Posted in - 2012 Swap Recipes, - Meatless, - Pork, - Poultry, - Red Meat, - Seafood/Fish, Meal Swap Recipes

Meal Swap: Friday’s October 2012 Menu and Recipes

Oct. 2012 Menu and Recipes

Note: All the recipes serves six if not otherwise specified.


Crab Cakes


Makes 10 cakes

2 tablespoons olive oil
6 green onions, chopped
3/8 cup olive oil
1 (16 ounce) can canned crabmeat, drained
1 egg
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 teaspoon dry mustard
8 ounces buttery round crackers, crushed
1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
salt to taste ground black pepper to taste
1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs) or regular dry bread crumbs

Prep Day Directions: Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a skillet over high heat. Saute green onions briefly until tender; cool slightly. Combine crabmeat, sauteed green onions, egg, mayonnaise, dry mustard, crushed crackers, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, Old Bay seasoning, salt and pepper. Form into 1/2 inch thick patties. Wrap individually and freeze.

Serve Day Directions: thaw. Coat the patties with bread crumbs. Heat 1/2 cup oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Cook cakes until golden brown on each side. Drain briefly on paper towels and serve hot.

Shrimp Pesto Pasta


3 cloves of garlic
1 lb. box of penne pasta
1 cup of cherry tomatoes sliced
1/3 cup of pesto
2/3 lb. cooked, frozen shrimp
salt and pepper
Parmesan cheese

Prep Day Directions: Cook pasta al dente, cool. Mix together pasta, tomatos, garlic, salt and pepper and pesto. Toss together and freeze in freezer bag. Place shrimp in seperate freezer bag and parmesan in seperate sandwich bag.

Serve Day Directions: Defrost pasta and shrimp in refrigerator overnight (remove parmesean cheese bag from shrimp). Heat pasta and shrimp in saucepan on medium-low until it is heated through, approximately 15-20 minutes. Optional, add 1-2 T. of olive oil to pasta if needed. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese to taste.


Pesto Stuffed Chicken


4 large boneless skinless chicken breasts or 2.5 lb. (40oz.) frozen chicken breast bag
10 oz prepared bail pesto
1 small yellow or white onion, chopped
8 oz marinara with basil, oregano and garlic
1/2 C grated pizza cheese (mozzarella, provolone, Parmesan, Romano)
Salt and Pepper (you provide)

Prep Day Directions: Label a 2 gallon freezer bag. Place 2.5 lb. chicken bag in 2 gallon freezer bag. Chop the onion into 1/2″ chunks and place in a small freezer bag. Place 1/2 cup cheese in small freezer bag. Place marinara in a small freezer bag. Then place all the small freezer bags of marinara, onions, and cheese into the 2 gallon bag. Seal up and freeze.

Serve Day Directions: thaw. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place a chicken breasts on your cutting board. Cut chicken breasts in half widthwise. Place one hand on top of the breasts and carefully slice the breast in half from the side. Don’t cut all the way through the breast and open it like a book. It will look like the shape of a heart kind of.

Sprinkle the insides with salt and pepper. Spread the right half of your chicken breasts with 1 to 1.5 tablespoons of the prepared pesto. Fold the left half of the chicken breasts back over the right side and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sprinkle onions on the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Place breasts over the top of the onions. Open the marinara sauce and spoon two to three Tablespoons over each breast until all the sauce has been used. Sprinkle each chicken breast with two to three tablespoons of cheese.

Cover the pan with foil. When you are ready to cook the chicken please thaw in the fridge for two days. Then bake 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Then remove foil and bake 5-10 additional minutes to brown the cheese.

Note: As the pesto cooks inside the chicken the oil tends to leak out and collect in the bottom of the pan. By putting onions underneath the chicken breasts it lifts the chicken up out of the oil and you get more flavor and less fat.

