Taking the full measure of life

Weekly Meal Plan: Finding Balance & Eating Autumn Up

October 5th, 2008 · 14 Comments

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This weekend was insanely busy and pleasurable–it was the kind of weekend where you run around all day, stay up late, then get up early just to do it all over again.  For once, I had enough energy that even though I was tired at points, I didn’t absolutely have to go take a nap to make it through everything (which is good, since I am not sure when I would’ve fit one in!).  Last night, we attended a local theater group‘s fun performance of Romeo & Juliet, where we took a picnic dinner.  I had asked our friends who were going if any of them wanted to pitch in money for me to make them dinner instead of making it themselves.  None of them have food allergies, but six of them took me up on it knowing that the food would be made to my restrictions—no gluten, no soy, no dairy, no eggs.  So, in the mood for autumn-themed meals, I threw the apartment windows open to the fall breezes and spent about three hours yesterday, start to finish, creating an experiment: a vegan (brown-rice noodle) lasagna featuring butternut squash, mushrooms, onion, spinach, walnuts and a ‘creamy’ marsala wine sauce. I also made an apple, grape, pecans, and greens salad with a poppyseed dressing and the mesquite chocolate chip cookies I posted a few weeks ago.  It all came out well, if I do say so myself; I was particularly thrilled that the lasagna held together, as all of my previous gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free lasagna attempts have fallen apart when sliced.

Tonight for dinner, it’s time for the simple: I have leftover coconut curry reheating on the stove as I write.  In fact, I wanted my whole evening to be simple; my husband suggested we go to a movie, but I told him I’d like to be still tonight.  That balance point between frenetic activity and absolute calm varies for each person, and part of my goal for my life at this point is to better heed my sense of where I fall in that spectrum.

All of that brings me to my week’s meals, where I’m balancing a busy social week with my needed and desired writing work and my wish to explore more of the time-consuming dishes I’ve avoided when low on time and energy.  Here’s to balance!

(My meal plan is, as always, gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, and egg-free; high in veggies; low in processed foods; and pretty healthy.  Oh, and tasty, of course.)


Breakfast: gluten-free, vegan pumpkin waffles (I left a comment about our results, but it hasn’t been moderated yet) with toasted pecans, maple syrup, and a slice of bacon each

Lunch: Lasagna leftovers and a salad of greens, apples, dried banana, raisins, sunflower seeds, and a maple/balsamic vinaigrette

Dinner:  Coconut curry leftovers


Breakfast: Oatmeal

To Do: Chinese med. appt. at 10 a.m.

Lunch:  Tuna/veggie salad in a tomato with baked waffle fries

To Do: Bake bread.  Attend work-out class at 5:30

Dinner: Heather’s Quinoa Recipe (without tofu)


Breakfast: greens and brown rice

Lunch:  Leftovers

Dinner:  Lentil/lamb shepherd’s pie with garlic mashed potato topping

To Do: Attend Presidential Debate Party at Beth J.’s! at 8:30 p.m.


Breakfast: millet mashed with garlic and greens

Lunch: Heath

To Do: Roast spaghetti squash before work-out class at 5:30 p.m.

Dinner: Spaghetti Squash Mexicana with Tropical Avocado Salsa (Veganomicon, p. 178)


Breakfast: quinoa and greens

Lunch: Leftovers

Dinner: Date Night! Dinner at Tamarind Seed and a play at The Alliance


Breakfast: brown rice and greens

To Do: Make bread.

Lunch: Sandwich and veggie chips

To Do: Put together slow-cooker meal. Prepare for gathering: make chocolate cake, and set up living room. Attend work-out class at 5:30 p.m.

Dinner: Sandwiches

To Do: Party at Barb’s at 7 p.m.; Opening night of the photography exhibit where Dan and I had photos accepted at 8 p.m.; Port and desserts at our apartment with friends afterward


To Do: Hit the farmer’s market for veggies and fruits

Brunch: Blueberry pancakes (with blueberries picked and frozen this summer) with pecans

Lunch: rogueApron soupline (they take special requests from people with allergies!) from 2-4 p.m.

