Meal Plan for the Month of May

May menu

You can download my May meal plan here.

Hi, internet. It’s been awhile. Sorry! I’ve had some life stuff happening.

Rest assured that I’ve been cooking. I’ve been eating. And I’ve been planning. Oh, how I’ve been planning! In what is likely a futile effort to exert control over the universe, I actually planned my May menu in one fell swoop, complete with recipe links. And then I told myself that I should probably post it up here ASAP in case it might be of use to anyone else.

Which clearly didn’t happen.  Um… better late than never?

A brief recap of how I meal plan:

  • I only plan five meals a week. This gives me room for spontaneous life happenings… Mr. M having a sudden yen to barbecue oysters, accepting a dinner invite, etc. It also gives us time to eat through our leftovers and cobble together random meals with leftover groceries.
  • I set themes for each weeknight. The themes rotate, based on a number of factors. These factors include time of year, life events, and whatever it is that I’m prioritizing at the moment. The one fixed category is that we always eat at least one vegetarian meal per week. My May priorities include saving time and money.
  • I like to use what I already have as much as possible. Currently, we’ve got a huge bag of tortillas from Costco to use up. We’ve also got a freezer full of lamb, razor clams, and pork. That factored in to the categories I chose for the month.
  • I do love to cook and try new recipes, so I picked four new (and potentially time-intensive) meals to try. They are indicated in grey on the calendar.

Want to download my May meal plan calendar with links to recipes? Click here for a copy. 

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Herb’s Clam Patties

5.18 (26)

Grandpa and Big Sis, clam digging in 2014

Okay, I’m terrible at remembering to take photos while cooking. I promise to update this recipe ASAP with pictures of cleaned clams, ground clams, clam juice, clam batter, and clam patties.

In the mean time, however, I wanted to share a fabulous recipe. My mom reverse-engineered these patties based on her childhood memories. Her much-beloved father (the eponymous Herb) was an avid fisherman who also enjoyed that oh-so-Pacific-Northwest activity of razor-clam digging. My mom says he didn’t actually have a recipe for these patties; he just made them by throwing in a little of this and a little of that.

Thankfully, my mother is willing to give measurements when cornered and threatened. 🙂 She also advised that you can use milk as your only liquid for the recipe (omitting clam juice completely) but the patties won’t be as flavorful.

This recipe makes a TON of patties. If you’re having a big gathering, the recipe doubles well (and you’d definitely want to use 3 eggs for a double batch).

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups ground clams (we use razor clams because, well, Washingtonians…)
  • 1 1/2 cups corn meal
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 or 2 eggs (Either is fine. Really.)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup or more clam juice (see note below)
  • salt & pepper

Directions:

Cleaning razor clams is a process in and of itself. You can check here for a great tutorial. I used a food grinder to grind them up afterwards.

Clams prepped? Hurray! Now it’s time for the actual recipe directions!

Mix your cornmeal, flour, and baking powder together in one bowl. In another bowl, first beat the egg/eggs. Add in milk. Combine your wet and dry ingredients together. Also add the ground clams. Stir, then add enough clam juice to make a smooth, thick batter.

Clam patty batter should be a little thicker than pancake batter. If you’re not sure you’ve reached the right consistency, error on the side of caution… leave it a bit thick, fry up a test patty, and see if it cooked through without burning the outside. If not, adjust accordingly by adding more clam juice or milk.

Note on clam juice: freshly cleaned or thawed clams will give off juice if you let them sit in a container or bowl for a few minutes. The juice looks like cloudy water. Alternatively, bottles of clam juice are often available in the same grocery store aisle as canned tuna.