White Bean Chicken Chili


3/4 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 medium onion, chopped
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 small can, green chilis
2 cans (15 ounces each) white kidney or cannellini beans, rinsed and drained, divided
3 cups chicken broth, divided
1-1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
Sour cream and minced fresh cilantro, optional

Prep Day: Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the chicken, onion, green chilis. oregano and cumin in oil for 3-4 minutes or until chicken is browned and vegetables are crisp-tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. In a small bowl, mash 1 cup of beans; add 1/2 cup broth and stir until blended. Add to the remaining beans and broth. Put mixture in freezer bag. Freeze.

Serve Day: After Thawing ingredients, put in 3 qt. slow-cooker, cover and cook on low for 3 to 3-1/2 hours or until heated through. Stir before serving. Sprinkle with cheese. Garnish with sour cream and cilantro if desired.


Oven Stew


1 Cup of diced onions
3 Cups of Beef Broth
2 Cups of carrots
2 T of brown sugar
1 Cup cubed red potato
1 Cup of green beans
2 tsp of worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 lbs of beef stew meat
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp dried thyme
3 T flour
1 tsp chopped garlic
2 tsp tomato paste
2 T of cornstarch (if desired)

Prep Day Directions: Combine all ingredients into one gallon zip lock freezer bag removing all excess air and freeze.

Serve Day Directions: To serve thaw completely in refrigerator and cook in crock pot on low for 6-8 hours. On the stove bring to boil and then reduce heat to simmer for 30-45 minutes until vegetables are cooked through. Now if you want you stew thicker, use the 2 Tbsp cornstarch and mix it with 2 Tbsp cold water and add it to the cooked stew. On the stove top, just cook until thick. For the crock pot, turn it on high and cook for 30 more minutes. Serve in large bowls with bread for dipping.

Spaghetti Bolognese


2T. parsley
4 onions,chopped
4 cloves garlic,chopped
2 can diced tomatoes(16 oz can)
2 cans tomato paste(6 0z)
2t. Worchestershire sauce
1 LB. lean ground beef
oregano-to taste
basil-to taste
1 bay leaf

Prep Day: Sauté parsley,onions,garlic in 1/4c.oil. Add cooked beef and all other ingredients and simmer for 3 hours. Remove bay leaf before serving. Cool and place in freezer containers.

Serve Day: Thaw. Heat in sauce pan till heated through and serve over spaghetti .


Vegetarian Lasagna Alfredo


1/2 a box of oven ready lasagna noodles
1 3/4 cups broccoli florets
1 egg
10 ounces ricotta cheese
1 1/4 heaping teaspoon’s of Italian seasoning
3-4 tomatoes chopped
1 jar Alfredo sauce
1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese

Prep Day Directions: Steam broccoli in steamer basket for 5-7 minutes until crisp-tender – In a large bowl, combine the eggs, ricotta cheese and italian seasoning; gently stir in tomatoes and broccoli. Set aside. – Spread 1/4 cup sauce in greased 8×8 pan – Top with three noodles, half of ricotta mixture, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup sauce. Repeat layers. Top with three more noodles, remaining mozzarella and sauce.

Note: Bake fresh uncovered at 350 for 35-40 minutes or until bubbly and edges are lightly browned. Let stand for 15 minutes before cutting.

Cover and freeze up to three months.

Serve Day Directions: To use Frozen Lasagna: Thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before making. Bake, uncovered, at 350for 50-60 minutes or until bubbly and edges are lightly browned. Put any extra sauce on at this time. Let sit for 15 minutes before cutting.

Veggie Soup


1 yellow onion chopped
3 carrots peeled and chopped
2 stalks of celery
3 cloves chopped garlic
10 red potatoes cubed Oil to cover the pan
1 small zucchini halved and sliced
1 good size handful of green beans chopped
1 can of corn
3 cups of stock
3 cups of water
Old bay
salt and pepper

Prep Day Directions: In stock pot cover the bottom of pan with olive oil. Add onions, celery, carrots and garlic. Cook till onions are translucent. Add potatoes and left brown a bit. Add tomatoes with juice and zucchini deglaze the pan. Add stock , water, corn, green beans and spices. Let simmer for hour.