Dinner: Big salad with farmer’s market roasted veggies and homemade vinaigrette

As usual, I’ll be submitting my recipe plan to the Gluten-Free Menu Swap, which is being hosted this week by Cheryl at Gluten-Free Goodness.

Tags: flexitarian · locavore · meal planning

14 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Hannah Celeste // Oct 6, 2008 at 3:27 am

    It all sounds beautiful and tasty and fall-esque.

    I’d eat any one of those meals with you.

    Good luck with your balance! I’ve been trying to do the same. After a frantic pace making art lately and doing the mommy thing I am feeling a bit crispy around the edges and I have to learn to slow down…after my husband’s party next weekend. I swear! hehee…

    Happy October!

  • 2 Cheryl // Oct 6, 2008 at 3:54 am

    that lasagne sounds incredible. have a great week!

  • 3 Gluten Free Goodness » Blog Archive » Menu Plan Monday: Pears // Oct 6, 2008 at 4:09 am

    […] of Aprovechar graces us with a seasonal, gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, and egg-free menu. Since I avoid all […]

  • 4 Sarah // Oct 6, 2008 at 4:48 am

    Yeah for a debate party! The building I work in is where the debate is being held.

    Have a great balanced week!

  • 5 Nowheymama // Oct 6, 2008 at 6:27 am

    I am so ready for pumpkin recipes! Mmmm….

  • 6 Laura // Oct 7, 2008 at 11:05 am

    wow!!!! that lasagna sounds really good! can you post the recipe please? i love butternut squash lasagna….

  • 7 Michel // Oct 7, 2008 at 8:35 pm

    Sounds like you are making the transition very, very well… I love the balance and boundaries! I am envious of your ability to take the time to prepare and cook for yourselves. I eat avacado, chicken, rice….anything quick and easy!!! You all are inspirations!

  • 8 Melanie // Oct 7, 2008 at 10:04 pm

    Congratulations on taking the plunge! My best wishes to you for your new journey.

  • 9 Emily // Oct 8, 2008 at 2:50 pm

    “tropical avocado salsa” … mmm …

  • 10 glutenfreeforgood // Oct 8, 2008 at 4:31 pm

    I will have to try a version of that lasagna of yours. It sounds wonderful. And I can actually smell the coconut curry. Especially since I’m making a stew with curry in it right now.
    Take care,

  • 11 John's Weight Loss Blog // Oct 9, 2008 at 4:51 am

    I was thinking the same thing as Emily – Tropical Avocado salsa sounds really unique – never heard of anything like it but I’ll bet it’s good. Could you point to a recipe for that one?

  • 12 Sally Parrott Ashbrook // Oct 9, 2008 at 11:32 am

    John–the recipe’s in Veganomicon, but I don’t have their permission to give it out. . . . Picture a fresh pineapple salsa with avocado added, and you get the idea. Unfortunately, though, that meal wasn’t as good as I had thought it would be, overall! Disappointing.

  • 13 meg wolff // Oct 9, 2008 at 4:45 pm

    Man, I wish you were my friend! Would I want to pitch in and have YOU make dinner? You bet!! You “experiment” sounded heavenly.

  • 14 Angela @ angelaskitchen.com // Oct 11, 2008 at 7:24 am

    Really tasty sounding menu! I love that you are striving for balance in your life and your cooking. My life always sounds so busy here, but I thrive on chasing the kiddos around and it energizes me – at least now that we are gluten free ;o) I like the cycle of the seasons bringing not only new foods to cook, new things to celebrate, but new patterns of business and rest to our lives. We are gluten/dairy free here, with very minimal soy and rotate eggs. Your lasagna sounds really interesting. I would love it if you posted the recipe.

    Your blog is really lovely. Thank you for all you share.

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