself eat salad!  Here’s hoping that Romaine lettuce has a better texture than Iceberg….  We shall see!

Tuesday, March 7

  • Deer Chili with Crackers
  • Hot Dogs

Wednesday, March 8

  • Open-Faced Roast Deer

*I promise a post is coming this week on those Quick & Easy Deer Recipes!

Thursday, March 9

Friday, March 10

Saturday, March 11

This is yummy goodness, especially for my 2 pizza-loving boys!  And it’s so easy!  It’s the only reason I ever buy canned biscuits!

So tell me,
What’s for dinner at your house this week?

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FREE PRINTABLES!

meal-planner-image

I have a FREE printable meal planner that I designed in January.  I am LOVING using it each week to plan my meals, and it looks cute on my fridge!  There are also printable recipe cards for a few recipes on this page, that you can download.

How to Can Deer Meat

My favorite way to eat deer is from a can, and anytime I mention Canned Deer Meat to anyone, they’re either instantly curious or instantly repulsed.  I’ve yet to meet someone who has ever had canned deer meat, outside of my family.

I was born in West Virginia, where my Dad, Papaw, uncles, and anyone male loved spending their time deer hunting.  I don’t remember all the different ways we ate deer back then, but we’ve been eating canned deer meat for as long as I can remember.

My husband killed his first 2 deer in 2015, and my mom took care of all the processing for us!  We had canned deer for quite a while from that.  Since then, though, he hasn’t hunted, because he hasn’t wanted to spend the money on a hunting license.  So we’ve been missing out on a lot of yummy meals!

how-to-can-deer-meat

A couple of months ago, a wonderful church member killed a deer, and he dropped it at our local processor, paid the processing fees, and gifted it to us!  #BestGiftEver.  The processor can do lots of things, but we had him to keep it basic on the front/hind quarters (LEGS), so we got them from him, all cleaned, sealed up and frozen.  They were huge!  Like, as wide as our upright deep freeze!  Since it was Christmas time, we kept it frozen until a few weeks ago when we were ready to do the canning.

I’ve never done the canning before, so we asked my Mom to bring her pressure canner and come show us how.  To be honest, she did most of the work.  That’s what moms are for, right?  I’m kidding about that; we just didn’t have much room for all of us to work at once in our kitchen.

About 3 days before my Mom came over, we moved the meat from our freezer to our refrigerator to let it thaw.  By the time she came, it was mostly thawed, but had a few small frozen spots in the middle.  As for the rest of the process, it was really pretty easy:

  1. Sterilize the jars & rings.  We just boil them for a few minutes.
  2. Cut the meat.  We began by cutting the meat up into small cubes, about 1″ wide.  We discarded any of the white filmy substance that was on the outside of the meat.
  3. Fill each canning jar with the raw meat.  Stuff them full!  As they cook, they will settle a bit in the jars.
  4. Add salt.  My mom usually sprinkles some brown gravy mix in each jar, which would contain some salt as well.  We didn’t have any gravy mix, so we just used a little bit of salt.  The taste is the same!
  5. Put lids & rings on each jar, and place jars in the pressure canner.  There should be water in the canner, according to its directions.
  6. Seal the pressure canner, and begin cooking.  Be sure to follow instructions for your canner on this step!  You want to seal the canner, and then slowly bring up the pressure.  Once it’s at full pressure, cook your meat for about an hour.  (YES!  It cooks AFTER you put it in the can!)
  7. Gently slide pressure canner off of the heat source.  Allow to cool and de-pressurize.  Do NOT open the canner until the pressure is completely down!  It is very dangerous.  When you do finally open the canner, lift the side of the lid that’s furthest away from you, so that the steam comes out away from your body.  This is very important, as the steam will be very hot and could cause burns!
  8. Gently remove cans from the canner.  Line them up on a dish towel on your counter.  Within an hour or so, you should hear each lid “pop” as it seals.  If you aren’t listening for the pops, it’s okay.  Just make sure each lid has sealed before you put them away.  If one does not seal, the meat will ruin–so you’d want to put it in the fridge and use it in a meal right away.  You can tell the lids have sealed because they will be slightly domed inward.
  9. That’s it!  Your meat is finished and ready to put away with the rest of your canned goods.  It will remain good for at least a year–though ours never lasts that long!

All in all, it’s a pretty simple process.  The hardest part is cutting the meat up.  We LOVE canned deer meat for so many reasons, but the biggest reason is that it makes for several fast and easy meals!  As a busy mom, or even a not-busy mom, it’s always great to have a meal on hand that you can prepare in 15 minutes–and canned deer meat makes that possible!