Serve Day Directions: Reheat and Eat!


Thai Pork with Peanut Sauce and Jasmine Rice


2 lb pork tenderloin, cut into 4 pieces
1/3 cup prepared teriyaki sauce (use a high quality brand)
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 sliced red/colored peppers
¼ cup creamy peanut butter (you provide)
¼ cup dry roasted peanuts
½ cup green onions, thinly sliced
2 pkg. Trader Joe’s rice

Prep Day Directions: Place tenderloin, teriyaki sauce, rice vinegar, red pepper flakes, and garlic into a gallon size freezer bag. Label and store in freezer until ready to use. Peanut butter, peanuts, and green onions should only be used on cooking day.

Serve Day Directions: Let slow cooker freezer kit thaw 24 hours in the refrigerator. It might still be a little frozen but that is fine. Dump the whole kit into the slow cooker and follow the steps. *I did not include the 1/2 cup of peanut butter needed. (I assumed everyone has this on hand. 🙂 You will need to add this at step 2 of instructions. Also green onions don’t freeze very week so I gavel those seperately with the peanuts.)

Step 1. Place all ingredients (except peanut butter, peanuts, and green onions) into the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 7-9 hours. ** Mine was done at around 6 ½ – 7 hours. Pork should be tender but not falling apart (unless that is the consistency you like) The original recipe called for a cooking time of 8-9 hours on low but that would have been way to long for my slow cooker – the pork would have been completely dried out. Know your slow cooker and keep an eye on it around 6 1/2 hours.

Step 2. Remove pork from slow cooker and chop into bite size chunks. Add the peanut butter to the sauce. Stir until it dissolves into the sauce. Step 3. Return the pork to the slow cooker and toss with the sauce. Serve over brown jasmine rice. Sprinkle with peanuts and green onions. To cook Trader Joes rice, microwave 3 minutes, EACH bag seperately.

Sage Breaded Pork Chops


Prep Day Directions: In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, mustard, and sage and let stand 15 minutes. Spread breadcrumbs on a rimmed baking sheet and season with salt and pepper. Pour egg mixture onto another rimmed baking sheet. In batches, season pork chops with salt and pepper and coat in egg mixture. Gently shake to remove excess, then dredge in breadcrumbs, pressing to adhere.

How to freeze: Layer pork chops between sheets of freezer paper and transfer to freezer bags. Press out air, seal bags, and freeze flat. Store in the freezer, up to 6 weeks.

Serve Day Directions: ** I have not tried cooking these from frozen, but the recipe says you can. You might want to thaw in fridge first. To serve, heat broiler. Place a rimmed baking sheet in broiler to heat. For each frozen chop, combine 1/2 teaspoon melted butter and 2/3 teaspoon oil; brush on both sides. For each batch of two, place chops on sheet and broil until both sides are deep golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes, flipping halfway through.




I’m a married mother of 3. Who loves living in Minnesota, prep ahead cooking, and couldn’t live without them now. No more worries about the age old question “What’s for Dinner?”. I am also transitioning my family into the slow food and clean eating movement. I believe it’s best if we can eat food in it’s most natural state. I love to share the information I have been gaining through this whole experience. I’m also a trained personal chef. Cooking is a passion and hobby of mine. Hope your are enjoying the content of my blog.

6 thoughts on “Meal Swap: Friday’s October 2012 Menu and Recipes

  1. The Thai Pork with Peanut Sauce was outstanding! I was in a hurry though and didn’t throw it in the crock pot, but slowly sizzled it for about 20 minutes in a wok..the pork was tender enough and tasted great!

  2. We loved loved loved the Pesto Stuffed Chicken.. will certainly make that again. Other one’s we’ve really enjoyed so far were the crab cakes and the white bean chicken chili.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s