Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Oh yeah, it's Lent...

One of the things I do want to blog about here is our adventures in cooking, since it's something that we love to do, and we do in our house (especially now that we have a HUGE kitchen)...and on occasion, I will blog about faith/religion, since that's also an important part of our lives.

So here's a topic that combines the two--Lent. If you're Catholic, most of you started today. We started Monday, because Turtle is Byzantine Catholic and I am now Byzantine by proxy. I was raised Roman Catholic, but for a lot of reasons, we go "East." Another topic for another day.

Anywhoo, ByzCaths abstain from all animal products, except fish/seafood (yeah, I don't get it either) on the first Monday of Lent and on Good Friday. No meat, no dairy, no poultry. I can eat vegetarian just fine, but vegan is tough. Especially when you don't eat that way 363 days out of the year! Also during Lent, ByzCaths abstain from meat/poultry on Wednesdays and Fridays during Lent. You Romans know the Friday deal--we go "harder core" and do it twice a week. At least we can have eggs and dairy!

What throws us for a loop is what to eat...

On Monday, we had peanut butter and banana sandwiches on RYE BREAD for breakfast because that was the only bread in the house without dairy or eggs. It didn't taste too bad. No lunch for me, only because I wasn't hungry, but I did snack on some Tostitos. Again, no animal products, so who cares if it's junk food, right? I had bought some frozen shrimp at the store on Saturday in preparation for Monday's dinner, and figured I could make shrimp scampi but leave out the butter (just use olive oil), with rice and a veggie. Awesomely, asparagus was on sale.

That went off without a hitch and the scampi was pretty good although we both missed the little bit of butter that is usually added to the olive oil. Oh and the cheese! We definitely missed the Parmesan sprinkled on top of our food! But we survived and all was well.

But what sucks is remembering that we can't always have leftovers. I see where the sacrifice comes in to play ;-)

Sunday I had made pulled pork, but we couldn't eat it on Monday. So we ate it again last night, and it was fine, but it wouldn't have lasted til Thursday. We had to throw it out. I hate wasting food, mostly because it's a huge waste of MONEY. (You will soon learn that I try to be pretty frugal and I really enjoy meal planning.) On Thursday, we can eat meat again, but it has to be something that either we'll eat in one night, or if there are leftovers, will be OK until Saturday.

So here is our week:
Sunday--pulled pork
Monday--shrimp scampi
Tuesday--leftover pulled pork
Wednesday--tuna melts
Thursday--pork tenderloin (usually we try not to have too much of one animal at a time, but it just worked out this way, this week)
Friday--I don't know!
Saturday--also don't know, but we can have meat, so not a big deal

Like most of my stories, I'm getting to the "meat" (hahaha, I made a pun!) of the story 5 minutes after I started. The point of this post: I need help figuring out what to eat on our meatless days! I also want to keep costs down but be as healthy as possible. We could do pizza, sure, but that's a bit pricey and not so healthy. Not that tuna melts are tons better...

I already warned Turtle that there might be "eggs and toast" nights...he was cool with that. (And I'm pumped since I got a free dozen eggs at the grocery store recently!) But even that gets old.

PEOPLE: GIVE ME YOUR RECIPES FOR MEATLESS DISHES! If I make them, I will give you a shout out and what could be better than a random interwebz shout out?


  1. we're catholic too (but not byz caths) so we just can't have meat on fridays and ash wednesday. i like to buy a packet of frozen fish at sam's to make random stuff. fish tacos are a big hit here. other than that, we stock up on tuna and have long john silver's once a week (i know it's gross but i love ljs during lent and lent only).
    make sure you share any good recipes.

  2. I love my comfort Lent food from childhood. . . tuna noodle casserole! I hate tuna and hate casseroles. . . but there's just something about this that reminds me of being a kid. :) I guess being a kid is delicious?

    I also eat a lot of pasta w/ meatless sauces, vegetables, or seafood.

    Okay . . . just did a search on (seriously amazing site). . . see if you can find anything here:

    I always like going to the "Top 20" tab and finding the recipes that are highest rated. . .

  3. KC--funny you should mention the bulk fish at Sam's. We were JUST talking about this the other night--how we need to do a bulk frozen fish purchase at Costco soon.

    IG--oooh, thanks for those links. I have poked around on allrecipes before, but I will definitely check those out and report back on what we made. Turtle is MUCH more into looking up recipes than I turn!

  4. IG--btw, I think all we ate during Lent as kids was tuna and mac & cheese! My parents would eat fish or scallops or something...but I wouldn't touch them then. And my brother? Ha, he probably ate cereal during Lent b/c he is SOOOO picky. He'll be 28 tomorrow and is still very very picky.

  5. *Bean burritos


    *Minestrone soup

    *Panzanella (I use Ina's recipe and a bottled dressing

    *Salad Nicoise (Shameless plug

    *Fritatta (Because who wants to bother with pie crust for a quiche?)

  6. Thanks Meghan! (btw, I like that you spell your name the "right" way)

    I have not heard of this panzanella, but I think I will check it out.


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