Stay posted for a post on my favorite quick recipes for using canned deer meat!  They are delicious and easy!

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Rachel  🙂

Meal Plan for February 26-March 4

Y’all, this week’s meal planning was a HUGE success!  I went through my meal plan to make my grocery list for the week, and NO JOKE……  My shopping list for an entire week & 21 meals for my family, was only 5 items long!  I spent less than $20!  WHAT?!?!?!

If you struggle in your grocery budget, and you aren’t meal planning, this is one simple way to start saving money.  Another simple tip is to only buy meat when it’s on sale. Our freezer is stocked full of meat, so that’s an expensive part of our meals that we rarely have to buy.

meal-plan-for-the-week

Sunday, February 26

Monday, February 27

  • BBQ Chicken
  • Fried Potatoes
  • Steamed Vegetables
  • Garlic Bread

Tuesday, February 28

garlic-pork-roast

Wednesday, March 1

 

  • Tacos

Thursday, March 2

  • Pizza!

Friday, March 3

Saturday, March 4

  • Leftovers–  “Clean out the Fridge!”

So tell me,
What’s for dinner at your house this week?

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Rachel 🙂

FREE PRINTABLES!

meal-planner-image

I have a FREE printable meal planner that I designed in January.  I am LOVING using it each week to plan my meals, and it looks cute on my fridge!  There are also printable recipe cards for a few recipes on this page, that you can download.

Meal Plan for February 19-25

I meal plan for every meal, and through meal planning we’ve discovered so many benefits.  We’re saving money on our grocery bill.  We are eating more meals at the dinner table.  We’re eating healthier.  Our boys are learning to try new foods.  Although I plan breakfast and lunch, those plans are pretty redundant.  My dinner plans are much more thorough, and I’d like to start posting my weekly meal plan each week, with links to some of the recipes.  Enjoy, and let me know if you add something to your recipe collection!

meal-plan-for-the-week

Sunday, February 19

  • DeerBQ
    *Stay Tuned for a post on Quick & Easy Deer Recipes
  • Fried Potatoes
  • Baked Beans

Monday, February 20

garlic-pork-roast

Tuesday, February 21

  • Taco Casserole  (This is my husband’s recipe, and OH, SOOOO delicious!)

Wednesday, February 22

how-to-roast-a-whole-chicken-in-the-crockpot-familyfreshmeals-com_

Thursday, February 23

  • Open-Faced Roast Deer
    *Stay Tuned for a post on Canning Deer Meat!

Friday, February 24

Saturday, February 25

  • We’re eating out with our extended family!

So tell me,
What’s for dinner at your house this week?

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Rachel  🙂

FREE PRINTABLES!

I have a FREE printable meal-planner that I designed in January.  I am LOVING using it each week to plan my meals, and it looks cute on my fridge!  There are also printable recipe cards for a few recipes on this page, that you can download.

Meal Plan for February 12-18 & Free Printables

I’ve been doing meal planning off and on since I got married, but for the past year it has finally been something that I’ve been consistent with.  This month, I’ve even paid closer attention to our grocery budget, and I am SAVING money by meal planning!

I do my grocery runs every week on Thursdays.  Most months, my weekly shopping has ranged from $60-180, totaling about $350 per month.  That’s crazy!  In the past month, I’ve only bought the necessary things for my meal plan.  I’ve spent a range of $40-100 on my shopping, totaling about $200!  What?!?!  $150 savings just by planning ahead?   I’m just as stunned as you are!  🙂

I meal plan for every meal, but most days lunch consists of leftovers from the previous night’s dinner, and breakfast is fairly redundant as well.  My dinner plans are much more thorough, and I’d like to start posting my weekly meal plan each week, with links to some of the recipes.  Enjoy, and let me know if you add something to your recipe collection!

meal-plan-for-the-week

Sunday, February 12

  • Clean out the Fridge Day!  (We have plenty of leftovers from last week!)

Monday, February 13

Tuesday, February 14
Candlelit Valentine’s Dinner!

Wednesday, February 15

  • Leftover Spaghetti

Thursday, February 16

  • Open-Faced Roast Deer!
    *Stay Tuned for a post on Canning Deer Meat!

Friday, February 17pork-chops

Saturday, February 18

  • Tacos.  Always a family favorite, and no sides necessary!

So tell me,
What’s for dinner at your house this week?

win_20170211_18_39_54_pro
Rachel  🙂

 

BONUS!  I have a FREE printable meal-planner that I designed about a month ago.  I am LOVING using it each week to plan my meals, and it looks cute on my fridge!  There are also printable recipe cards for a few recipes on this page, that you can download!